August 17, 2020

Akinyemi’s in-depth exploration of social ills

Akinyemi’s in-depth exploration of social ills

By Veronica Adeusi

Gender inequality, racism, religious bigotry, political instability, marital woes, parental inadequacies, and many more have now become a norm, and it is like being in-between the devil and the deep blue sea, with the current standstill of economic activities due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

At least, so I thought when I picked up this 214-page distinct work of art by Tolu Akinyemi titled “Inferno of Silence” and published by the Roaring Lion Newcastle. The author has put all of these issues into short stories that I thoroughly enjoyed while reading, and never wanted it to come to an end. This book is actually my first read from the author’s numerous works, and I dare say it’s worth every penny and time!

Right from the first story down to the last, each addressing one or more issues, it’s like Tolu intentionally studied societal happenings and decided to paint vivid pictures of them.

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This couldn’t have been the wrong time for this kind of work. No spoilers, yeah, but if you are a real Lagosian, you would understand the hurdles of commuting, especially with the popular yellow buses. And how about living close to a worship center with blaring sound systems; or having a prayer warrior as a neighbour, or neighbours if you are not so lucky. Tolu titled this one ‘Everybody Don Kolomental’.

I love the part of the book that shows the reality of the struggles of a mother to her only girl child, which lead both parents into becoming guests to seers of all sort, all in the search for how to make the best out of their daughter.

This particular story didn’t end well for me, but we all know that not all stories have happy endings, right? You will definitely relate to being denied opportunities or things you merit just because you are from a tribe, race, religion or class different from those in the position to help.

The blend of characters from all tribes and religions of our great country and outside is a typical representation, and it gets to the height where the only love of Ade’s life, Miriam, is left in shambles because his parents would only give their blessings to a lady of like-faith. Will it end well for Ade? Find out.

Do you know how everyone goes around with their struggles, fighting unseen wars and yet are expected to act strong about it, because they would be seen as weak if they do otherwise, most especially in today’s marriages? I could go on and on, but I will definitely not forget the author’s use of words.

Hardly have I gone over a page of this book without coming across an unfamiliar word. What a significant improvement on my lexicon. And now, what are you waiting for? Get this ‘booktiful’ piece and see for yourself.