Saturday, 8 December 2012


Anyone who read Aminata by Francis Imbuga and did not get charmed by the character of Aminata, a young and brilliant lawyer should re-read the book. It was my sister's setbook in high school and I can't remember how many times I told her that she should have scored a straight A in English because they had a wonderful setbook. Of course that was before I fell in love with my own setbooks and decided that there can never be better setbooks than what we had...

Aminata is set in a traditional Kenyan society. The society is heavily defined by customs and traditions and that is what in fact sets the major conflict in the book. Aminata, the lead character has been given a piece of soil as inheritance by her father and people of her village have a problem with this. Women should not be given land! Mmm... their argument is that, women get married and join their husbands and therefore being allocated land in their own parents inheritance meant double potion which was not fair.

Of course I totally disagree with this archaic way of looking at things. To begin with, there are women who don't exactly believe that marriage is their ultimate goal in life; so where do we leave them? Anyway, Aminata was a different kettle of fish. She was (well) married; she would have been content to abandon the fight for her father's land but the desire she had to honor her father's memory could not just allow her to do this and sleep comfortably. The book ends nostalgically... There are other sub-plots in the play which make it a more interesting read... grab a copy.

I have read other books by the same author(Francis Imbuga); Betrayal in the City, Man of Kafira and Miracle of Remera and I loved all of them.

Prof. Francis Imbuga is no more, sadly. But writers don't die... May the words you(Francis Imbuga) wrote continue being an inspiration to all who read them.

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