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Book of the month - A SMALL SILENCE by Jumoke Verissimo

Imprisoned for ten years for his rage against society, activist and retired academic Prof resolves to live a life of darkness after his release from prison. He holes up in his apartment, pushing away friends and family, and embraces his status as an urban legend in the neighbourhood until a knock at the door shakes his new existence.

His new visitor is Desire, an orphan and final year student, who has grown up idolising Prof, following a fateful encounter in her hometown of Maroko as a child. Tentatively, the two begin to form a bond, as she returns every night at 9pm to see him. However, the darkness of the room becomes a steady torment, that threatens to drive Desire away for good.

A Small Silence is an intimate and evocative debut charges us to look again at the alienating effects of trauma and the power of solitude and darkness to ignite the imagination.

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Jumoke Verissimo

Jumoke Verissimo is a Nigerian poet and writer. Her first book, I Am Memory, has won some literary awards in Nigeria. Some of her poems are in translation in Italian, Norwegian, French, Japanese, Chinese, and Macedonian. She has a master’s degree in African studies (performance) from the University of Ibadan and a bachelor’s degree in English literature from the Lagos State University. She has worked as an editor, sub-editor, copywriter and a freelance journalist for major newspapers such as Guardian and NEXT. Jumoke currently lives in Canada with her daughter, where she is studying for a PhD.