There comes a point in life when one is pushed to the corner and the only way one will live is if they leave. This is what happens at the island of Adavera in the Nvaleroah household. The death of Edward Nvaleroaah brings with it episodes of other forms of departure. Edward, is a loving father to his three daughters; Anidanta, Nohana and Lucy. His sudden death leaves his estranged wife, Eleanor a disturbed soul. Disturbed with the way she will start being the daddy to her girls. She is not just assuming that role but rather a loving father at that. These thoughts weigh her down as she has never been present in her children’s lives as much.
As a patient of mental health, she’s left with no option of how to address these issues. Thanks to Uncle KK who is so fond of children that he is willing to take care of the girls from a distance. With his son Preston as their friend and playmate, there is little to worry about. Besides, there is Lucy, Eleanor’s little girl the one who brings life and light to everyone. But the going gets tougher. Eleanor cannot fake it any more. She leaves to find a life of her own. Anidanta has to find answers to the questions in her life. She leaves to follow the music wherever it is laying at the island. Nohana is left as the custodian of this household of leaving souls. She too disappears into herself.
Preston, the only son of Uncle KK is a struggling teenager who is desperate for attention and affection especially from the girls. He misses his mother. She left her father to go to Tampana to pursue her own career. But Preston wonders why she had to leave. His father has never healed from it. It is the very reason he still eats the crumbs of the meat pies he makes. He says that helps him cope with stress.
Lucy takes it upon herself to bring to a hold this continuous chain of departures before they are all gone. She offers her soul to the call of Muuna as a token of redemption for her family. Unknown to her, she was the only string holding everyone and everything in position. Upon her sudden departure, Nohana also chooses to leave for a writing course in Italy. Eleanor abandons the girls to go and use her resources to finance the struggling musicians who will give her something in return.
Sometimes you lose to win. The departure of Lucy, the only fabric that holds together the Nvaleroah community unites the two sisters towards finding meaning in their lives. Antonia’s crossing of the girls’ lives does not leave them the same. Anidanta is willing to change her lifestyle and serve Muuna. Nohana is tired of running away from her past troubles. She has never told anyone that she was raped by Micheal and it is one thing that has always held her hostage and eaten into her self-esteem. When Preston asks her to be his girlfriend, she says yes. She knows Preston has his past with Colette, it is not a problem at least they are together now. The past is behind, it is time to live a new life on this island of Adavera.
AUTHOR: Racheal A.Z. Mutabingwa
PUBLISHER: First Printing, 2018
You can get a copy of this book at African Studies BookStore and Turn The Page Africa
Photo by Andrew Semanda Muwanguzi
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