Celebrating literature from the Pacific Islands.
Introducing world stories with mana.
Reviewing stories related to all things "island", including village life, colonialism, sea-faring, myths and legends.
I am an author of Young Adult Fiction books. I worked as a teacher in the Pacific Islands for seven years. Whilst in the Solomon Islands I taught PSSC English before the ethnic tension in 2000 forced a change of plans. I love Pacific literature, art and music. You can find me on Facebook at Beth Montgomery Author.
Dangerous Love is an African romance and I've decided to review it because it's one of those world books with 'mana' that are often overlooked in favour of English or American love stories. I don't normally enjoy romance novels so when I picked this book up I was half-hearted about it. It didn't take me long to be totally captivated and it's now one of my top-ten-best-ever reads.
Dangerous Love (Phoenix House, 1996)
This is a tragic love story set in Nigeria in the 1970s just after the civil war. A young artist called Omovo falls in love with a woman who is trapped in a loveless arranged marriage. The husband's fury at her betrayl threatens their affair but poverty and illness impact upon their love too.
The imagery in this novel is raw and tangible. The reader can hear and smell and taste the dusty city streets. I read this book more than ten years ago but I can still imagine the heroine in her yellow dress at the street party and the grime on the walls of the compound's communal bathroom. I have since read other works by Ben Okri but this one remains my favourite.
It isn't a book suitable for younger readers but I'm sure PSSC students could give it a try and enjoy it.