Trials of the Migrant Life

Trials of the Migrant Life

Things Are Good Now, the debut collection by Ethiopian-Canadian author Djamila Ibrahim, features nine well-crafted short stories that chronicle painful quests for belonging. Its main characters are displaced people – refugees, migrants, and immigrants – with heavy dreams. Many of them have literal nightmares prompted by memories of torture, imprisonment and other such traumatic experiences they endured in their home country.

Unearthing our Africas

Unearthing our Africas

“I moved to Kalabo when I was 26 years old. Nothing but a black-soil prairie girl from North Dakota. A bride of six weeks married to a blue-eyed boy from the Netherlands,” she says in the prologue to her memoir about this time, So Many Africas. “We stayed six years, and then we moved away. . . . I put Africa behind me. I moved on. Or at least I tried to, but I could not dig deep enough to forget.”

A widow’s tale of painful wonder

A widow’s tale of painful wonder

Readers familiar with Toibin’s other novels and stories will not be surprised that Nora’s relationship with her two sons is central to the story. Having lost his own father at a young age, and raised by his mother in rural Ireland, it would be a fair assumption that Nora Webster contains at least a few autobiographical elements that give added truth to his observations.