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Goodbye Lucille

by Segun Afolabi

An amazing, gentle, well-written, wrong-footing book that deals with exile and loss through the eyes of a young black Nigerian living in 1980's Berlin. Initially he is as concerned with getting drunk and laid as he is with healing family rifts. The supporting cast - think 'Cabaret meets 'Tales of the City' - are only too keen to make sure Vincent finds any number of girls but in the end, and very satisfyingly, true love does find him.

Extract

'Ah, ah!' Aunt Ama looked at me. 'You hate him so much you don't care if he lives or dies?'
I could not think in this chaotic, broiling state. If I spoke I would regret my words. Aunt Ama was the last person I would want to hurt. I could feel my anger turning in on itself, flowing back through my veins, like a venom searching for a place to rest.
I stared ahead at the unbroken skyline. Such a piercing blue. A blue to love and hate at the same time. I suddenly remembered Claudia was asleep, there was a house full of people behind us. My jaw was trembling.

Parallels

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamandra Ngozi Adidwe
 

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