Short Story Review: Boyi by Gloria Mwaniga Minage

I am not sure about other cultures around the world, however, I have found that African culture is filled with the oddest colloquialisms. These are often belted out by an angry parent faced with a child whose troubles they cannot comprehend. These ridiculously funny sayings are often used in speech but rarely in written prose.

Our very boys, who ate oaths to protect our ancestral land have turned on us like the hungry chameleon that eats its intestines

Mwaniga’s 3,492 worded story of indebtedness and the audacity to present living collateral. Mwaniga presents one of the stories behind land rows, the kind you will not find on your television sets – but may be on radio, local community radio if they dared.

She aptly presents the frailty of a mother’s broken spirit and resolve to believe in any hope that she can clutch onto, as well as a father’s anguish and his strong innate need to justify the actions that ensued.

She tells the story through the eyes of an observer, a witness to the silent madness that proceeds a home stolen of joy. She also aptly presents the effectiveness of the local community communication system, which was a real marvel considering how glued we are to our cellphones in the real world.

Do you think the plague of deafness descended on us in the night?

Mwaniga makes you feel the pain of her characters.

Her style of writing made this book an easy, very believable read.

Boyi by Gloria Mwaniga Minage was announced as having been shortlisted for the Writivism 4th Annual Short Story Prize. It has now been published at Munyori Literary Journal head on over there to read it yourself

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