Stories from the heart for older generations by Olusola Sophia Anyanwu
I have always loved short stories – the way you can dip in and out of different lives - so I was very happy to be offered a review copy of this book.
As a bonus, this book not only provides you with a snapshot of the different characters’ lives but also that magical feeling of discovering a new place. Set in Nigeria in days gone by, the stories drop in nuances of local culture: the language, sights and sounds, the names of places and people... The characters’ behaviours and expectations are of that particular place and era, which all adds to the flavour.
The author manages to create a strong cultural backdrop which, while not the main point of the stories, is present in all of them, making it feel rather like being transported to another land. I particularly love the ambience in “The Rush” and could really imagine listening to rainfall through an open window and the fluttering of newspaper pages ruffled by the breeze.
The characters are strong and believable while the stories themselves are gently probing, inspiring us to think about human nature and how we relate to others. These are indeed stories of the heart - not saccharin love stories, but tales of all the things that go on inside us – whether openly or hidden. The stories unfold all the good and the bad, love and lust, confusion, grief, kindness, misunderstandings and deception. They tell tales of relationships between parents and children as well as married couples, friends and lovers. There is also community, stories of generosity and service, the helpers and those helped...and how the lines can blur between them.
Overall these are engaging stories that do not shy away from real life but instead use it to explore humanity with all its strengths and weaknesses.