June 14, 2015

Fated Paradox - Inkitt's June Writing Contest

Inkitt's Writing Contest for June 2015 Has Begun!
Inkitt's theme for their latest writing contest is "Fated Paradox: Tales of Gripping Suspense" and they want you to keep them on the edge of their seats with your best mystery and thriller stories. Submit accounts of murders and red herrings, or have them biting their nails over stories full of adrenaline and espionage. Leave them breathless with your tales of unmatched suspense! 

Submission Details:
Inkitt will accept original fiction stories of any length. ALL entries must be posted to the Inkitt contest page to be considered eligible. The contest began on June 4th and closes on July 4th! This contest is completely FREE TO ENTER, and authors will retain all rights to any and all works submitted in the contest. The top 10% based on reader votes will get the chance to be picked by the Inkitt staff for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prize. 

1st Prize: $50 cash, 5 printed copies of the winning story with custom typography (created by Inkitt's designer). 
2nd Prize: $40 cash
3rd Prize: $20 cash

ALL entrants will get the chance to show their work to a rapidly growing community of authors and readers hungry for high-quality fiction. 

Contest URL: www.inkitt.com/fatedparadox
Twitter Handle: @Inkitt
Hashtag: #FatedParadox

[Image and post content provided by Inkitt]

June 07, 2015

The Fishermen by Chigozie Obioma | Book Review

The Fishermen focuses on the lives of four brothers - Ikenna, Boja, Obembe, and Benjamin - but it's also about the disintegration of a family of eight in Akure, a town in western Nigeria. Benjamin, the youngest of the four brothers, narrates their story as he looks back on their life together. The Fishermen begins with the family's reception of the news that Benjamin's dad had gotten transferred to Yola to work, and he was going to leave his family behind in Akure. While he's gone, Benjamin's mom finds it really hard to rein in four adolescent, headstrong boys, and thus begins the crumbling of their family unit. It starts slow at first and then it all goes south shockingly quick.

In The Fishermen, Chigozie weaves in events from Nigeria's history into this story, pegging his tale into a period of time we can all recognize. I liked the nostalgic references to Chinua Achebe, M.K.O. Abiola, Amokachi, and the lyrics from Onyeka Onwenu's famous "Iyogogo" song, among other things. I got a little frustrated early on and every now and then because The Fishermen felt clogged with detailed descriptions about things, areas, paths, locations... Details I honestly did not care about. Were they essential to the story? Probably. Probably not. It's not so bad but it's enough to warrant mentioning. About 60 pages from the end is when I finally begin to really, really feel something. A mounting dread that the worst wasn't over yet and that things were really about to fall apart for good. After I was done reading The Fishermen I realized that I had grossly underestimated this book and Chigozie's skill even though I had been rooting for his debut to be triumphant long before this book came to me in the mail. Chigozie's a good storyteller and without doubt someone we all need to watch in the future.
[Image via The Millions]