One can easily get carried away by all the recent books and forget to pay homage to the classics. Many people say that the likes of Thiong’o and Achebe need to be relegated to the shelves of history, but there are still not that many people, in my opinion, who can weave a tale like Achebe. No Longer At Ease is the second book in this famous Achebe trilogy – the first being Things Fall Apart, and the last being Arrow Of God.No Longer At Ease was actually supposed to be a part of the first book, but Achebe was convinced to split it into two books. It follows Okonkwo’s grandson, Obi, on his return to Nigeria and subsequent employment after receiving a hero’s welcome from all the people who fundraised, from his village, to help him come back and uplift them as well.
He meets a girl, lives the life, and then at some point, much like his grandfather, things begin to fall apart. I loved the easy readability of this book, though I thought the voice of the main character seemed far from the truth of what a man like that and a society like that would say or do, but it was still a really good read. Classics have their place – how will you know where you are going if you do not know where you are coming from?