Ordained by the oracle by Asare Konadu

Ordained by the oracle by Asare Konadu

Ghanaian Fiction

When Kinna announced Ghanaian lit week I had just read this novel so I put it to one side and decided to review it for Ghanaian lit week .Samuel Asare Konadu was born in 1932 ,he worked as a reporter and for the Ghana information services ,in the mid sixties he studied traditional customs ,he also started a publishing venture Anowuo book ,how publish some books in the sixties to success .

SO what is Ordained by the oracle about well we follow Boateng ,he is a successful trader in a the Elmina (a coastal town in the south of Ghana ) ,he is a modern man dealing in the modern world in his day-to-day life ,his wife is in hospital dying it turns out ,now she grew up in a small village and via her grandmother ,has mor belief in the old tribal ways of life .So when Dora the wife dies ,Boateng decides to follow his wifes wishes and to sp[end forty days and nights wife his wife’s body .So with his wife he returns to the village his wife is from and then  spends the forty days and nights with the body.As he does this he reflects on his life and his wife’s life also the people they know .he is helped by people in the village as he spend the forty days and nights .AS he starts to putting things in order in his mind having the time to just think and dwell

Boateng found his sleep after two nights of keeping awake .He thought in the first few hours of the life that faced him without his wife ,but the company he had in the presence of the guide took away the fear that gripped him .When he was locked up with his dead wife .The room they now occupied was a few yards from where Dora  lay in state .

Just after the forty days .

Rather like tail of the blue bird by Nii Ayikwei Parkes ,this book deals with the clashing of to worlds the old village tribal world of Dora and her grandparents that she spent time with when she was younger ,and that of Boateng his modern world and him wanting to turn his back  on traditional ways .These meet when the modern world in the form of the modern Hospital his dying wife is in can’t keep her alive ,so this sends Boateng down a path of rediscovering the past and the values he was in trouble of losing .Konadu writing is poetic and he keep the pages turning with shortish economical written  chapters ,your never left with endless pages of unnecessary writing .The feeling is this is Konadu own world he is describing ,he himself was born in southern Ghana .I think this is a real lost gem of african writing it was part of the early African writer series no 55 an earlier work by him is no40 also in the first series of the African writer series  .It was first published in 1969 .

Have you read this book ?

What is your favourite Ghana book ?


20 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Ghanaian Literature Week « Kinna Reads
  2. Violet
    Nov 17, 2011 @ 11:34:03

    You make this sound so interesting. I’m always a bit wary of reading books about another culture’s death and mourning rituals, in case the author gets it wrong, but this sounds as though it’s written from the heart. I wonder how much has changed since 1969?


  3. Vishy
    Nov 17, 2011 @ 13:30:19

    This looks like a wonderful book, Stu! I haven’t read a book by a Ghanaian author yet. Thanks for introducing Asare Konadu to us. The clash of two cultures is an interesting topic and it is heart-wrenching for the person involved. Glad to know that you liked this book. Happy Reading!


  4. amymckie
    Nov 17, 2011 @ 14:01:29

    I hadn’t heard of this book or author before but it sounds like a really interesting one. Thanks for the review and recommendation! I think my favorite Ghanaian book so far is African Love Stories edited by Ama Ata Aidoo – while not all the stories come from Ghana it does include a couple.


    • winstonsdad
      Nov 23, 2011 @ 23:17:52

      I had that from library and never got to it I must lend it again and read it I rewally want to but got caught up with other books and they wanted it back ,all the best stu


    • winstonsdad
      Nov 23, 2011 @ 23:19:51

      I hadn’t til I saw it second hand and being a african writer series knew it be good because on the whole the books in that series are wonderful ,all the best stu


  5. Lisa Hill
    Nov 18, 2011 @ 08:54:33

    The hard part is going to be finding a copy, I guess?


  6. Lisa Hill
    Nov 18, 2011 @ 08:57:57

    Cancel that last comment, I just found a copy for $0.79c +$3.99 shipping from the US!


  7. Trackback: It’s a Wrap! Ghanaian Literature Week « Kinna Reads
  8. Kinna
    Nov 21, 2011 @ 10:01:31

    Stu, a golden oldie and a classic of Ghanaian literature. Thanks for bringing back and into our discussions during Ghana Lit Week. I read it a long time ago and really liked it. Now I’m wondering whether he wrote anything else. Thanks for the review and for participating in Ghana Lit Week.


  9. Asare
    Jan 25, 2012 @ 11:44:06

    Yes Readers Asare Konadu was a prolific writer. He was survived by 20 titles some published others yet to be published.
    Currently all the books are being managed and published by Adaex Educational Publications ltd.
    You can get copies from the publishers http://WWW.adaexpub.com
    You will love to read all his works an insight into traditional cultural life of the African.


  10. Asare Konadu Yamoah
    Sep 12, 2013 @ 10:46:48

    Winston dad, yes in fact there other titles all listed on amazon UK at least you see the titles and then you can arrange for copies.


  11. kennedy ekyem tabi
    Aug 09, 2014 @ 08:02:21

    truely i’m stunned.it portrays the culture of ghana…..wow!!!!!!


  12. kennedy ekyem tabi
    Aug 09, 2014 @ 08:07:58

    ”oh God make me a man fit for this challenge” thanks ….ORdained by the oracle…a must read book……


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November 2011


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