popular
Photo by Maxine l. Moore

Bassey Ikpi’s Literary Debut on Her Mental Health Journey Is a Call for People To See Themselves, and Others, With Genuine Empathy

We speak with the Nigerian-American writer and ex-poet about her book that challenges us to rethink mental health challenges.

Bassey Ikpi is the Nigerian-American writer whose debut book of essays is the epitome of vulnerability and honesty around the mental health conversation.

In I'm Telling The Truth, But I'm Lying, which has already landed a spot on The New York Times' Best Sellers list, we follow Ikpi as she takes readers on an exploration of her life from her formative years in Nigeria, moving to Oklahoma as a pre-teen, being a black woman, a poet, a mother and her multitude of identities through the lens of one living with the eventual diagnosis of bipolar II and anxiety.

Her name may ring a bell for those familiar with HBO's Def Poetry Jam—Ikpi made her mark with several appearances on the show and her way with prose and words still hold true with this book of essays. Pulling the reader into a gentle tide of her consciousness, truths and lies, Ikpi shakes our preconceived notions of how the mind works and what "normal" even means.

Keep reading... Show less
News Brief
Photo by Ulf Andersen/Getty Images.

Cameroonian Author Imbolo Mbue's Next Novel Has Been Picked Up by Penguin Random House

The second novel from the mind behind "Behold the Dreamers" is set to tell another poignant, but relatable story on the African experience.

The second novel from Cameroon's own Imbolo Mbue is in the works, Brittle Paper reports.

How Beautiful We Were, the novel's current title, has been acquired by Penguin Random House for its North American rights. The publisher says the book is "a story told through multiple perspectives about what happens when an African village decides to fight back against an American oil company that is destroying their land."

Keep reading... Show less
News Brief

Nigerian Writer Lesley Nneka Arimah is the 2019 Winner​ of the Prestigious Caine Prize

Her short story 'Skinned' took home the prize at the 20th edition of the literature award.

The Caine Prize for African Writing, which was launched back in 2000, is perhaps one of the most prestigious literature awards there is for African writers. This year's theme saw writers from across the continent tackling "the ordinary in an extraordinary manner and celebrating the diversity of the African short-story writing tradition for the twentieth edition of the Prize".

After shortlisting five writers from Cameroon, Ethiopia Kenya and Nigeria, Nigeria's Lesley Nneka Arimah's Skinned was crowned the winning short story.

Keep reading... Show less
News

Celebrated Kenyan Author, Dr. Margaret Ogola, Honored With Google Doodle

The author of the seminal novel "The River and the Source" is remembered on what would have been her 61st birthday.

Kenyan author, activist, and doctor Margaret Ogola is the latest African icon to be commemorated with a Google Doodle.

Google Africa unveiled the design, which features a painted portrait of the author admits a purple sunset, on Wednesday, June 12 to mark what would have been the novelist's 61st birthday.

The doodle appears on the Google homepage in Kenya. Google In Africa shared the image on their Twitter, asking followers to share their favorite quotes from her seminal novel The River and the Source.

Born in Asembo, Kenya in 1958, Dr. Ogola released her first novel, The River and the Source, in 1995. The internationally renowned book told the stories of four generations of Kenyan women as they country experienced rapid social, political and economic change.

The book won both the Jomo Kenyatta Prize for Literature and the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book in Africa in the year of its release. It also became part of Kenyan school curriculum.

The award-winning novelist was also a practicing pediatrician who worked closely with orphans affected by HIV and AIDS as the medical director of the Cottolengo Hospice in Nairobi. She received the Families Award for Humanitarian Service from the World Congress of Families for her services.

"Local doodles provide a way for Google to connect with Kenyans about what matters to them and to help celebrate the important moments," said Dorothy Ooko, head of communications and public affairs, SSA. "We celebrated Wangari Maathai and today we're celebrating a literary figure, Dr. Margaret Ogola."

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.