Thursday, December 27, 2012


I know all of us are still in a celebration mood, including me. I had actually thought that I will be off writing and blogging till next year but like bees drawn to the honey comb so is a writer drawn to writing.
Anyways one of my Christmas presents from my darling Temi was Chinua Achebe's new novel "There Was A Country". Now people who know me, know that even though I am an avid reader its only recently I started reading a lot of novels by Nigerian authors, even though I read "CHIKE AND THE RIVER, THINGS FALL APART", I still wasn't an avid reader of Achebe's works.

I don't know if I can say this of a renowned author, but I will anyway: as a writer Achebe has greatly improved. This is how I see his writing now: it's as though he writes for a wider audience. It's as though he writes for the readers in China as well as readers in America at the same time. He can take an Ibo proverb and describe it using America/British terms. I am greatly impressed as I hope that this novel becomes a bestseller topping a lot of the big authors in writing history. I have also learnt that Chinmamanda Adiche writes a lot like Achebe.. Very Impressive.

Although I am not through with the book I am learning a lot about Nigerian history and the events that took place before I was born. It saddens me to think that history has been removed from all our secondary schools. I think that history should be compulsory in all secondary schools in Nigeria up until A'  levels, instead of maths or English. Oh well that's a topic for another day.

I also think that all the minor ethnic groups in Nigeria should start developing works of fiction laced with our rich history and culture granting our Nigerian/African all over the world the opportunity to know about African folklore's, myths, history, culture like they do about the Greek mythology.

Before I go I will leave you with some excerpts of the book that I have found very intriguing:

Page 93:

"I received my scholarship to study medicine at Ibadan. I wanted to be in the arts but felt the pressure to choose medicine instead. After a year of work I changed to English, history and theology, but by so doing I lost the bursary and was left with the prospect of paying tuition"

(Now for me this is determination. It is sad that parents still pressure their children to study courses they don't really have a flare for. Someone asked this question on face book: if you had the opportunity to be 18 again what will you do all over, a lot of people talked about following their dreams and not studying what daddy or mummy wanted them to study).

Page 95:

"After graduation I did not have to worry about where I would go next. The system was so well organized that as we left university most of us were instantly absorbed into the civil service, academia, business or industry. We trusted-I did, anyway-the country and its rulers to provide this preparatory education and then a job to serve my nation. I was not disappointed".

(hmmm this cannot be said about the Nigeria of today as it is so difficult getting a job right out of university. What happened? And how can this be fixed? Topic for another day)

Anyways as I read along or maybe in any of my post I will try and post little excerpts from his book.
I must go now as I have to still be in the celebration mode, not with a laptop on top of my laps and jamming away.

Merry Christmas folks and a Happy new year.