Some novels entertain while some dissect serious issues that shape the society and threaten the root of human existence. Edify Yakusak’s ‘After They Left’ is a story that explores love, innocence, violence, death, survival and helplessness in Northern Nigeria.
In this debut novel, Yakusak, a lawyer, weaves love and childhood innocence around violence and death, fuelled by ethnic and religious chauvinism.
The story tells of Mafeng and Samuel, two childhood sweethearts who dream of marriage. However, poverty and parental influences stand in their way. Mafeng’s mother, Alice will not let her daughter marry a poor boy. Overwhelmed by family pressure, both lovers take different paths.
Mafeng fulfils her mother’s dream and marries a rich Abuja-based Senator, Bot, not knowing she is in for a life with a promiscuous politician whose life of debauchery will make her a widow in just a decade of marriage. The marriage turns out loveless, lonely and tragic. Bot’s promiscuity and constant absence from home alienate Mafeng, but she finds solace in her two children, Kim and Jugu. But the death of Bot in a hotel room in company of prostitutes gives Mafeng and her childhood sweetheart a second chance.
Samuel, now a police officer in Jos, takes Mafeng as wife with her two children. Mafeng’s new home and happiness are soon punctured by the violence ravaging the city. Violent cla ... Read Full Review