Toni Kan’s critically acclaimed and award-winning short story collection Nights of the Creaking Bed makes its UK debut today April 30, 2019.
A few days ago we here at JamesMurua.com were excited to announce the arrival of the new imprint Cassava Shorts. The outfit promised to bring to the light gripping stories by celebrated and emerging authors to continental and international audiences. The first book to be released to UK audiences is Lagos native Toni Kan’s Nights of the Creaking Bed.
Nights of the Creaking Bed, first published in 2009, received praise from home and abroad winning the Saro Wiwa/NDDCprose prize in the same year. The new edition of the much-loved collection features new stories and a brand new cover that appropriates the yellow of Lagos danfos. It is blurbed thus;
“Nights of the Creaking Bed” is an unflinching look at life and lust in Lagos. This collection is filled with memorable characters in affecting dramas: a young man who can’t get the image of his naked, beautiful mother out of his mind; a middle-aged housewife who finds love again but has an impossible decision to make; a child so poor he has to hawk onions on Christmas day. The stories document the inescapable violence of life in Lagos as well as the power of human connection and the importance of joy.
It comes highly recommended by those who have had a peek already like author Sefi Atta who says of the collection, “beginning with deliberate brevity and ending on a note of lush lyricism, these fascinating vignettes of Lagos life showcase an array of peripatetic characters who are hopelessly stuck in their dilemmas.”
Author Chika Unigwe describes it as “a brash and vibrant collection that brims all at once with sadness and humor; suffering and compassion; longing and loss. Toni Kan is an astute observer of human nature and writes convincingly about the ineluctable grasp of poverty and culture on his characters.
Author and publisher Zukiswa Wanner said that “in Nights of the Creaking Bed, Toni Kan holds a mirror to humanity’s ability to love tenderly one minute and destroy cruelly in the next, thus capturing with style the complexity and unpredictability of not just his characters but ourselves. A necessary addition to the library of any discerning reader.”
Expressing his delight in a series of social media posts, the author hailed by fans as “Mayor of Lagos” wrote: “New look. New Imprint. New stories! The UK edition of my award winning short story collection, Nights of the Creaking Bed, hits the shelves from today. This news makes me happy on several levels. Nights was published 10 years ago but it has never gone out of print and has been used by over 30 people I know for their theses or dissertations. Secondly, it was my first properly published book with a proper publisher, contract and royalties. But above all it is the first book to be issued under Cassava Republic’s new imprint; Cassava Shorts. Every writer wants to publish a work that endures and defines him, It is early days yet but Nights remains a gift that keeps giving.”
Y’all need to check out this new book. Get your copy here.