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Water Baby

ebook / ISBN-13: 9781529425420

Price: £20

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She’s the Pearl of Makoko and the world is her oyster.

In Makoko, the floating slum off mainland Lagos, Nigeria, nineteen-year-old Baby yearns for an existence where she can escape the future her father has planned for her.

With opportunities scarce, Baby jumps at the chance to join a newly launched drone-mapping project, aimed at broadening the visibility of her community.

Then a video of her at work goes viral and Baby finds herself with options she could never have imagined – including the possibility of leaving her birthplace to represent Makoko on the world stage.

But will life beyond the lagoon be everything she’s dreamed of? Or has everything she wants been in front of her all along?

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Reviews

Chioma Okereke's new novel blazes with energy and joy. Come to explore this forgotten corner of Lagos, but stay for the inspiring characters and luminous prose
Charlotte Rogan, author of THE LIFEBOAT
Water Baby is one of those rare books that takes you somewhere utterly unfamiliar and makes you feel instantly at home. A delight from page one; it's funny, intriguing, vibrant, and beautifully written. You can almost smell the black waters of the Lagos lagoon beneath the floating settlement of Makoko. It's all so vivid, you'll feel like you've been there!
Simon Toyne, author of Sanctus
An adventurous and insightful read. I enjoyed the vivid descriptions of Makoko, their powerful spirit and resilience to overcome the challenges of their daily lives and Water Baby's loyalty to her community. It reminds us all that when opportunity is given change can be made from the most unlikely source
Rosanna Amaka, author of The Book of Echoes
In gorgeous, startling prose, Okereke gives us a moving story of loss, love, community, and dreams. Okereke writes her characters with so much heart that we feel that these are people we know as intimately as they know themselves.
Chika Unigwe, author of THE MIDDLE DAUGHTER
From the deep, dark lagoon of the Makoko slum where canoe boats steer through dirt and debris to the gentle blue lakes of Switzerland, water is at the heart of this beguiling novel. Chioma Okereke has crafted a dynamic, memorable narrator in Yemoja, who sees herself as one pinprick on a map but whose youthful energy and curiosity lifts her on a wave towards new experiences. A captivating, surprising, beautifully structured narrative about grief and loss, but also strength, joy and the value of friendship
Gemma Seltzer, author of WAYS OF LIVING
Such a beautifully written novel, full of vibrant imagery and characters who leap off the page. I loved going on Baby's journey with her. This book serves as a reminder that often what we dream of is right in front of us
Louise Hare, author of MISS ALDRIDGE REGRETS
A brilliant evocative read. In Okereke's hands, Makoko is a world full of heart and beauty
Irenosen Okojie. author of BUTTERFLY FISH
It's rare to read a book that makes you see the world with fresh eyes but, as a former Lagos resident, that's exactly how I felt about Water Baby. Through a colourful cast of characters and her evocative portrayal of their floating environment, Chioma Okereke invites us into a dynamic and often overlooked community. Just like the people of Makoko, this novel simmers with beauty and potential and you can't help but root for its heroine, Baby, as she earns her wings
Uju Asika, author of BRINGING UP RACE
A beautiful, evocative work. Her characters linger, and her writing glides like boats through the lagoon, releasing the angst, scent and sounds of Lagos. Sometimes you come across a phrase that captivates you so much with its sweetness that you have to stop to taste it over and over again. I hope Water Baby will touch your heart as it touched mine
Ola Awunobi, author of A NURSE'S TALE
A beautiful story about the biggest floating settlement in the world. The writing was so rich that I could smell Makoko, I could taste the food and I could hear the characters. Chioma Okereke's sharp humour made me smile even when reading the saddest scenes. She gave the people of Makoko dignity and highlighted the importance of community. Water Baby is a book that will leave readers rethinking the way they've looked at areas like Makoko, giving us all a different perspective about the way the media portrays different societies
Foluso Agbaje, author of THE PARLOUR WIFE