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The Story of William Kamkwamba’s Ingenuity Is Coming to Netflix March 1st 2019

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The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind on Netflix March 1

Netflix is set to release the movie, ‘The boy who harnessed the wind’ on March 1, 2019. The movie is a true story adaptation of a book of the same title. Earlier, it screened at the Sundance Film Festival in preparation for its global debut.

When William Kamkwamba built a windmill, he never thought he was doing anything special. He had been forced to drop out of school as a result due to famine, that made it difficult for his family to afford his tuition. The young Malawian did not want that to deter his education so he frequented the village library. It was there that he discovered his love for electronics. After he read a book called “Using Energy“, he decided to make practical use of the information in the book and create a makeshift wind turbine. He experimented with a small model using a cheap dynamo and eventually transitioned to a functioning model. With it he was able to power up electrical appliances in this family’s house. This piqued the interest of the local community and soon the buzz of his ingenuity caught international attention.

The Book by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer

Former Associated Press reporter, Bryan Mealer had been reporting on conflict across Africa for five years when he heard Mr Kamkwamba’s story. The story was just the kind of tale he loved to tell so he worked with Kamkwamba for a year to write the best selling book entitled “The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind“.

In an interview with the BBC, Mealer said Kamkwamba represents Africa’s new “cheetah generation”, young people, energetic and technology-hungry, who are taking control of their own destiny.

“Spending a year with William writing this book reminded me why I fell in love with Africa in the first place,” he said, “It’s the kind of tale that resonates with every human being and reminds us of our own potential.”

According to Harpercollins Publishers, the book had already won praises from the bestselling author of ‘The Alchemist’, Paolo Coelho and Noble Laureate and former Vice President, Al Gore. You can get the book from Amazon.

Chiwetel Ejiofor makes directorial debut

The movie is a directorial debut of Chiwetel Ejiofor who doubles as an actor in the movie. The ’12 Years a Slave’ actor and Oscar nominee said he was charmed by the book and wanted to experience it. Speaking about the movie, Ejiofor said,

“To get emotional truth of the story, I spent a lot of time with William. I came to Malawi to experience the book from the actual ground. I met his family, friends and saw the village where everything took place. [Experiencing stories]…from one point of view is not very rewarding ultimately. I’m just looking forward to being a continuing part of that positive change.”

TED Global Talk

This is not the first time that William Kamkwamba’s story will be told to an international audience. In 2007, he was on Ted Talk sharing his story to a cheering audience. Several venture capitalists at the conference pledged to facilitate his secondary education. In 2013 he was named one of TIME magazine’s “30 People Under 30 Changing The World”.

A Broader Audience

However, the movie adaptation will take Kamkwamba’s story to a wider audience. Speaking on the adaptation of his book for a movie Kamkwamba said,

“It’s very exciting to me because at the time I was writing the book I wanted to reach out to as many people as possible. Having this chance of getting this story into a movie is going to reach more people than the book could have managed to do.”

 

 

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173 Nigerian Children Book Authors Contest For The 2019 NLNG Prize For Literature

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The 2019 NLNG Prize For Literature

The Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited prize for literature is one of the most anticipated literary prizes in the country. It revolves around four genres; prose, poetry, drama, and children’s literature. This year, the prize is for children’s literature. The last time this genre was up for the prize was in 2015. However, this year’s edition received a 59% increase in entries compared to 2015.

The submission of entries to the literature prize which is now in its 15th year ran from February 15 to April 5, 2019. On Thursday, 11th April 2019, the eligible entries were handed over to the Advisory Board of the Prize. The Advisory Board received 173 entries and handed it over to the panel of judges at a ceremony in Lagos.

The Members of the Advisory Board and Judging Panel

Present at the handover ceremony includes Advisory Board member and judging panel. Notable among the dignitaries were Professor Jerry Agada (member Advisory Board), Professor Ayo Banjo (Chairman Advisory Board), Andy Odeh (Corporate Communication and Public Affairs Manager of NLNG), Professor Obododinma Oha (Chairman Panel of Judges) and Professor Asabe Usman Kabir (Prize Judge). During the handover, Professor Ayo Banjo said,

“As we deliver these 173 books for your vetting, we eagerly look forward to the discovery of yet another literary gem that will open up possibilities for millions of children not only in Nigeria but all over Africa. We can confidently say that the Nigeria Prize for Literature has brought some previously unknown Nigerian writers to public attention.”

Winner and Award of Prize

The unveiling of the winner for the NLNG Literature Prize will be at a ceremony in October 2019. This event will also coincide with the anniversary of the first Liquefied Natural Gas export on October 9, 1999. While receiving the 173 entries, the Chairman Panel of Judges, Professor Oha said,

“We have been saddled with a big responsibility and we will discharge our assignment credibly.”

The winner of the NLNG Literature Prize will receive $100,000. This is the highest prize for a literature contest in the country. Ten entries were also submitted for the Literary Criticism Prize. The winner of the Literary Criticism Prize will receive 1 million Naira.

The previous winner of the NLNG Prize for Literature in the children’s literature category include;

2007—joint winners Professor Akachi Adimora-Ezeigbo (My Cousin Sammy) and Mabel Segun (Readers’ Theatre: Twelve Plays for Young People).

2011—Adeleke Adeyemi (The Missing Clock)

2015—No winner

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3 Nigerian Authors Make The 16 Author Longlist For The Most Prestigious Literary Prize In The UK For Women

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L-R: Diana Evans, Oyinkan Braithwaite, Akwaeke Emezi

The Women’s Prize for Fiction is the most prestigious literary prize in the United Kingdom. Formerly known as the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction, the prize goes to female authors of any nationality for full-length English novel published in the United Kingdom the preceding year. There are 163 entries this year but the judges painstakingly cut it down to 16. However, three Nigerian authors (Oyinkan Braithwaite, Akwaeke Emezi, and Diana Evans) made it to the longlist.

The Women’s Prize for Fiction was founded in 1996. The inspiration for the prize was prompted by the 1991 Booker Prize which sidelined female authors in the six shortlisted books. However, that year it was on record that sixty percent of books were by female authors. That event made journalists, librarians, booksellers, agents, and publishers to take action.

About the prize and judging panel

The winner of the Women’s Prize for Fiction will go home with £30,000 and a bronze sculpture, ‘Bessie’. Consequently, this year’s award ceremony will take place on June 5 in Central London. This year’s judging panel consists of Sarah Wood (a digital entrepreneur), Leyla Hussein (campaigner and psychotherapist), Dolly Alderton (author, broadcaster, and columnist), and Arifa Akbar (journalist and critic). The chairperson of this year’s judging panel is Professor Kate Williams. In a statement after the release of the longlist, Williams said,

“I am thrilled to share this longlist – 16 incredible books by a diverse group of women, from the UK and countries across the world, all brilliant stories that sweep you into another world. Each of them has been a privilege to read, and they have taken us into places a million miles from each other, exploring the lives of women and men in so many different but utterly compelling ways.”

Brief bio of the Nigerian authors and summary of their stories

Oyinkan Braithwaite

Oyinkan Braithwaite is a Kingston University graduate of Creative Writing and Law. In 2016 her story was part of the Commonwealth Short Story Prize shortlist. “My Sister, the Serial Killer” explores the tale of Korede, whose younger sister Ayoola kills her boyfriends in the name of self-defense. Korede loves her sister and finds it difficult reporting to the police. All that changes when Ayoola starts dating the doctor where Korede works as a nurse. Korede is in love with the doctor and doesn’t want him to be one of Ayoola’s victims. However, saving one will mean sacrificing the other.

Diana Evans

Diana Evans is a Nigerian-British novelist living in London. She has three novels to her name. “Ordinary People” follows the tale of two couples at the brink of revolution or surrender. Everything changes when Melissa gives birth to a new baby. Michael still loves her but is finding it hard to stay faithful. In the suburbs, Stephanie and Damian are happy with their three children until the death of Damian’s father.

Akwaeke Emezi

Akwaeke Emezi is an Igbo and Tamil writer. “Freshwater,” tells the story of Ada, a child prayed into existence. Her parents struggle to contain the contradictory and volatile spirits within her. While in college an assault leads to crystallization of her selves. Subsequently, Ada’s life takes a dangerous and dark dimension.

The longlist

Books and their authors that made it to the longlist this year’s Women’s Prize for Fiction include;

  • The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker
  • Remembered by Yvonne Battle-Felton
  • My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite
  • The Pisces by Melissa Broder
  • Milkman by Anna Burns
  • Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi
  • Ordinary People by Diana Evans
  • Swan Song by Kelleigh Greenberg-Jephcott
  • An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
  • Number One Chinese Restaurant by Lilian Li
  • Bottled Goods by Sophie van Llewyn
  • Lost Children Archive by Valeria Luiselli
  • Praise Songs for the Butterflies by Bernice L. McFadden
  • Circe by Madeline Miller
  • Ghost Wall by Sarah Moss
  • Normal People by Sally Rooney

Freshwater is first non-binary inclusion

Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi earlier in 2018 won the Quartz Africa’s as the best African book. The inclusion of Emezi’s ‘Freshwater’ is the first time a non-binary trans author will make it to the long list of the Women’s Prize for Fiction. The same day of the longlist announcement, the competition judges published an editorial believed to put an end to the controversy surrounding the inclusion of the novel on the list. Reacting to the novel, one of the judges, Arifa Akbar said,

Emezi’s novel takes the conversation about female-only spaces and non-binary identities out of an often inward-looking, white, Western enclave, to give it new meaning.”

Past African winners

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is the only African to have won the coveted Women’s Prize for Fiction (then Orange Prize for Fiction). The multiple-award-winning writer took home the prize in 2007 for her novel, ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’. If Oyinkan Braithwaite, Akwaeke Emezi or Diana Evans should win, it will be the second time the prize will come to Africa. The announcement for the shortlist will be on April 29.

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There Are Two Nigerian Authors On President Obama’s Favorite Tradition’s List!

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When it comes to books, there are multiple characteristics that make them someone’s favorite. It is not just about the cover but the quality of content and the message it delivers. The rising trend of reading has taken over the globe during the last two years.

Sharing your favorite books on social media has become the “new cool” and gives a whole new idea of someone’s personality. Many public figures have been keeping up with the new trends.

While the whole world has been sharing their special memories of 2018, the former American president is no exception. On his Instagram last year, Barack Obama shared his list of preferred books and called them a “favorite tradition”.

The list includes two Nigerian books, ‘Americana’ by Chimamanda Adichie and ‘Things Fall Apart’ by Chinua Achebe. Being the only two authors from Nigeria hitting the list, they caught the attention of the public eye worldwide.

Critiques across the globe highly praise “Americana”. The other one “Things Fall Apart” is considered as the king of African literature. This 60-year-old publication is the most well-read book in African prose.

The crown of a favorite book of the year goes to ‘Becoming’. An autobiography written by his beloved, Mitchel Obama, is without a doubt, captivating. Obama mentioned the title with a side note “obviously my favorite”.

“It gives me a moment to pause and reflect on the year through the books, movies, and music that I found most thought-provoking, inspiring, or just plain loved,” noted the former U.S president during his announcement.

“It also gives me a chance to highlight talented authors, artists, and storytellers – some who are household names and others who you may not have heard of before.”

The annual lists posted by Obama reflect an extensive range of films, movies, and books from around the planet. Hitting multimillion likes and views, these posts give people a chance to encounter the famous personalities’ preferences.

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