Thursday, May 10, 2007

Of course, I cannot be restrained from buying something when in a bookshop. Tuesday's book launch meant I not only picked up Wole Soyinka's YOU MUST SET FORTH AT DAWN, but also:

THE BOOK OF CHAMELEONS by Jose Eduardo Agualusa
Felix Ventura is a man with an unusual occupation. If your lineage isn't sufficiently distinguished, he'll change that for you. If your family history isn't quite as glorious as you'd like, Felix Ventura can make you a new one. Felix Ventura is a seller of pasts.

The Yacoubian Building - once grand, but now dilapidated - stands on one of Cairo's main boulevards. Taha, the doorman's son, has aspirations beyond the slum in the skies, and dreams of one day becoming a policeman. He studies hard, and passes all the exams, but when he is rejected because his family is neither rich nor influential, the bitterness sets in. His girlfriend, Busyana, finds herself unable to earn a living without also providing sexual services for the men who hire her. When Taha seeks solace in a student Islamic organisation, the pressure mounts, and he is drawn to actions with devastating consequences.

And last, but not least (with the finest cover of the year), MEASURING TIME by one of my favourite authors, Helon Habila
Mamo and LaMamo are twin brothers living in a small Nigerian village, where their domineering father controls their lives. With high hopes the twins attempt to flee from home, but only LaMamo escapes to live their dream of becoming a soldier. Mamo, the awkward, sickly twin, is doomed to remain in the village. Gradually, he comes out of his father’s shadow and gains local fame as a historian, embarking on a ‘true’ history of his people. But when the rains fail and famine rages, religious zealots incite the people to violence – and LaMamo returns to fight the enemy at home.

(Book descriptions in this post are from the individual publishers, and are not mine).

They look delicious.



Blogger Viljoens in Cyprus said...

Hi Nichola,

I would like to read your blog more often, but I find it soooo intimidating. I love books, but I am a poor reader. I am a good inventor of excuses not to read, such as Adult Attention Deficit Disorder, Disorganized Time management Skills Disorder, Parent of two little busybodies (disorder) Mood disorder (Telling myself I'm not in the mood, or I have to wait for the right mood), but I think it all comes down to laziness. Perhaps, once I have dealt with being intimidated, I'll try to retrain myself to become a reader (again). Keep up the good blog and fond regards to Giri.


11:56 am  
Blogger Lotus Reads said...

I recently read a really nice review for "The Yacoubian Building" so that is definitely going on my list of TBR's and thank you also for reminding me that I've been wanting to read "You Must Set Forth At Dawn". Enjoy your books!

4:47 pm  
Blogger equiano said...

Gerhard - for myself I ask do I really want to do housework now? and of course the answer is always no, so I get to read instead! I hope you don't really mean it is "intimidating", just because you don't have time to read right now, doesn't mean you can't have a squizz at what others are reading, without guilt! Enjoy the sunshine where you are.

Lotus, I've had a few reminders of things over on your blog recently, like the Dorothy Baingana you reviewed, that I've meant to read for a while too - thanks.

11:31 am  

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