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“… Death as a concept is not special. Its ordinariness is, in fact, amusing.”- Ayo Sogunro

The Book

It is a collection of 14 short stories accompanied with poems before each chapter. The book revolves around societal injustices, corruption and explores how it is embedded in the Nigerian society. The stories move seamlessly between recurring issues from upheavals in Nigerian politics to troubles faced on daily basis and their damaging consequences. Most of the stories feature graphic and violent deaths. To some, Nigerians have the sort of mentality or the character to ‘endure everything’ and the book explores a lot of undercurrent emotions that is not necessarily expressed in day-to-day life. The narrative of the book is excellent and themes (the likes of corruption, power, love, death) explored are really relevant. Ayo Sogunro is an excellent writer in this regard! It is neither over nor under descriptive as the reader still gets a rich picture of the stories.

Thoughts

  • The stories were gripping and shocking. You don’t know what form of death to expect.
  • Asides the last two chapters, the stories were neither too lengthy nor too short and Sogunro did a great job of captivating the readers’ mind with the necessary amount of imagery.
  • The stories carried you along and it seemed like you were the invisible companion who saw their joys and sufferings but couldn’t change or adjust their situations when necessary.
  • Sometimes you never know how twisted the human mind is. Hobbes ideas of human nature is brought to mind as for some characters in the book, the utmost priority is survival/ betterment of their situation which, they struggle to achieve at all cost. Self-interest prevails over morality as the idea of what is good or bad is ignored. (We kinda sighted some Machiavellian ideas)
  • You feel sympathetic towards the plight of certain characters but at the same time you still find yourself judging them based on your notion of morality.
  • Some stories from the book depicted an accurate picture of the average Nigerian mentality and issues that still prevail (jungle justice, beheading for rituals etc.).
  • If you are a quote-whore like us, you would love this book because there are eye-catching quotes you would love to pen down.

The Disagreement corner

We both found the poems before each chapter refreshing but disagreed on its importance. My co-reviewer felt it was a bit distracting and confessed to skipping them at some point. “I just wanted to get to the next story,” she said.

Rating: 4/5. We definitely recommend it!

“Peace is just a fallacy by those at the top. Justice—there’s no such thing. Full stop.”

After years (exaggeration) of procrastination, we finally finished editing and put this up! 😂😅

With Love From Ola & Mahmoudat💋xoxo

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