Google honors Chinua Achebe today for his 87th birthday. I knew that one of the reasons I desperately wanted to go to secondary school was to know what happened to Nwoye’s mother.
In Day by Day Book 6, in primary school, they summarized a section. But the teacher would not finish the story, on Ikemefuna, telling everyone who wanted to know all parts of the story, yes Things Fall Apart, to apply for secondary school.
It was a marketing stunt between my village and the headmaster. Every kid liked the story and everyone applied to continue because we wanted to hear the rest of the story. It was like a movie: we wanted the part 2.
Then in JSS 2, everyone got a copy of Things Fall Apart, made possible by a son of the soil, a merchant in Aba. We then setup a reading challenge: finish the first 100 books of the African Writers Series.
Then I got to the university, I noticed that Achebe was even writing in Igbo, via Okike – the journal of creative creating. Okike was one of his finest works where he pushed hard on the development of Igbo language with legendary FC Ogbalu and Tony Ubesie.
Thank you Achebe.