The House My Father Built

2,500

by Adewale Maja-Pearce

 

In this memoir, about a house his father built, Adewale Maja-Pearce captures the essence of the last decade of the 20th Century. He paints, in the minutest of detail, the sense of transition, of inevitable change, of frustration at its slow pace. The reader, while focused on the small details, is coerced to lean back, and take in the big picture.

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About The House My Father Built

When he moved into the house his father left him, Adewale Maja-Pearce figured it wouldn’t be any problem to persuade the tenants to move out. After all, he had given them a year’s notice, rent free. But, as it unfolds in this book, it would cost him a lot more to take full possession of his inheritance.

At every turn his tenants plot to outwit him. They steal electricity meters, bribe judges and lawyers – including his – and hire policemen and assassins.

Maja-Pearce’s adventures as a novice Lagos landlord are more than a hilarious depiction of the lawlessness of Nigerian everyday life, they are “an accurate reflection of the shenanigans being played out in the larger political arena.” In the end, the ordeal to make his father’s house his own proves invaluable to Maja-Pearce’s growth, not only as a landlord but more so as a Nigerian getting re-acquainted with his father’s land.

In this memoir, about a house his father built, Adewale Maja-Pearce captures the essence of the last decade of the 20th Century. He paints, in the minutest of detail, the sense of transition, of inevitable change, of frustration at its slow pace. The reader, while focused on the small details, is coerced to lean back, and take in the big picture.

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adewale maja-pearce author of the house my father built

Adewale Maja-Pearce (born 1953) is an Anglo-Nigerian writer, journalist and critic, who is best known for his documentary essays. He is the author of several books, including the memoirs In My Father’s Country (1987) and The House My Father Built (2014), several other non-fiction titles and a collection of short stories entitled Loyalties and Other Stories (1986)

Maja-Pearce has written in various genres, his early published work featuring short stories drawing on his Nigerian background, with his collection Loyalties and Other Stories appearing in 1986.

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