G.L.i.B

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G.L.i.B-bed: Quotes & Notes
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G.L.i.B – bed:The Carnivorous City
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G.L.i.B-bed: Everyman
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G.L.i.B -bed: Born a crime
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G.L.i.B-bed: Persuasion
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G.L.i.B-bed: Reading plan: More of Maya Angelou’s Autobiographies
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G.L.i.B-bed: Evil in the house
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G.L.i.B -bed: There’s nothing funny about war
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G.L.i.B – bed: The Islamist
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G.L.i.B-bed: The house my father built

G.L.i.B-bed: Quotes & Notes

Happy New Year! I have to stop this – waiting until half way through January before yelling ‘happy new year’ or making my first post. Now that is settled, onto the issue of this article. Can I say, for certain, that I’ve begun my rhythm of reading for 2018? I hesitate to do. Considering the books I aim to devour take time and space; they are mostly fiction and are intentional picks in my reading list. These, like an accident, happened upon me while spring – cleaning my bookshelf last year. I had planned to give them a cursory glance – they are compact, quote – packed and I’d be done in a flash. I had also planned to spend the month of January in a mind- charting, goal – setting manner in areas of career, writing/blogging, reading list, physical and mental and spiritual thrusts, etc. Organize all those December to – do lists and thoughts, and align them accordingly for 2018. Reading, if it occurred, would be the articles which caught my eye and interest off the internet and social media, as well as the notes I’ve compiled over the years on most of the text I’ve read. (Years[…]

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G.L.i.B – bed:The Carnivorous City

This was amongst the first set of books I read at the beginning of the year. But somehow, a post about it never made it onto the blog. Kindly read this article with that knowledge in mind. The title didn’t quite do it. I was just equal parts pissed. I didn’t know about the book and thrilled at the same time that I happened upon it the day I decided to buy my first set of novels for the year.  I was also ashamed to call myself a reading fan of Toni Kan’s. Of course, I hadn’t read any of his work in years but he was a Facebook friends and I followed his online news magazine – sabinews. I had been following him since his Hints Magazine days.  Soni is missing – the first line of the book – rang in my head throughout the time I was buried between its pages. Those three words determined every and any action of the plot, subplots and its characters. It shaped and unravelled the novel.  Half way through, I came to the sad realization that I might never ‘meet’ the larger- than- life Soni. His spirit, his words, his energy and[…]

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G.L.i.B-bed: Everyman

Everyman ends his life the same way; it’s the details of how he lived it that makes the difference. Back in school, Everyman was a play listed amongst required reading for one of my English drama course. I remember most of its contents in sketches(plays didn’t pique my interest back then), save for something about everyman billed to die and give account of his life. I think. Everyman ‘s life ends the same way; it’s the details of how he lived that’s different. This faded memory propelled me to this little red volume of work which I devoured in less than two days. “Alive with literary brilliance” according to the Sunday Times, it truly was with Roth’s magnificent writing style, evoking a constellation of emotions – sometimes simultaneously, other times one after the other. Based on a particular man’s life and his relationships and subsequent actions with family, friends and colleagues, it deviates from the play which uses allegorical characters, each personifying an abstract idea. The time lapse between my reading of both genres of the title , as well as my preference for prose over plays  tilts this compact volume heavily in my favour. The bonus being its well-[…]

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G.L.i.B -bed: Born a crime

Hands down my favourite stand- up comedian of recent times. His performances are not just witty or laugh-out- loud funny but also intelligent and pass on messages that deal with different aspects of the society – political, social, religious, trending news , etc. He can stretch an idea for so long and his art of mimicry is award worthy. This book , an autobiography, was as though I was sitting in on one of his sets – laughing at his jokes about his upbringing, learning  of his life as a coloured person in South Africa, and the boundless love of his mother. Though only sobering thoughts prevailed in the sections where apartheid’s evil, divisive, destructive and inhumane characteristics took up considerable space. Trevor Noah may be coloured with a loving, free – spirited, rebel for a mother, but the effects of the system still shaped his childhood.

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G.L.i.B-bed: Persuasion

This would be the first of James Borg’s works to feature in my reading list. And I had no expectations about it. Just a blank expression on my mind as I began to leaf through the red – covered volume. Time and again, British authors reiterate my conviction of my preference for their writing technique (and choice of words) over any of their other counterparts. Reading content created by a Briton elevates and educates me. I’m also left with a feeling of my time well – spent, my mind more exposed, my diction improved and increased, and my writing duly challenged. Strange though. Like most people around the world, I grew up under the weighted influence of American entertainment – cartoons, books, films, speech. And after almost four decades of conscious (and sometimes, unconscious) orientation, the British writers still hold taut my heartstrings to their style of penmanship. James Borg’s Persuasion is, like its title signals, all about the art of influencing people over to your point of view. Divided into 10 chapters, it delves into such topics geared towards making an influence of the reader – being a good listener, keeping attention, body language, good recall, telephone telepathy, negotiating[…]

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G.L.i.B-bed: Reading plan: More of Maya Angelou’s Autobiographies

There was a pervading feeling of déjà vu as I thumbed my way through I know Why the Caged Bird sings. It all became clear at the end; this was one of seven autobiographies, and I had just finished the third in the series. Interestingly, I wasn’t aware of this and Maya Angelou’s writing occupies a top spot in my ranking of phenomenal writing. How odd. No need extoling one of America’s (and indeed the world’s) greatest writers. More than enough has been said (and written) about her extraordinary penmanship that inspires, elevates, informs and celebrates. Instead of adding my ink and voice , I’d rather embark on a collection of her works to heartily digest (and constantly use them as terms of reference) and, hopefully, reflect such skill in my style and learning path.

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G.L.i.B-bed: Evil in the house

They say it’s when you become a parent, you realize your parents were right all along. As a mum, I’d rather be tagged paranoid than sorry when it concerns my children. Paranoia can be tamed; regret live with you for all time, and, sometimes, has unseen, far-reaching consequences. Now, I understand my mum’s obviously worried expressions, her statements about some male relatives and her caution when dealing with them. Family is not off limits when it comes to abuse of any kind – domestic, sexual or otherwise. After all, na who know man na im dey kill am. Yeside Kilanko’s novel reminds the reader how much closer to home evil can be lurking, and how, sometimes, unwittingly, unintentionally, we aid it ourselves through the entrance of extended family members into our lives. And it is one of the parents’ essential duty to shield their offspring from such familial devils. Without giving away necessary spoilers of the plot of this book which elicited contrasting emotions as I flipped over the pages, it would be difficult and constricting to write effectively about it. But I’d say this; the recent trend of women speaking up and out about all forms of abuse must[…]

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G.L.i.B -bed: There’s nothing funny about war

If I hadn’t listened to a review before reading this book, I’d have been blissfully unaware obtuse fact that Kyaffin, Farabiti and Samanja were English words spoken with an Hausa accent. Recounting the WWII experience through the eyes of young African/Nigerian soldiers was equal parts entertaining, sobering, hilarious and depressing. Ordinary fishermen, farmers, traders, most of whom mere teenagers, saw themselves transformed into soldiers of wars from their simple vocations. Their days of mundane working hours, filled with the occasional excitement, seemed a lifetime ago compared to their present situation of terror – filled days and bomb- blasting nights. There’s nothing funny about war. The hellish conditions on the battlefield. The Armageddon that erupts between the warring factions and fight for the ultimate win. Little sleep. Fear of life. Casualties. Diseases. Traps. Landmines… But somehow Biyi Bandele injects a sprinkling of humour and laughter alongside. Perhaps, it’s just as well. Fighting and surviving within breathing distance of intentional enemy fire is one of the most daunting feats any body can experience, capable of altering regular people physically, psychologically, emotionally. A little laughter, a little teasing can do a lot to retain humanity, sanity and purpose. Burma Boy delivers, in minute,[…]

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G.L.i.B – bed: The Islamist

With the rise of terrorism, ISIS and Boko Haram right here in our backyard, the choice to read this book was a no – brainer. With a subtitle like Why I joined radical Islam in Britain, what I saw and why I left, did I need any other compelling reason to dive into it head first? Nothing to lose and everything to gain. Though published exactly a decade ago, its contents are just as potent and relevant today (if not more) as they were at the time of release. And who better equipped to reveal the workings and process of radical Islam than a former ardent, active member of the group? Incredibly detailed and, often times, disquieting, the author chronicles his religious, educational and social choices spanning a period of ten years (from mid – teenage years to his early/mid – twenties). In so doing, he lays bare the inner, systematic indoctrination into Islamic extremism of young, impressionable minds; effectively using the foolproof strategy: Teach a child the way he should go and when he grows up, he would not depart from it.  The outcome of which have manifested in present day ISIS’ rampage, global terrorism and our very own[…]

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G.L.i.B-bed: The house my father built

After the unsated feeling left behind by Diary of a Dead Nigerian and Like a Mule bringing Ice Cream to the Sun, one would have thought I’d steer clear of small – sized novels. But neigh, the first read of this month, The House My Father Built by Adewale Maja – Pearce, fits perfectly into the little mould, and promptly leaving me with a sense of unfinifshedness (if there’s a word like that!) as the other two previous books did. Third time’s the charm, right? Perhaps I’m a sucker for short, well – written book. The pull to devour them always triumph over thick tomes with promises of more reading time. For me, it’s not how big; it’s how well – put together. And thirdly, (didn’t know I was counting), sadly, small novels tick all the right boxes for me. I am willing to risk the Oliver Twist’s feeling it would elicit when I turn the last page. No disappointment there. I was left wanting more after consuming the book in less than 48 hours. The landlord-tenant relationship in Nigeria is a rather unique one. At some point in time, the tenant could be mistaken for the owner of the[…]

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