Wizard of the Crow
Ngugi wa Thiong'o
In exile now for more than twenty years, Kenyan novelist, playwright, poet and critic Ngugi wa Thiong’o has become one of the most widely read African writers. Commencing in “our times” and set in the fictional “Free Republic of Aburiria,” Wizard of the Crow dramatizes with corrosive humor and keenness of observation a battle for control of the souls of the Aburirian people. Fashioning the stories of the powerful and the ordinary into a dazzling mosaic, this magnificent novel reveals humanity in all its endlessly surprising complexity.
dignity. Machokali, in response to a gesture from the Ruler, grabbed the microphone to announce that the ceremony was officially over. When Machokali next looked around the Ruler and the other ministers were nowhere to be seen. The muddy pool had grown bigger, and his shoes were now half sunk in the darkish mess. The smell was that of a mixture of urine and shit, but he could not tell for sure what the substance was. He ran toward his car, no longer caring what was happening around him, and he
and the City Council was finally forced to hire the same two companies, owned by Soi, Runyenje, Moya, and Kucera, to plant and maintain plastic flowers and trees all around while also regularly pouring perfume into the pool. Who were these women? was the question most frequent on people’s lips. The question, whether asked by those who had been absent or by those who claimed to have been present, was only the rhetorical commencement to more storytelling. Those absent would recycle what they had
respective bosses on their mobile phones, simultaneously informing them that the wizard was in tow. At the agreed-upon time, A.G. had quickly dialed Machokali’s number to tell him the news. A.G. emphasizes how happy the minister sounded, that A.G. had never heard him exude such joy. “True! Haki ya Mungu. I knew the minister quite well, nearly all his moods. He and I were in America together, remember? He and I used to share meals, and it was he and I who went to receive the Wizard of the Crow
that was not meant to be, he was now on his own. A loner by nature, he disliked public speaking, and here was a multitude in rapt attention! He had taken on the identity of the Wizard of the Crow as a cover, a joke, and now he was expected to be true to that identity. He was hardly here of his own volition, and now he had to speak as if he had come willingly! He hated lies and lying, even for private gain, and now he was expected to lie publicly for another’s gain. He had wanted to root his life
agreed that some police had been dispatched to Nyawĩra’s workplace with a warrant for her arrest. 3 Two of the policemen, with Kaniũrũ as their informant, sat at separate tables in the Mars Café, waiting to pounce on Nyawĩra on her way to the offices of Eldares Modern Construction and Real Estate. Three in plainclothes were deployed at strategic points around the area. Perched in his accustomed corner, reading or trying to read a newspaper, Kaniũrũ was so conscious of the weight of the