A novel that holds your face and shows you the reality that some people live and does not let go of you till you are weeping….
We waited six years for the author to write her second book and trust me when I say, this did not disappoint. As with her first book, Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀ tackles a subject matter that is current, real and with characters you cant help but to fight for.
In A Spell of Good Things we are taken to a city in Nigeria where we meet two families from different social and economic backgrounds. We meet Eniola’s family, who were lower middle class, things were going great for them, until his father was made redundant from his job. The family lost everything, their car, house, and access to education. His parents are behind on his school fees and each day that they don’t pay, he gets beaten by the school principal. The landlord is knocking at their door threatening to throw them out on the street. With Eniola’s father not doing anything, he decides he must make some very hard choices.
Wuraola comes from a wealthy family. She is a medical doctor currently doing her residency, always tired, suffering in the public hospital, paying her dues. Her childhood friend and boyfriend propose as a way to join the family together. She is unsure of the proposal but goes along with it because both families are happy. There are some red flags she ignores, in the hopes of not reaching thirty and being unmarried. Things begin to crumble when these red flags won’t let up.
Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀ is a stellar writer there is no denying it. This is not your happy novel, she unflinchingly takes us to a town in Nigeria and shows us how the wealth gap lead to persons doing things they wouldn’t usually do. It is a hard novel to read but there is a sense of hopelessness but I think we need literature like this. The ones that makes us sit with difficult things.
The writing is beautiful and I cannot recommend this enough.