image The Story of Us

By Munah Nicola Tarpeh


  • Title: Son of Man 
  • Author: Amara Nicole Okolo
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 118
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Fiction

I am the story he wanted to publish. Each sentence simmered in bowls of wrath. The letters were fiery, their message scalding. I was eager to read, thirsty for attention. But as with every fateful story, I was rejected and put away because of my honesty, because I spoke the truth. And in 1996, nobody could handle my truth.

In this collection of six short stories, the author employs inanimate objects – a pair of worn shoes, a machete, a rosary, amongst others – to tell stories about human beings, the not-so-perfect world they live in and how it has affected them adversely. The stories are different but have a common thread running through them: how the system has failed the citizens. More…

image Americana Blues

By Ona Akinde 


  • Title: This American Life Sef
  • Editors: Rudolf Ogoo Okonkwo 
  • Publisher: Winepress Publishing
  • Number of pages: 94
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Essays

Over the years, there has been a significant rise in the number of Nigerians leaving the country for greener pastures. According to the US Department of State, more than 163,000 immigrant and non-immigrant visas were issued to Nigerians between March 2017 and January 2018, accounting for 32.78 per cent of visas issued to 54 countries on the continent. We hear the stories of Nigerians leaving at all cost, of prayer and fasting for visas and how leaving for America is the ultimate dream. What we do not often hear is the downside, what leaving your home country for another truly means. This is what Okonkwo sets out to achieve in This American Life Sef, a collection of five essays and two short stories documenting the experiences of Africans living in America. More…

image Youth: Nigeria’s Fulcrum

By Ekemini Pius 


  • Title: The Audacity of Youth 
  • Author: Tochi Okafor
  • Publisher: Winepress Publishing
  • Number of pages: 122
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Essays

Tochi Okafor is a widely recognised figure in the field of youth development. He begins this motivational book by emphasising the importance of youth as a delicate stage in a person’s life. He reels off names of people around the world who became known for great things in their teens and twenties. He regrets that most young people postpone their dreams until they have acquired a university degree, whereupon they go searching for non-existent jobs instead of channelling their entrepreneurial energies into creating opportunities for themselves and others. To make matters worse, many of them engage in anti-social activities as a result of their unemployment. The author himself is not enthused about white collar jobs, which he sees as characterised by wage slavery and the stifling of untapped potential. The work that brings satisfaction is the one we generate for ourselves. More…

image History as a Harbinger of Necessary Societal and Political Reforms

By Omotola Otubela 


  • Title: The Ifeajuna Manuscript  
  • Author: Demola Adeniran
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 205
  • Year of publication: 2017
  • Category: Fiction

Crime fiction takes a lot of tactical and deductive thinking to animate characters and portray gripping incidents. African writers such as Mũkoma wa Ngũgĩ, Obinna Udenwe, Demola Adeniran, and Chris Abani, to mention a few, have trod the path of creating fiction in this form, which encompasses unaccounted deaths, investigations, suspense as well as adventure. More…

image Unveiling Memories: A Review of Richard Ali’s City of Memories

By Nureni Ibrahim 


  • Title: City of Memories 
  • Author: Richard Ali
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 223
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Fiction

Memories are journeys we come into
beyond the walls of the mind –
like Chibok, closing in,
slowly, to an early embrace;

an embrace that chokes into
a fragile submission;
for we are all travelers waiting
for the first sign of light –
the sun, in orange, leading
to the prologue of things to come. – Noah Oladele, ‘The Sun Will Rise Again’

City of Memories can be said to depict a microcosm of Nigeria. Richard Ali narrates the story from the point of view of different characters, all of whom express one thing in common: responses to massacre, war and dehumanisation. The political, economic and social setting of northern Nigeria in the 1990s is brought to light through the romantic relationship between two characters, Faruk Ibrahim and Rahila Pam. One of the major pivots around which the novel’s art of creativity spins is romantic delicateness. More…

image African Solutions to World Problems: A Review of Kayode Oguntebi’s Viral Load

By Ayodele Ibiyemi 


  • Title: Viral Load
  • Author: Kayode Oguntebi
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 369
  • Year of publication: 2014
  • Category: Fiction

Viral Load is a thoughtful story of redemption and the limitless capacity of humanity for good. Although it examines various issues, every subplot features the triumph of good over evil. The story shows that flawed, though, humanity is, redemption can be absolute and altruism is good in itself. It is the story of many young Africans and one with a good ending. More…

image Predestination and the Human Experience

By Ofuonyeadi Chukwudumebi Mercy


  • Title: Hang No Clothes Here 
  • Author: Bolaji Olatunde
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 505
  • Year of publication: 2017
  • Category: Fiction

‘Out, out, brief candle!
Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing’. – Macbeth, Act V, Scene V

Hang No Clothes Here centres on the life and experiences of an assistant superintendent in the Nigeria Police Force, John Braimoh, and how he ends up. His quest to return to Abuja after being posted to Lagos leads him to become entangled in the world of drug dealing. His bosom friend and senior colleague, Dennis Omoruyi, tells him about two drug cartels, a new threat that they target in a bid to secure their places in the Force and remain in Abuja. However, their plan to eliminate this new threat boomerangs, and Braimoh is forced to spy for the cartels after a series of threats, kidnappings and torture. In a bid to disentangle himself from the mess he has gotten into, he makes many tough decisions. More…

image Overcoming Tribulations in Bukky Agboola’s I Made It Through

By Timi Odueso


  • Title: I Made It Through
  • Author: Bukky Agboola
  • Publisher: Winepress Publishing
  • Number of pages: 148
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Memoir

‘We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed’. – 2 Corinthians 4:8–9, New American Standard Bible

Memoirs – political, religious or otherwise – tend to portray the lives of those they are based on as miraculous collections of occurrences that proselytise ways in which the reader supposedly can achieve the grace, faith, happiness and/or success of the author. This is understandable. However, I Made It Through is unlike such. More…

image A Portrait of Socio-Political and Religious Cynicism in Olukorede S Yishau’s In the Name of Our Father

By Nureni Ibrahim 


  • Title: In the Name of Our Father
  • Author: Olukorede S Yishau
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 228
  • Year of publication: 2018
  • Category: Fiction

In the Name of Our Father, Olurokede S Yishau’s debut novel, illuminates the multidimensional issue of religious and political cynicism in Nigerian society, using the story-within-a-story technique. The first strand follows the travails of the protagonist, Prophet Jeremiah – formerly known as Alani – who sacrifices his spiritual and religious beliefs on the altar of materialism. The second strand centres on the brutalisation of the society during the long years of military despotism, as seen through the eyes of a journalist, Julius Omoeko. More…

image English as a Tool in Relating the African Experience

By Ofuonyeadi Chukwudumebi Mercy


  • Title: My Africa, My City: An Afridiaspora Anthology
  • Editor: Nana-Ama Kyerematen
  • Publisher: Winepress Publishing
  • Number of pages: 155
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Essays, Fiction, Poetry

In his collection of essays, Decolonising the Mind: The Politics of Language in African Literature, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o writes, ‘Language carries culture, and culture carries, particularly through orature and literature, the entire body of values by which we come to perceive ourselves and our place in the world’. English, acquired from European colonisers, has become a tool in bridging linguistic barriers between Africans. Chinua Achebe said in his essay, ‘The African Writer and the English Language’, ‘I feel that the English language will be able to carry the weight of my African experiences. But it will have to be a new English, still in full communion with its ancestral home, but altered to suit its new African surroundings’. In this light, English as used in African literature is not just what was bequeathed to us but a new Creole capable of relating the African experience. More…