Reading has been my hobby since i discovered books had the power to make us travel around the world without a ticket. Mum had loads of books the first book i remember was one that had Monkey Dey Walk Bamboo Dey Chop written on it. Now, I do not know if that was the title but i remember the cover was red with women wearing Afro’s.
Sadly I never got to read it, cause I could not find it. Many times I wonder if that book ever existed or it was a figment of my imagination.
Since I could not find the red book, I moved on to Peter and Jane the Ladybird series, out grew those kids and found Captain Africa in the Vanguard newspaper cartoon section. I and my siblings always looked out for this section. I evolved to Enid Blyton spent my days as the school library prefect reading all her books. They always made me smile.
There was one that had a guy with the name Rufus, I wondered what kind of name is that? There were comics too. Book fairs made our day we would get new books.Pretty soon I started reading anything that I could find. Mum warned me children did not read everything but that never stopped me.
Holidays in Igobdo my mum’s village were always exciting. It literally rained books. The Passport of Mallam Ilia, The Drummer Boy, Tales Tiv Tell, An African Night Entertainment (this book gave me chills), we devoured them all.
Then came Mariam Ba’s, So long a Letter. This was my first serious book. As a kid i could not really understand the theme of the book but I remember feeling it was wrong for someone to get married behind one’s wife’s back. I had an attraction to the the main characters friend Ramatoulaye who did not accept polygamy and therefore left her husband.
Working on a piece on African Feminists, I came across Ama Ataa Aidoo. Ghana’s literary icon. So i researched her and came across her talks on you-tube. Her talks and interviews were not only insightful but also entertaining. I fell in love with her instantly. She’s witty, sharp and original, someone we would like to have as a grandma.
Her books and plays focus on the contemporary African woman and the choices we have to make. Everybody has been raving about her book Changes which I tried to get a free download but could not. Yeah I am all for free books. Anyway I saw it on Konga but probably will check stores in town first before I order online.
How did your reading journey begin?What new authors have you discovered recently ? Do drop a comment.