The writing is delightful despite the difficult subject. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. Though the story and the characters were plain fictional, the fact that the people suffered under the military government back then was true. Open Preview See a Problem? When the superintendent discovers Lomba’s writing supplies, he has an odd request: Through their eyes, Habila paints an extraordinary tableau of Poverty Street “one of the many decrepit, disease-ridden quarters that dotted the city of Lagos like ringworm on a beggar’s body” , bringing their sounds, sights and smells to life with his spare prose and flair for metaphor. Lomba, taken to visit the old slave port of Badagry on the Atlantic coast, recoils at the “gewgaws of slavery”, which include the mouth lock.

British publishers thirsted for innovative writing from the former colonies. What it does is capture the everyday insanity and contradictions of life in Nigeria – whole families dying on the inter city highways; young people going insane; universities closing down due to student protests or lecturers strikes; young women marrying older men for survival and to maintain their extended family; the sordid and brutal life of a Nigerian prison. Books of the Week. It stops me from jumping up suddenly and bashing my head repeatedly against the wall. There are several layers of irony in a woman’s cynical advice to Lomba: The title refers to a man in a Lagos bar defying the curfew after martial music on the radio has signalled a coup, in effect awaiting his own death. The first story, set during the journalist’s prison sentence, is phenomenal.

But the author self-published a section of it, which then won Britain’s Caine prize for African writing last year. There, he is arrested and imprisoned for three years.

It sounds like it is anegl deserving of the prizes and accolades it has won! Jun 06, Mark rated it really liked it Shelves: On the middle of his second year in jail, Lomba was able to gain access on some pencil and paper and started writing a diary. April 17, at 3: And the world know that you are doing it not for yourself but for the next generation who are bound to be helpless and alone. Preview — Waiting for an Angel by Helon Habila.


I knew nothing about Nigeria in the s.


Helon Habila did a great job in this novel of his, giving life to a world that was still waiting for the arrival of their angel. Judging by Habila’s sombre, gripping and at times humorous novel, this is a pity.

Soon, Lomba’s roommate is attacked by soldiers, journalists are arrested all over the city and the Dial offices are set on fire. It is a poor area with tenement buildings without any of the basic amenities. In the novel, Lomba has gone beyond different phases of emotions and perspectives. This was also the setting where most of the characters in the story found their respective crossroads. Let the world know that fighting for your right to live in a free world is not a sin but a privilege.

Heloj all 4 comments. Janice on the other hand was fortunately well-educated and so was able to decode the meaning behind the poems that was given to her. April 17, at 5: It shows the disruption caused by the military rule of Nigeria.

Helon Habila’s Waiting For An Angel | Free Essays –

This is a novel of interconnected stories, set in Nigeria during the brutal military regime of Sani Abacha. The atmosphere of tension and fear is almost tangible.

Gripping story of love and journalistic integrity. His writing has won many prizes including the Commonwealth Writers Prize, In the s, economic downturn and rapacious military rule conspired to halt the boom in Nigeria.


His mind is full of soul music and girls and the lyric novel he is writing. Though somewhat marred by the abrupt, hablla shifts among narrators and time off, this is a powerful, startlingly vivid novel.

From then on, time moves backwards, more or less, and while Lomba’s story weaves through the whole novel, we meet various individuals – friends, lovers, neighbours and others – that cross Lonba’s path during the preceding years.

As their offices were destroyed in an arson attack for accusing the military dictator of squandering millions, the editor faced arrest or exile.

Apr 13, Richard Kunzmann rated it liked it. And indeed, the first story in this book of seven interconnected stories hits the reader with a wallop.

The novel’s own hallucinatory reeling back in time slowly reveals how these characters are linked, culminating in a fatal demonstration that Lomba has been assigned to cover, but which is brutally quashed. Kela’s aunt runs the Godwill Food Centre Restaurant; through his encounters with the patrons, as well as his activist English teacher, Kela and readers learn about Nigeria’s bloody postcolonial history.

This is just a sample. Two years after, the full version of the book was released in the UK having the title of Waiting for an Angel.

It gives a personal perspective of the effects of military helkn on individuals: The anger creeps up on you, like twilight edging out the day.