Book Group: Fiction and Films

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library - Central Library

Book Group: Fiction and Films

November's Selection: Swallow

Swallow book coverYes, the strong gets more
An Eyo Festival StatueWhile the weak ones fade
Empty pockets don't ever make the grade
Mama may have, Papa may have
But God bless the child that's got his own
That's got his own

From "God Bless the Child That's Got His Own"
-- by Billie Holiday and Arthur Herzog, Jr.


This month, the Fiction Lover's Book Club is reading Swallow, by the award-winning Sefi Atta, for discussion at our November meeting.  In the novel, set in the 1980s, two young women balance their morals against the fast-paced, rough-and-tumble life in Lagos, Nigeria's largest, most populous city. They find themselves struggling, sometimes unsuccessfully, to make an honest living there.

(Check out our interactive reading guide for Swallow.)

Fiction Lover's Film CompanionAfrica First DVD cover

We will screen Africa First: Volume 1, a compilation of film shorts by emerging African directors. This is a chance for most of us to get a peek at some of the newer indie filmmakers' work.  Jenna Cato Bass, Jan-Hendrik Beetge, Dyana Gaye and Wanuri Kahiu are the directors whose work is featured in this volume.  Released in 2011, the collected films run a total of 122 minutes and are unrated.

Films in the Africa First series are selected by an annual competition run by Focus World, a digital subsidiary of Focus Features. Curious viewers can see other prizewinning films from previous competitions on the Focus World website.

Times and DatesNigeria's largest city and former capital, Lagos

The Fiction Lover's Book Club will discuss Swallow on Monday, Nov. 19 at 6:30 p.m. in the East Lobby on the second floor (near Room 221). Africa First will be screened on Monday, Nov. 26 at 6 p.m. in Room A-5, on the library's lower level.