Thursday, December 13, 2007
Namondo. Child of the Water Spirits by Ntemfac Ofege
Chaos reigned in the firmament, until the ageless spirit Ovase Lova breathed and created dawn. Stars from his fingertips jewelled the heavens and newborn planets radiated throughout the vast universe. The river gods now dispatch Namondo, a liengu-la-mwanja or water spirit, to the land. The child of the water spirits, alongside her twin brother, has come to purge the land of an evil cult. Namondo uses her magic ring to accomplish her task, but disaster strikes. The fearsome ring of the water spirits must return to her son. Ntemfac Ofege weaves a tale combining yesterday and today, the living dead and the living, tradition and modernity, scoundrel and righteous deities.
This mythological narrative is rooted in that uproarious extravaganza called Africa – land of vicious serpents and elephant-doubles. Ripe with transfigurations and transformations, this novel promises to be a spirited and lingering read for all those who navigate multiple cultures, languages, times and geographies.