Thursday, 8 May 2014

Book Review: Eye Of Mayenga!

Book: Eye Of Mayenga
Author: Jasper Rori
Pages: 155 black and white plates
Publisher: Nsema Publishers
Year: 2013

The setting of the novel, The Eye of Mayenga, is a remote rural village called Mayenga. But that village could easily pass for any Kenyan rural village.

The vivid description of Mayenga by the author is bound to take you back to the days when you were a kid and would visit your grandmother.

Back to the days you would walk barefoot, make water runs to the river through the hilly landscape and above all, all the village characters and their skewed distrust for anything foreign.

The author paints the life of Mayenga and it's beacon of hope that lies in one of the village's sons, Vincent Senta.The thing with Senta is that he is a lone ranger in trying to push the village into this millennium.

He gets then tap water, urges then to farm smart and even gets them to stop various cultural practices that only lends to the village lagging behind economically and socially.

But he is felled by the same cultural practices he has been preaching against.

The novel doesn't give me a final payoff for me as a reader, i would have loved to see, Senta's wife pay for snuffing out the only light and the village's hope of prosperity. I would have loved to see atleast one person step to the plate and take on the mantle and continued with Senta's message and work.

But then again, the fact that life is not always fair is reflected in the ending of the novel as it weaves the tale of love, betrayal and loyalty or lack of, in this story that any African can relate to.