Weep Not Child, the debut novel of celebrated Kenyan writer Ngugi Wa Thiong’o published in 1964, was the first book published by a Kenyan African. The author, who was known as James Ngugi before he opted to be a true African writer and adopted the name Ngugi Wa Thiong’o, then went onto first pain and then good things. He ran afoul of the Kenyan authorities with his plays and books seeing detention before fleeing out of the country into exile. While in the US he made his name as the leading writer from Kenya.
While doing his activism work he was able to produce a series of novels that will be forever etched in Kenyan history something the current crop of writers need to remember. You can’t be called a novelist if you are only producing one novel a decade. You can read more about the legendary man from my previous blog.
This June, the man of the hour will be in town to celebrate the book that initially got him into the world of letters. With his publishers East Africa Educational Publishers, he shall be doing a series of events to celebrate this seminal work. Some of the events that will be happening with be; a colloquium at the University of Nairobi, book signing at the Text Book Centre Sarit Centre and a visit to the Mt Kenya University. The events are still at a tentative stage and will be starting from 2-15 June.
One of the biggest draws of this celebration, as if Ngugi Wa Thiongo isn’t enough, will be a first seeing of the Ngugi writer clan. So you can expect to see all the Ngugi writer kids, Mukoma, Wanjiku, Tee and Nduchu in the series of events around the city. This will probably be the first time the Ngugi Clan will have been seen as a gang since their first family outing at the Jamaican Calabash festival last year.
So my people, I suggest that you mark your calendar and prepare for a very cool few first weeks of June.