Posted in Book Reviews

A Broken People’s Playlist by Chimeka Garricks: A Review

Photo Credit: Me!

A beautiful, heart-rending collection of stories written some in the first person or second person narrative, linked by love, family, happiness, trauma and every spicy detail of human life particularly as a Nigerian.

This is a collection of 12 stories that touch quite a lot of themes but centres on the feeling, Pain. Chimeka is an amazing writer, his wordplay is smooth, he leaves you wanting more, some stories were intertwined and there were lessons to learn.

The stories were also named after songs which according to Chimeka inspired him to write, the book is accompanied by a playlist you can listen to on Spotify, that’s genius I must say and I so love music.

The first story, Lost stars focused on the final acceptance of love and eternal loss.

Music was about family drama masked with music as a coping mechanism. Loving one despite their failures. We see a man who leaves his wife for another and is pardoned because everyone feels ‘his eyes go well because his new woman is beautiful’

In Hurt, we meet Dami, a self-destructive man ,with a life full of love, hate and the regrets of lost time.

Song for someone: Ukela living with so much pain, finding love and finally learning to let go.

In the city broke my heart, our sad reality in Nigeria, this book was written before the #Endsars protest which occurred in Nigeria, October 2020, which hoped to stop the activities of unjust police officers practice but to date, there is no significant change. We meet Officer Eneche who feels he is haunted in his dreams due to all the wrongs he has committed, we see his deeds and I wonder why he is surprised he is being haunted?

In I put a spell on you, we meet cheating husbands and wives whonise superstitious charms to keep their men, quite a funny tale.

I’d die without you, another sad one, grief, pain and the aftermath of wrong choices. Made me feel like this was a foretelling of one of Nigeria’s leading actresses, Adesua Etomi Wellington experience in the past year.

In Beautiful war, we meet the truthful cheating husbandπŸ˜‚, the irony. His road to acceptance and forgiveness, the thought that men will always be men so we shouldn’t expect them to not cheat.

In River, we see confraternities, mistaken identity, death and grief.

Love’s Divine and Desperado, Tekwashi, a drunk on the road to sobriety, challenges of men who are sexually defiled as minors and the emotional impact, this was a really good one

Finally, You suppose know, my second favourite story, the type of love I want to experience and live.

These stories were written uniquely, it was written to see things from different perspectives as men and women. Each story had its unique points, easy to understand, you fall in love with the characters despite the short scenes.

You would love this book, I attended a book reading session with the author at Bookville world bookshop in Port-Harcourt. A sweet and interesting discussion, healthy debate and an awesome day.

The author, Chimeka Garricks and I

I got my copy autographed too and picked some books..

Hopefully, I get to go out more and share the deets! Buy this book, you won’t regret it. You can pick one from Roving Heights, Buy books in Port-Harcourt or any other book shop!

Till next time!

Posted in Book Club Reads

The Blessed Girl by Angela Makholwa: A Review

With settings and author South African, The blessed girl is my first South African read and it was an awesome book. A chick-lit, breezy but heavily themed book, a different tone from the usual chick lits and an engaging read.

We are introduced to the lead character, Bontle.The beginning pages were quite boring, I was getting exasperated with, Bontle. Bontle is a nut case and a ‘blessed girl’; these are ladies who live a luxurious lifestyle sponsored by men especially ones they sleep with, the men are called ‘blessers’.

I can see you already judging her πŸ˜‚, yeah did that too, but as the story came along I had to remove every judgemental thought and enjoy the story.

Bontle’s life is a crazy one, the story is written like a letter to the reader, where she narrates how amazing life has been for her or not.

Bontle comes from the slum, her mum runs a bar and she has decided to live a life filled with glamorous things money can buy but is she really satisfied and what exactly is she hoping to achieve in life? We are taken through her life as a businesswoman, a contractor, her bougie life and managing four men ‘blessers’.

Bontle is a selfish, conniving bitch who isn’t ashamed of the heights she can attain to get what she wants, you will judge her definitely, I mean we are humans and who wouldn’t, she did the most while being married.

We meet everyone who influences Bontle’s life, Golokile, ‘her brother’, her mum, her husband, Ntokozo, her friends Iris and Tsholo. What happens when she meets Iris’s blesser, Mr Emmanuel?

Told as a story from a tabloid you would uncover Bontle’s layers, experience her life and understand why she made her choices. A lot of lessons to be learnt, two which stuck the most were how we shouldn’t always judge people without understanding their situation and the effect of blessers to the young mind. Apparently, in South Africa, there was an upsurge of men ‘blessers’ who were enticing the young girls and abandoning them with different problems.

I loved how at the end, Bontle gets her life a bit sorted out and every situation in her life comes full circle. The author Angela has a way with words, I loved the infusion of South African names, exclamations and how fun it was to read this book.

Despite being a light read, this book touches on a lot of strong themes. From depression, teenage pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, sex trafficking to parenting, patriarchy and so on.

Bontle is a gorgeous, intelligent, smart woman, who lives a rich, fast life, from body enhancements to living in high rise buildings, dinners, juggling blessers to experiencing the reality of life. You would love it.

This was the book clubs read of may and we loved it, Bontle made everyone crazy but in the end, we loved her, well some of usπŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚, you would too. To get a copy, you can place an order at Roving Heights or Bookmarket NG.

Till the next post! Don’t forget to tag me when you read any book posted on the blog so we can discuss it!

I will be attending a book reading of A broken people’s playlist by Chimeka Garricks and here’s hoping it would be an exciting one, a blog post on the book will be up soon! Bye!!