image The Truth Will Set Your Soul Free

By Timi Odueso


  • Title: Death and the King’s Grey Hair
  • Author: Denja Abdullahi
  • Publisher: Kraft Books Limited
  • Number of pages: 62
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Drama

Drama, in Nigeria at least, has gained notoriety for being the least indulged genre in being written and being read. Although acted on stages occasionally, the genre in its documented form is less indulged in by readers and one of the reasons for this, perhaps, is because many playwrights often wrap the plot lines of their plays around political drama. Of the eleven longlisted plays for the 2018 Nigeria NLNG Prize for Literature, more than half dwelt on political themes, notably Jude Idada’s Sankara, Dul Johnson’s Melancholia and the winning play, Embers by Soji Cole. More…

image Delaying the Evil Day

By Ayodele Ibiyemi 


  • Title: Maybe Tomorrow
  • Author: Soji Cole
  • Publisher: Kraft Books Limited
  • Number of pages: 79
  • Year of publication: 2013
  • Category: Drama

One of the issues attracting the attention of contemporary Nigerian authors is the environmental crisis in the Niger Delta. It is a crisis of several dimensions. Both native and non-native writers have appraised the issue. In drama, Ahmed Yerima’s Hard Ground, which won several literary prizes, remains one of the most lucid literary representations of the region. No group is spared in the play as the dynamics of the crisis is explored. In Maybe Tomorrow, Soji Cole, despite being from another part of Nigeria’s Southern region, takes the issues addressed in Hard Ground further. The play, like Hard Ground, is published under the same Kraftgriots Series and it is deeper and more insightful with its efficient use of history. More…

image Live Life before You Leave It

By Omotola Otubela


  • Title: Matric Rage
  • Author: Genna Gardini
  • Publisher: uHlanga Publishers
  • Number of pages: 88
  • Year of publication: 2015
  • Category: Poetry

‘Trust the fact that it is alright for you to be telling your story if it is not hurting anyone who did not hurt you in the first place. In addition, I think that when you write something, you need to hear what it sounds like to see if it works. If you do not hear the rhythm of it then it’s dead. It’s flat’. – Genna Gardini

Genna Gardini won the 2012 DALRO New Coin Poetry Prize. She was also chosen as one of Mail & Guardian’s Top 200 Young South Africans for 2013. Her plays, WinterSweet (2012) and Scrape (2013), both won the Standard Bank Ovation Awards. Her poems have also been published widely. More…

image Weaving the Past, Present and Future

By Nureni Ibrahim 


  • Title: Can Anything Good Come Out of History?
  • Author: Obaro Ikime
  • Publisher: Bookcraft
  • Number of pages: 321
  • Year of publication: 2018
  • Category: Essays

Obaro Ikime, historian and retired professor of the University of Ibadan, hopes to fill a lacuna in the library of accessible and extensive works of historical knowledge with this masterpiece, Can Anything Good Come Out of History?. He sets out to document a historical ethnography of Nigeria and provides us with an astounding overview of political occurrences from the time of the colonial administration to the present. The array of themes explored can be separated into three interwoven strands: an examination of the manners and expectations of the political administrators; the ideas of unity and cooperation juxtaposed with division; the fundamental need to incorporate history in the educational curriculum. More…

image A Review of Martin Aliker’s Autobiography

By Ofuonyeadi Chukwudumebi Mercy


  • Title: The Bell Is Ringing  
  • Author: Martin Aliker
  • Publisher: Fountain Publishers
  • Number of pages: 251
  • Year of publication: 2018
  • Category: Autobiography 

History has always been of great relevance. Every society needs to be well informed of past events in order to tackle the various vital aspects that make up its present. Knowing full well the relevant role history plays in society, Martin Aliker, an elder statesman in Uganda, uses his autobiography, The Bell Is Ringing, to relate his account of the historical development of his country. Born during the colonial era of the then British Protectorate of Uganda, coupled with his father’s position in the country, Aliker possesses first class information on both colonial and post-colonial Uganda. More…

image The Road to Survival and Happiness

By Veronica Elias Ugian


  • Title: Flame and Song
  • Author: Phillipa Namutebi Kabali-Kagwa
  • Publisher: Modjaji Books
  • Number of pages: 189
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Memoir

‘To put the world in order, we must first put the nation in order; to put the nation in order, we must put the family in order; to put the family in order, we must cultivate our personal life; and to cultivate our personal life, we must first set our hearts right’. – Confucius

In 2016, the Ugandan author, Philippa Namutebi Kabali-Kagwa, published a memoir on family, memories and survival during the periods of political violence in Uganda. Weaving poetry and prose to narrate her journey from birth to adulthood, all the circumstances that surrounded her and her family and how they were able to live through political violence, she shows that sometimes home is not about places or aura but about people, and maybe we can make people our homes. More…

image 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…

image Appraising the Bliss of Innocence

By Ayodele Ibiyemi 


  • Title: Deserted
  • Author: Bob G Kisiki
  • Publisher: Rhema Books
  • Number of pages: 218
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Fiction

For Uganda, long years of dictatorship seem to have affected the volume of literature produced, which in any case focuses heavily on politics in the way South Africans focused on apartheid. Bob Kisiki, with four published novels, cannot be called a new author even though he does not enjoy the continent-wide fame that some of his contemporaries do. A complete man of the arts, he also writes songs, plays and newspaper columns, as well as short stories and poems. More…

image Poems of Despair, Love, Laughter and Death

By Timi Odueso


  • Title: A Parliament of Owls
  • Author: Adipo Sidang
  • Publisher: Contact Books NRB
  • Number of pages: 286
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Poetry

With 193 poems spread over four sections, Adipo Sidang’s A Parliament of Owls offers the prospect of universal inclusion with several poems that readers of every class or gender can connect with. More…

image The Leap from the African Bush to the City of Readers

By Munah Nicola Tarpeh


  • Title: Mr Hare Meets Mr Mandela
  • Author: Chris van Wyk
  • Illustrator: Paddy Bouma
  • Publisher: Jacana Media (Pty) Ltd
  • Number of pages: 30
  • Year of publication: 2016
  • Category: Children

‘Those who cannot read repeat their mistakes over and over…and so will you again’. – Mr Lion

Mr Hare Meets Mr Mandela by Chris van Wyk, a South African award-winning poet, short story writer and author of children’s books, deals with multiple themes like patriotism, bravery and the importance of being literate. These are complex themes that are presented in a very simple and humorous manner to teach children their importance.  More…