Fiction

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 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…

image 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…

image The Miracle of Friendship

By Veronica Elias Ugian 


  • Title: The Square Pegs
  • Author: David Obasa
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 190
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Fiction

David Obasa’s The Square Pegs is a novel that spans the journey from childhood through adulthood to old age of three protagonists. More…

image A Review of Across the Gulf by Dul Johnson

By Omotola Otubela 


  • Title: Across the Gulf 
  • Author: Dul Johnson
  • Publisher: SEVHAGE Publishers
  • Number of pages: 240
  • Year of publication: 2017
  • Category: Fiction

Regardless of the world-acclaimed recognition African novels have received over the years, their aesthetic and artistic worth is still subject to debate. This is because in depicting the African experience of slavery, war and colonialism, it is difficult to avoid clichés. However, a number of contemporary writers such as Dul Johnson have made conscious efforts to incorporate these issues in their works in such a way that they not only reflect the African past but serve as an eye-opener to the strangulating effect of these tragic historical incidents, in the process helping to prevent them from reoccurring. Across the Gulf is one such effort. It follows other works by the same author, including Shadows and Ashes, Why Women Won’t Make It to Heaven, Melancholia and Deeper into the Night. More…

image 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…

image Vacuum and Spaces: Falling into Space in Pever X’s Cat Eyes

By Victor Udochi Iwueze-Elias 


  • Title: Cat Eyes 
  • Author: Pever X
  • Publisher: NWS Publishers
  • Number of pages: 263
  • Year of publication: 2014
  • Category: Fiction

‘In a full heart, there is room for everything, and in an empty heart there is room for nothing’. – Antonio Porchia

Pever X’s first novel, Cat Eyes, is one of the flagship novels of the Nigerian Writers’ Series (NWS) – a reenactment of the defunct African Writers’ Series by Heinemann – by the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), and first runner-up for the 2013 ANA Prize for Prose Fiction. It chronicles the psychological journey of Pededoo Boor Jnr, who struggles with a cocktail of emotions when his father returns home from a protracted stay in America. His father is accompanied by Adelaide and Melissa-Jane Sanders, whose presence and feline-coloured eyes fuel the flames of indignation roiling within him. More…

image Ẹkúndayọ̀: From Sorrow to Joy

By Munah Nicola Tarpeh


  • Title: Thorns in My Boots 
  • Author: Awoleye Ayokunle Dominic
  • Publisher: Parrésia Publishers Ltd
  • Number of pages: 153
  • Year of publication: 2017
  • Category: Fiction

They say the rose flower also has thorns, but my life was just merely thorns, all the flowers were withered. They say it is he that wears the shoe that knows where it pinches; I decided not to wear just a shoe but boots. But my boots were full of thorns and it pinched me all over.

Thorns in My Boots is the short, gripping tale of a young man, Ojo, and his struggle for identity as he wrestles to restore his family’s dignity. The death of his father, a palmwine tapper and dipsomaniac, when he was only two years old leaves only him and his mother, a petty trader. He grows up with a strong sense of determination to complete anything he sets his mind to, hence his childhood moniker, ‘wa pa mi l’oni’, meaning you will have to kill me to stop me. More…