Welcome to the online book tour of Chigozie Anuli Mbadugha’s collection of short stories- Beyond the Trial. The book tells the stories of three women who choose to see life beyond their trials and dare to reach for it. And I must say that I enjoyed reading this inspirational fiction that reminds us that the sun always comes up, even after the darkest night.
The first story, ‘Erased Reproach’, is the story of young love and ruthless heartbreak. Funke, a teenager at the beginning of the story, gives in to peer pressure and ends up with an unwanted pregnancy which leads her into forced exile from her childhood home. In ‘Rude Awakening’, Nkechi’s eutopic world is brought to a rude halt when her husband of eleven years dies suddenly in a car accident. She must face a chequered future alone with three sons. A family’s past is haunting its members in ‘Shadows from the Past’ and it is Ada’s responsibility, to lead her entire family out of darkness and into the light. A long-postponed visit home opens a can of worms about the past and provides the opportunity to deal with it and put it well behind them all.
Here’s an excerpt from the book:
“One of the most memorable events of my childhood was when a visit by my maternal uncles coincided with one of Fathers major beatings. Both Jude and Mother had black eyes and bruises to show for his callousness. I forget now what had led to the beating, but usually it was nothing major. It could even have been something as minor as, who moved his shoes from his designated location for them. He would then deduce insolence and insubordination from one’s mannerism.
On the day in question, Father had stormed out of the house after venting his anger on Jude and Mother as was his custom. Barely two hours later, my maternal uncles – Theo and Raphael, visited us. Mother and Jude were hesitant to come out and stayed in the bedroom. Mother asked me to tell her brothers she was not home because she did not want them to see her bruises. I refused to lie. I actually wanted them to see the bruises. In fact, if the thought had so much as crossed my mind, I would have invited them myself.
After waiting in the living room for nearly thirty minutes and not seeing their sister, their suspicions were aroused. They stormed into our room to find Mother and Jude nursing their wounds. I had never seen my uncles so angry. They left abruptly without a word. I had also never seen Mother so afraid in my life. She feared they might seriously maim or kill our father. I felt he deserved whatever he got from my uncles but being reasonable men, I knew they wouldnt kill him or cause him to have any permanent disability.
Father did not come home that night which further heightened my mothers anxiety. She was awake most of the night worrying about the situation. On my part, I slept well. I had this firm assurance that nothing serious was happening to him. He was brought home the next day by my maternal uncles. They had picked him from Claras café and given him a thorough beating overnight. We welcomed home a sombre and sullen father, who never lifted his hands to beat our mother again. However, the verbal abuse got much worse.”
Chigozie Anuli Mbadugha wrote her first unpublished novel at the age of six and has been writing poems, scripts, short stories, and songs since then, mainly for leisure. One of her poems, “The New Yam Festival,” won second prize in a nationwide poetry competition in 1983. She was the recipient of the silver prize at the Kanagawa World Biennial Children’s art competition in Japan in 1987. She was educated at two Federal Government Colleges (Enugu and Ijanikin, Lagos) and at the University of Benin Medical School. She holds a Masters degree with distinction from University College London.
Her debut publication Beyond the Trial is an inspirational collection of short stories published in 2015. It was nominated for the 2015 Dan Poynter Global EBook Award. In 2015, Beyond the Trial was featured in the London Book Fair, Book Expo America, Beijing Book Fair, Frankfurt Book Fair and the Guadalajara Book Fair. It was also featured in the 2016 Nigeria International Book fair in Lagos.
Chigozie Anuli Mbadugha is constantly trying to maintain a balance between medical practice, family commitments and her passion for writing. She is grateful for the inspiration and support she gets from her husband, family and friends. She is undecided which gives her more pleasure – writing songs or words.
Praise for Beyond The Trial
“Beyond the Trial is truly an inspirational masterpiece. So enriching that anyone experiencing any, if not all the situations painted herein, already has weapons – strength of character, resilience and determination, to turn his or her ugly stories into testimonies.” –Prisca Sam-Duru, Vanguard News Read more here
“Beyond the Trial is an interesting book that educates on virtue, strength, patience, forgiveness, determination and culture. I couldn’t put it down till I finished it.”
Femi Gabriel, Channels TV.
“Beyond the Trial establishes a strong connection with her readers in various ways: every reader will find a connection with the stories because of past or present experiences. From our struggles for identity to the kind of friends, family, upbringing, society, parenting, culture, and personal idiosyncrasies we have, Beyond the Trial has a glimpse of all.”- Ogochukwu Okonne, Vog & Wod Bookshop, Lagos Nigeria.
Score sheet from 23rd Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards
Structure, Organization, and Pacing: 4
Spelling, Punctuation, and Grammar: 5
Production Quality and Cover Design: 4
Plot and Story Appeal: 4
Character Appeal and Development: 4
Voice and Writing Style: 4
Judge, 23rd Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards
Want to Get Your Own Copy of the Book?
Beyond the Trial can be purchased from:
TerraKulture, Laterna Ventures, Patabah bookstore, Bible Wonderland, UNILAG bookshop, Vog & Wod Bookstore, The Hub Media Store, De Prince Supermarket, CLAM Bookshop, and leading bookstores nationwide.
- TerraKulture is located at 1376 Tiamiyu Savage Street, Victoria Island, Lagos.
- Laterna Ventures is located at 12B/13 Oko Awo Street, Victoria Island, Lagos
- Patabah bookstore is located at Shop B18, Adeniran Ogunsanya Mall, Surulere.
- Bible Wonderland: Ojuelegba, Agege, Ipaja, Ketu branches
- UNILAG bookshop: University of Lagos Akoka
- Vog & Wod Book and Stationery Store is located at 25 Osolo Way, Ajao Estate Lagos
- The Hub Media Store is located at The Palms Shopping Mall, Lekki. (1st Floor)
- De prince Supermarket: No.7/9 Akerele street, Gbagada, Lagos
- CLAM Bookshop: Clam close, Omole, Ikeja
It gets even better! You can get an autographed copy of Beyond the Trial delivered to you by courier. Send an email to: email@example.com to place your order. Please include shipping address to assist in estimating the cost of shipping to you.
If you would rather buy the book online, please see the details below:
And now let’s welcome the author, Chigozie Anuli Mbadugha! Feel free to ask your questions about the book and her writing in the comments section.