All posts by Ekemini Pius

Having Doves for Supper

By Ekemini Pius


  • Title: No More the Taming Hawks
  • Author: ’Diran Ademiju-Bepo
  • Publisher: Dynasty Gold Impact Books
  • Number of pages: 79
  • Year of publication: 2018
  • Category: Drama

’Diran Ademiju-Bepo’s play, No More the Taming Hawks, serves as a timely reminder that drama is not dead, and that prose and poetry have not entirely overrun the Nigerian literary scene. The play itself was longlisted for the 2018 NLNG Prize for Literature and is the final book in a trilogy; the first book, Rhythm of the Wind, was presented at the Nigerian Universities Theatre Arts Festival in 1990. More…

When Systems Fail Us

By Ekemini Pius


  • Title: The Honking
  • Author: Mulumba Ivan Matthias
  • Publisher: Mattville Publishing House
  • Number of pages: 311
  • Year of publication: 2017
  • Category: Fiction

Set in Uganda, Mulumba Ivan Matthias’s The Honking examines the breakdown in human relationships and social systems, and how this leads to failure in the lives of individuals, in particular, and society, in general. More…

When Things Fall Apart

By Ekemini Pius 


  • Title: Den of Inequities
  • Author: Kinyanjui Kombani
  • Publisher: Longhorn Publishers
  • Number of pages: 188
  • Year of publication: 2013
  • Category: Fiction

Den of Inequities is a subtle satire that interrogates the problems of Kenyan society, just like Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o’s excellent novel, Wizard of the Crow. Kinyanjui Kombani weaves this story around the lives of three characters – Omosh, Gosti and Aileen – through whom we are made to understand the lives of the ordinary people of Nairobi and the failure of the Kenyan government on different levels. One reason Kombani deserves a lot of praise for this historical novel is because this is exactly the kind of blazing attack on the government that forced Ngũgĩ into exile when Kenya was still under a dictatorship. Even though this novel was published in 2013, when Kenya had transitioned to a democracy and writers who criticise the government are not persecuted as fiercely as before, it takes some guts to attack a powerful government with literature. More…

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…

For God and Country

By Ekemini Pius 


  • Title: From the Crevices of Corps Hearts
  • Author: Chinyere Chukwudi-Okeh
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 148
  • Year of publication: 2017
  • Category: Fiction

There is nothing quite as refreshing as when a writer creates a new path for fiction to travel, nothing as scintillating as when a writer overcomes the temptation to follow conventional paths and instead has the courage to give fiction a new, sublime stretch of asphalt to ride on. In this exciting collection, Chinyere Chukwudi-Okeh weaves ten short stories around the National Youth Service, a mandatory one-year scheme for Nigerian graduates of tertiary institutions in Nigeria and abroad. What makes it a beautiful debut is her ability to lay bare the problems of Nigeria, yet hide them in the stories and experiences of corps members. More…

Withering like a Raisin in the Sun

By Ekemini Pius 


  • Title: African Son
  • Author: Wambalye Weikama
  • Publisher: KHAMEL Publishing
  • Number of pages: 193
  • Year of publication: 2015
  • Category: Fiction

Wambalye Weikama’s African Son is a heart-rending story about Simon and his twin, Anna, who grow up in Uganda. Simon dreams of studying business at the University of Washington, USA. His dream comes true and he is offered admission. When he arrives in America, the first thing he notices is the racial discrimination. His white classmates see him as underprivileged, the poor African who ‘had to work to make ends meet and was in this school by way of philanthropy’. Most of his classmates think he needs to feel accepted, so they flatter him with charitable comments about his accent and their love for Africa. Weikama uses these scenes to delicately reveal the repressive racial conditions Africans have to deal with while studying abroad, and how the portrayal of America as a flawless paradise by Africans who have never been there is untrue. More…