While We Were Away…

If you were an ardent fan of My Literature Lesson, you probably noticed that the site was down for an extensive period – a little over 18 months to be exact. Well, let’s just say sh*t happens 🙁

In December 2018, our hosting service provider suffered a technical glitch that led to the loss of data for some websites, including this one. The company was able to restore services for 98 percent of the affected clients. However, this was among the unlucky few that could not be restored immediately due to a corrupt database.

Fortunately, after many, many months of looking for a viable solution, lady luck smiled upon us when we came across a backup file that we had randomly stored (and forgotten about) on Drop Box 🙂

So, My Literature Lesson is back after a forced hiatus. While we were away…so many things have happened in the local and international literature scene but undoubtedly the most harrowing of them all was the untimely deaths of two of Kenya’s heavyweights in literature – Binyavanga Wainaina and Swahili guru, Ken Walibora.

Binyavanga Wainaina passed on after a short illness on the night of May 21, 2019. On the other hand, Ken Walibora’s death on 10th April 2020, was not only shocking, but mysterious. He was reportedly stabbed before being knocked down by a minibus along Landhies Road in Nairobi’s CBD.

The late Ken Waliaula Walibora

On a positive note, Kenyan author Henry Ole Kulet was awarded the Elder of the Burning Spear: Second Class at last year’s Independence Day celebrations on December 12, 2019.

In Nairobi, the largest Text Book Centre opened at the Sarit Centre, on November 19, 2019. The shop is located at a new wing of the Sarit Centre which has hosted it for many years and it takes up approximately 20,000 square feet.

Storymoja Publishers officially withdrew the Young Adult title Blood Ties by South African writer Zimkhitha Mlanzeli from the Kenyan market on November 1, 2019. The book was criticized by Kenyan readers for the use of vulgar language yet it was recommended as a class-reader for teenagers.

Kenyan author Margaret Ogola was honoured posthumously with a Google doodle and an event at Prestige Books in Nairobi on June 12, 2019. Margaret Ogola was a Kenyan paediatrician and author of the novel The River and the Source, and its sequel, I Swear by Apollo.

In February, 2019 an English version of the late Ken Walibora’s best seller, Siku Njema was launched with the name This Day. The novel was translated by Dorothy Kweyu and Fortunatus F. Kawegere.

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