This is my two cents from enjoying a good book.
Me sef don read the book and make we no lie, Nearly All the Men in Lagos are Mad.
The author did quite a fascinating job of telling a heart-wrenching story that would still allow rays of laughter and smiles to dart across your already gloomy face as you imagine what women go through in relationships. From Isioma, whose husband urged her to cheat, to Dele, who hid his impotence from his wife to the dutiful wives who would do anything to keep their family intact, protect their husbands’ secrets and stay married, to the ones who were scarred by the selfish desires of a man when they were young and naive and can’t seem to get past it. It tells of Layo who can’t seem to understand why her man is yet to officially wife her. Each story tells a unique tale of the woes, unrewarded efforts and sufferings of women in relationships in Lagos.
It goes further to show how much patriarchy has influenced romantic and sexual relationships in today’s world, tilting the balance in favour of men, especially when things go sour, unless in special scenarios where the woman is an undoubted cause of the scandal. E be things when we see wetin babes don see for men’s hand. Omo e choke! Society has over time made it seem okay for women to see crazy in relationships. Thus making every woman’s prayer to be that she doesn’t see the kind of crazy that is beyond her. Whereas a man has been conditioned into entering relationships to never condone any form of crazy from his partner. This explains why a husband, after forcing his wife to commit adultery, can call his wife a whore.
Nothing particularly special, you might say. Some might call it a feminist book mainly because of the way men are portrayed and because they have a misconstrued conception of what feminism is about, but it really isn’t. It simply puts together a series of ugly real-life experiences women go through in their dealings with men. It shows the craze women have to put up with to co-exist with this awesome species the Almighty has gifted them with and the many harmful concessions and sacrifices they have to make in a quest to lead a happy life. How love, sex, money, marriage and affection can be used as a tool for blackmailing women. Lagos men!
A collection of short stories, the book is well structured, brilliantly designed and has a captivating book title. The first five lines would make you interested in what the book is about in a quirky way. A good and simple choice of words, proper settings and events were not exaggerated – very relatable to Nigerians, Lagosians especially. I love the fact that trending Nigerian slangs were used in ways that brought out its originality and aligned with the reality of things. While some stories had a happy ending, others left you wondering how life for the protagonist would be like after her ordeal. What coping mechanisms would they employ to go on with life? For instance, there was the lady that knew that if she ever met Dele again, only one of them would leave the scene alive and if he was the lucky one, then he would walk away with a scar! There was also the pastor’s wife, who would do anything to protect her marriage and the brand she had built with her husband, even if it meant lying to the public and denying an obvious truth. Sadly, I strongly believe every Nigerian woman can find themselves living or has lived some of the stories narrated by Damilare Kuku.
It’s definitely a good read and worth your money!