Arrows of Rain

Okey Ndibe. Soho, $15.95 trade paper (304p) ISBN 978-1-61695-457-4
Ndibe's (Foreign Gods, Inc.) novel takes its title from a Nigerian proverb saying, "rain has too faces. It can give life, but its arrows also cause death." This tale primarily concerns itself with violent stories that are stifled or left untold, opening with a prostitute found dead on the beach in the fictional country of Madia. Bukuru, an outcast, accuses state authorities of raping and killing the girl, and unsurprisingly the authorities accuse him of lying and arrest him for perjury. In court, Bukuru makes pointed attacks against president Isa Palat Bello, causing such an uproar that the trial is adjourned for two months, and Bukuru is sent to prison. Days later, the journalist covering the trial receives a summoning from Bukuru asking him to share Bukuru's account of another instance in which Isa Palat Bello raped and murdered a prostitute. At the time, Bukuru was too afraid to speak up, and has regretted it since. He hopes by sharing his story now, at least a small part of the current situation might change. The book acutely dissects an absurdly corrupt governing system and presents a country filled with apathy and regret. The solution is not clear, but Ndibe's story is told to powerful affect. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/12/2015
Release date: 01/01/2015
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 247 pages - 978-0-435-90657-3
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