Book Review: Nearly All the Men in Lagos are Mad by Damilare Kuku

This is one of my highly anticipated reads for this year. First, because of the title and secondly because it is by an author I haven’t read any of her work and I always look forward to discovering new authors.

Nearly All The Men In Lagos Are Mad’ is a collection of 12 short stories that capture some of the different kinds of “Mad Men” you will find in Lagos, Nigeria. This was a quick read I gobbled up in one sitting because I found many of the stories captivating and relatable. Most of the stories sounded familiar because they have either happened to someone I know or to someone I have heard about. Although, these stories carry strong themes, some were still witty like ‘International Relations’. There were also some stories, ‘A Lover’s Vendetta’ and ‘Independence Day’ I am glad were told in this collection because I believe they are important narratives that bring to the fore issues around infertility in marriage and the trauma that rape victims go through. I also loved the fact that some of the female characters although “played” by Lagos men where able to “receive some sense” and do the needful.

‘My favorite stories include ‘Beard Gang‘, ‘Independence Day’, ‘First Times’, ‘Ode-Pus Complex’ and ‘International Relations‘ while my favorite characters were Deborah in ‘Beard Gang’, Mrs Umeh in Ode-Pus Complex and Shike in ‘International Relations’. However, I felt a few stories didn’t quite sit as pretty as others in terms of their plot and character development. Nevertheless, this is a fabulous book for a debut and the author deserves all the accolades that are already coming with the publication of this book. Congratulations Damilare. I recommend!

Rating: 4 Stars

Published: Masobe Books

Pages: 243

Genre: Short Stories Collection


The Author:

Damilare is a creative artist who has worked as a radio presenter, scriptwriter, film producer, and director.

She holds both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the Arts, and hopes to start a PhD. (also, in the Arts) someday, and maybe teach. Currently, she is best-known as an actor in Film (including The Set Up and Chief Daddy); Television (including Season 1 of Ebony Life’s Castle and Castle and Africa Magic’s Unbroken); and Stage (including Kakadu the Musical and Ewa). As a child, she was drawn to the enduring magic of books, and saw writers as spell casters. Naturally, she was entranced to become one.

‘Nearly all the Men in Lagos are Mad’ is her first published book.


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