Book Club

Waila Reads: Imagine This

Imagine you were born in England. Thirteen months after you were born, your parents marriage falls apart. You and your brother are thrown into the care system and are lucky enough to be caught by loving foster parents. You live happily with your foster parents and brother. You see your father every now and again but that’s okay. Your world is sunny, your future looks bright. Eight odd years roll on by. One day you father shows up for a visit and before you have time to comprehend what is happening, you find yourself in your a village in western Nigeria with your grandparents, uncles, aunties, cousins and other members of your extended family whom you’ve never met. Life as you once knew it changes irrevocably.


Imagine This, written by Sade Adeniran, was a random discovery. I stumbled on it while searching for another book on Amazon. I’d never heard of the author but as you know, I’m on a mission to explore African Literature (I hate that term by the way) so I coughed up £9 for a copy. It was £9 well spent. The book is a journal of the experiences of a young girl Lola, whose life is turned on its head when her father, afraid of permanently losing parental rights over her and her brother, all but hijacks them from their foster home and whisks them off to their village in western Nigeria to be raised by his extended family. The journal chronicles Lola’s slightly sweet, largely bitter experience of village life, her dysfunctional relationship with her Father and her struggle for survival in the new world she find herself in.  

As always, read and tell me what you think!



Waila Reads: “The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives”

Someone’s been doing an awful lot of reading lately. I’ve always been an avid reader but over the last three months I’ve been averaging two books a week. I feel like I’ve entered a reading competition only I’m not sure what the prize is. It’s probably just a phase but while it lasts, I’m making the most of it.

For my fellow readers, I thought I’d recommend a few books for you to read. One at a time though; I don’t want to bombard or bankrupt you.

I considered reviewing each book on my list but I thought I’d keep my opinions to myself. Some of them are brilliant reads and others somewhat lacklustre but I’ll let you make up your own minds.

Consider this an online book club of sorts and please, don’t hesitate to recommend any books you think I ought to read.

The first book I recommend is ‘The Secret  Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives.’  It is written by Lola Shoneyin, a poet and novelist I recently discovered. If you have any thoughts on this book, please post them as comments on this entry. I really want to know what other people think of it.

Go on, get reading!!


Waila Caan


I love all three covers but my favourite is the one on the right, which is the Nigerian cover. The one on the left is the US cover and in the middle, the UK cover.