Book Digest

Book Digest: Mamle Wolo, Aiwanose Odafen, Nincemon Fallé, Salena Godden

We wrap up book news for our readers in our regular Book Digest segment with books from Mamle Wolo, Aiwanose Odafen, Nincemon Fallé, and Salena Godden.

Ces soleils ardents by Nincemon Fallé

Publisher:  Jean-Claude Lattès
Date:  March 20, 2024
Genre:  Fiction
Language:  French
Where to find it:  Jean-Claude Lattès

Nincemon Fallé

Nincemon Fallé
Nincemon Fallé

Nincemon Fallé was born in eastern Cote D’Ivoire in 2002 and grew up between Bondoukou, Abidjan, Aboisso and Daloa. Today he lives in Abidjan, in the Yogoupon district. He wrote Ces soleils ardents, his first novel while working in a printing shop. Nincemon means in Guéré: “The fire is not extinguished”.

Ces soleils ardents (English: These Burning Suns)

Ces soleils ardents by Nincemon Fallé
Ces soleils ardents by Nincemon Fallé

Iro left his village to continue his studies in Abidjan. His friends, Thierry, Malick, Yeo and he form a happy, ambitious group, doing odd jobs in the streets of Abjamé and the corridors of the university campus. Of all of them, Iro is the most determined. But his father dies in the village and everything is turned upside down. He must face the memories of this man about whom he knows almost nothing. What life did his father have, what dreams were his, what did he give up? His certainties collapse, and new, more complex truths emerge that will allow Iro and his friends to chart their path and find a form of reconciliation and peace for themselves and their family. A magnificent novel which questions the heritage of fathers, the ambition of sons, these lines of tension, betrayal and love which cross generations and connect men. A magnificent novel which questions the heritage of the fathers, the ambition of the sons, the divide between the villages and their laws in the face of the freedoms and solitudes of the cities. It is a question of duty, of transmission, of revolt and reunion, of a young man who rises, emancipates himself, and at the same time finds himself.

Flying Through Water by Mamle Wolo

Publisher:  Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Date:  May 14, 2024
Genre:  Fiction, Children
Language:  English
Where to find it:  Hachette

Mamle Wolo

Mamle Wolo
Mamle Wolo

Mamle Wolo is the award-winning author of The Kaya Girl. She studied at the University of Cambridge and the University of Lancaster in the United Kingdom and is an Honorary Fellow in Writing of the University of Iowa. She writes fiction, poetry, and screenplays and lives with her family in Accra, Ghana.

Flying Through Water

Flying Through Water by Mamle Wolo
Flying Through Water by Mamle Wolo

For fans of A Long Walk to Water and Hatchet, this boy’s gripping journey from poverty to empowerment transports readers to modern-day Ghana, into the throes of an extraordinary survival story. Sena treasures his life in rural Ghana—playing soccer, working the family farm, striving to do his best at school—but he is increasingly aware of his family’s precarious security in the face of poverty. When an alluring gentleman comes to town to befriend local teenagers, offering promises of a better future, it only takes one more unsettling turn of events to send Sena into the clutches of human traffickers. Sena’s ordeal, escape, and remarkable survival makes for a page-turning adventure of self-discovery and empowerment.

We Were Once Girls by Aiwanose Odafen

Publisher:  Scribner UK
Date:  April 25, 2024
Genre:  Fiction
Language:  English
Where to find it:  Simon & Schuster,

Aiwanose Odafen

Aiwanose Odafen
Aiwanose Odafen

Aiwanose Odafen spent a better part of her life wanting to become an economist, an accountant, then an entrepreneur before she discovered her love for writing. She has contributed to published non-fiction works and participated in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Purple Hibiscus Trust Writing Workshop. She was longlisted for the 2020 Commonwealth Writers Short Story Prize and holds a postgraduate degree from the University of Oxford. When she’s not writing, she’s cheering for Manchester United or watching dramas.

We Were Once Girls

We Were Once Girls by Aiwanose Odafen
We Were Once Girls by Aiwanose Odafen

Ego, Zina and Eriife were always destined to be best friends, ever since their grandmothers sat next to each other on a dusty bus to Lagos in the late 1940s, forging a bond that would last generations. But over half a century later, Nigeria is a new and modern country. As the three young women navigate the incessant strikes and political turmoil that surrounds them, their connection is shattered by a terrible assault. In the aftermath, nothing will remain the same as life takes them down separate paths. For Ego, now a high-powered London lawyer, success can’t mask her loneliness and feelings of being an outsider. Desperate to feel connected to Nigeria, she escapes into a secret life online. Zina’s ambition is to be anyone but herself; acting proves the ultimate catharsis, but it comes at the cost of her family. And Eriife surprises everyone by morphing from a practising doctor to a ruthless politician’s perfect wife. When Ego returns home, the three women’s lives become entwined once more, as Nigeria’s political landscape fractures. Their shared past will always connect them, but can they – and their country – overcome it?

With Love, Grief and Fury by Salena Godden

Publisher:  Canongate Books
Date:  May 2, 2024
Genre:  Poetry
Language:  English
Where to find it:  Canongate Books

Salena Godden

Salena Godden
Salena Godden

Salena Godden is an award-winning author, poet and broadcaster of Jamaican-mixed heritage based in London. Her debut novel Mrs Death Misses Death won the Indie Book Award for Fiction and the People’s Book Prize, and was shortlisted for the British Book Awards and the Gordon Burn Prize. Godden has been shortlisted for the 4thWrite short story prize and the Ted Hughes Prize. Her work has been widely anthologised and broadcast on radio, TV and film. Her poem Pessimism is for Lightweights is on permanent display at the People’s History Museum, Manchester. She was inducted as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2022.

With Love, Grief and Fury

With Love, Grief and Fury by Salena Godden
With Love, Grief and Fury by Salena Godden

With Love, Grief and Fury contains love poems, for people and the planet; grief poems brimming with compassion, sharing tears and mourning what was and contemplating what could be; and poems of fire and fury that will kick some ass, tell the truth and inspire change and hope.

Over thirty years after she first stormed the UK poetry scene, the trailblazing and award-winning writer Salena Godden has produced her most audacious and definitive collection to date. Like a big sister’s arm around your shoulder, With Love, Grief and Fury is important and nourishing for the soul.

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