5 must-read books
I developed a love for reading as a young child, cultivated mostly by my father. When we would go to the supermarket as a family, I would run off and my parents would look for me everywhere only to find me in the book section, reading. My father said I loved books even before I could actually read simple words.
For almost three decades, I have read more books than I can count. I have a long list of favorites but I shall just focus on the few that I read over and over again.
1. The Last Plague by Meja Mwangi
Meja is a Kenyan author who in this book examines the enigma of AIDS sweeping across Africa in this case a small town called Crossroads. The story is set at its onset, where very little advancement was available such as ARVs, nutritional supplements, and adequate awareness.
Janet, the ‘Kodom’ woman (condom) fights for her people, to save them from their ignorance. The people of Crossroads believe their town is cursed and do not want to do away with their customs such as wife inheritance and not being open to using condoms.
I would recommend this book to anyone who would like an insight on AIDS, because it does shed light on some customs and practices that do hinder the advancement of eradication of the spread of the disease, especially in African cultures.
2. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseni
Khaled is an Afghan-American novelist. He is a doctor by profession but has written a few books that are all simply perfect.
Set in Afghanistan, the story centers around Mariam and Layla. Mariam an illegitimate child who suffers from both the stigma surrounding her birth along with the abuse she faces in her marriage. Layla, born a generation later, privileged until their lives intersect when she is forced to accept a marriage to Rasheed, Mariam’s husband.
This book is amazing, heart-wrenching, and a very important read. I cried. I was depressed. I was thankful for my life. It was a moving read.
3. Eleven Minutes by Paulo Coello
First of all, let me say that this man can’t write a bad book. The Brazillian author is a complex writer often mixing a lot of information all at once but I love his flow. I really liked this book not just because of its sexual nature wink wink but because it was a young girl’s journey of discovery and those who know me know I’m all about journeys.
It is the story of Maria, a young girl from a small town in Brazil. At a tender age, she becomes convinced that she will never find true love. She goes to Geneva in hopes of finding fame and fortune only to end up becoming a prostitute. She shuts her doors to love completely. She then meets a Swiss painter who sees her “inner light” and she falls in love. Maria has to choose between pursuing a path of darkness – sexual pleasure for its own sake or risking it all for true love.
3. The Concubine by Elechi Amadi
This masterpiece was originally published by Elechi, a Nigerian author in 1966 people! 1966! One of my all-time favorites, definitely my favorite African novel. It is a beautifully written tale of doomed love, oh man I love these lovey-dovey things.
The book explores traditions, beliefs, gender roles, love, and culture in an African setting with a twist of conspiracy, greed, hatred, and liberation.
Its so good in fact I’m going to read it again for the umpteenth time.
5. You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero
This was the first personal development book I ever read. I had battled depression and self-esteem issues since I was 16 years old and by the time I read this book at 26 years old, my back was against the wall. I needed a change and so I took a leap of faith and I must say, I feel like a bad-ass now!
It’s full of hilariously inspiring stories, sage advice, easy exercises, and the occasional swear word. This is a book that literally put me on a path to change my life.
Get in the comments or my social media pages and tell me some of your favorite books that you can just read over and over again.