Book Title: ODUFA
Author: Othuke Ominiabohs
Publisher: Masobe Books
Pages: 339 pages
When Anthony Mukoro discovers he cannot father a child, his whole world comes crashing. In a desperate bid to sire an heir, he plunges into the reckless life of a pleasure-seeking libertine. But everything changes when he meets and falls head over heels in love with Odufa,beautiful young girl with a past. Their coming together is fraught with obstacles and challenges that pits them against everything; from tradition to stereotyped beliefs. But nothing is as it seems as they both get entangled in a love affair so intense and toxic, t quickly begins to spiral out of control.
Odufa is a lovers romance tale divided in three parts, cutting across the themes of family, love, friendship, toxic relationships, domestic abuse, inter-ethnic marriage, cardiology disorder, male infertility, Nigeria system, Ethnicity, patriarchy, ignorance and various human emotions.
Odufa is a diverting debut which was able to show how the author is fantastic with words, and a good story teller.
The detailed description of the geopolitical zones in Nigeria takes the reader to different locations; from North West to South South and South West Nigeria and all felt lively.
The characters in this book, were unbelievable and filled with dramas that got me laughing, screaming, shocked. Also, reminding me of Nollywood and it’s not so good scripts.
The main protagonists were problematic, while the female protagonist was unnecessarily dramatic. Her behaviours portrays that of an educated individual, that grew up in a strong patriarchal home. And taught that her that her mission here on earth is be a pleasing wife to her husband.
Odufa’s level of parasitism was way out of it to me, giving the condition of Anthony. The toxic and unhealthy relationship that existed between them was insane, showcasing the lack of empathy and bringing the effects of toxic relationships and how it greatly affects one’s health into a bright spotlight.
I was between the line of deep thinking: can people be in a relationship like that of Odufa and Anthony in life, given this is fiction? Anthony’s behavior showed the need of re-channeling what makes life and living important to you.
The misinterpretation of one’s ethnicity and behavioral character couldn’t be left out because, that’s how stereotype comes into full play. I find my interest seeking more from other characters than the main protagonists.
One of the aspect of this book that made it an eye-opener to me was the health issue handled with in-depth feeling in the story. Anthony’s disorder is common but I never learned about the complications that it might result in until now…until Odufa.
In as much I felt a favouritism in gender, I love that book was quite different from the common story we get when it comes to fertility between couples.
And guess what, this novel happens to be sequel and the next is Aviara of which I’m happy to be reading with Oreoluwa, thanks to masobebooks.
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About Othuke Ominiabohs
Born and raised in Southern Nigeria, Othuke Ominiabohs is a writer, poet and dramatist. A graduate of Computer Science from the University of Benin, Nigeria, he writes, dredging from experiences and influences from the land of his birth.
To his name is Odufa, a play that got him shortlisted for the Wole Soyinka prize for Literature. Odufa: A Lover’s Tale, his first novel, also got shortlisted for the Association of Nigerian Author’s Prize for Prose Fiction and the Grand Prix of Literary Associations in Cameroun. He is the author of the acclaimed novel, A Conspiracy of Ravens. Aviara: Who Will Remember You is his third and latest novel.