Reviewer: Sheila Grant

Publisher: Oneworld October 2021

ISBN:  978-0861541454

Opening on a high note that did not lose its promise,  this  intriguing  book immediately grabs the interest of the reader.  A rousing family wedding, attended by the whole village, a hesitant and slightly nervous young bride………and an absent groom!  Elikem, from a wealthy family is  seemingly so involved in work commitments that he cannot attend his own wedding.  But his influential mother is to the fore, delighted that the bride she  has personally chosen for her favourite son, appears to be acquiescent to all instruction.  Alfi, is flattered and more than slightly bemused as to why she, daughter of a lowly member of her future mother in law’s staff should be chosen by the all powerful and commanding Aunty to join their family.

Set in Ghana, the celebration of this lively wedding day is an insight into social division, family loyalty and duties, with coercion seen beneath the surface.  The guests are entertaining in their behaviour throwing themselves into the celebration, and the food and freebies that fill their pockets.

Afi, is pushed along into this arranged marriage, her misgivings submerged in the sheer joy it has given her mother, ecstatic at seeing her daughter become part of probably the most important family in their area.    A wonderful character is Afi, touching in her seemingly mild acceptance of this union. 

Is she as meek as she appears on that day?  As the riveting tale continues It gradually becomes apparent that she may have submitted to the wedding but she will not accept anything that does not contribute to a staunch marriage. She is no pushover.

This is a most enjoyable read, with a fascinating plot that follows Afi to Accra and her new life.  A romantic novel in some sense but a very human tale with finely drawn believable characters, family relationships and a great deal of humour, giving a glimpse of life  in Ghana. 

This is such a well written and thoroughly good read, a page turner,  interesting, funny, A pleasure to read that I recommend  without reservation.