Welcome to Memory Lane Mondays!
This is a weekly feature of unforgettable books I have read in times past which have not had the chance to be reviewed on this blog as I read them a long time ago. Lets’ call them my personal classics. I will be featuring a new favorite every week and I hope you will be interested to read and enjoy some as I have.
This week’s pick is….
‘Nights of a Creaking Bed‘ by Toni Kan
This collection of short stories is close to my heart because it is the first collection I ever read that opened my heart up to reading short stories. I never really liked reading short story collections because I felt that they were too abrupt and most of the stories didn’t develop as I would have like but this book changed my view of them. Some of the stories in this collection have remained with me all these years (I first read this book soon after it was published in 2008) and I believe this is the beauty of good story telling. Although a bit dark, the stories reflect the harsh realities of a spectrum of people, struggling with one tragedy or the other. ‘Nights of a Creaking Bed’ is well written with vivid characters that will never leave your mind. If you haven’t read this collection, I recommend you do.
Nights of the Creaking Bed is full of colorful characters involved in affecting dramas: a girl who is rejected in love because she has three brothers to look after; a middle aged housewife who finds love again but has an impossible decision to make; a young man who can’t get the image of his naked, beautiful mother out of his mind; a child so poor he has to hawk onions on Christmas day – and many others. Some, initially full of hope, find their lives blighted by the cruelty of others, or by being in the wrong place at the wrong time, or by just not knowing the “right” people.
Corruption, religious intolerance, gratuitous violence, the irresponsible attitudes of some men to their offspring and the importance of joy are some of the big themes that underlie this memorable collection.
New Cover/Edition, Published April 20, 2019.
Toni Kan is the author of four critically acclaimed works of fiction and poetry, including The Carnivorous City (Cassava Republic, 2016). Kan was the winner of the NDDC/Ken Saro Wiwa Literature Prize (2009), awarded by the Association of Nigerian Authors. Kan, a managing partner at Radi8, an ideas company, is also publisher of sabinews.com and a fellow of the Heinrich Boll Stiftung, Civitella Ranieri and Yaddo. He lives in Lagos.
Published: May 1, 2008 by Cassava Republic Press
Genre: Short Stories
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