Blessings by Chukwuebuka Ibeh
Set in modern day Nigeria against the backdrop of same sex laws introduced in 2014. A father witnesses an intimate moment between his son and the family's apprentice and sends him to a Christian boarding school where he feels isolated and alienated from the people he loves. He begins a journey of self-discovery and blossoming desire, while his mother grapples to hold onto her favourite son.
The story is told from the son and mother's perspectives and is a coming of age story about love, loneliness, acceptance and the impact of the criminalisation of same sex relationships.
When Obiefuna's father witnesses an intimate moment between his teenage son and the family's apprentice, newly arrived from the nearby village, he banishes Obiefuna to a Christian boarding school marked by strict hierarchy and routine, devastating violence. Utterly alienated from the people he loves, Obiefuna begins a journey of self-discovery and blossoming desire, while his mother Uzoamaka grapples to hold onto her favourite son, her truest friend.
Interweaving the perspectives of Obiefuna and his mother Uzoamaka, as they reach towards a future that will hold them both, BLESSINGS is an elegant and exquisitely moving story of love and loneliness.
Asking how we can live freely when politics reaches into our hearts and lives, as well as deep into our consciousness, it is a stunning, searing debut.
'Chukwuebuka Ibeh's writing has a certain delicacy to it, so wonderfully observant, and so beautiful' Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Hardback / 256 pages