Published by the Baha’i Publishing Trust in 1988, A Leaf of Honey and the Proverbs of the Rainforest is an incomplete autobiography/memoir written by Joseph Sheppherd, an anthropologist from the USA. In this work he sets out to learn the wisdom, beliefs, and proverbs of the Ntumu tribe, for a thesis in partial fulfillment of his first degree in anthropology. The Ntumus inhabit the Ntem river basin of south-central Cameroon, northern Rio Muni in Equatorial Guinea, and north-western Gabon.
Published in 2009 by Langaa RPCID, “Son of the Native Soil” is a novel set in the Dudum traditional area of the North-West region of Cameroon, and its principal character is Achamba, a secondary school teacher. Dudum is a clan; it’s also a traditional area inhabited by two consanguineous people sharing a common ancestor, Ngiekum. Dudum is made up of Lower Dudum, consisting of four villages whose chief village is Akan, and Upper Dudum consists of fifteen villages, the chief of which is Anjong. Despite their common ancestry, and the fact that they both speak the same language except for some slight differences in accent, these two villages are often in conflict. The bones of contention are mainly three: a land dispute, contention over whether the chief of Anjong or that of Akan should be the paramount chief of Dudum, contention over which of the two villages should be the administrative headquarters of Dudum.
Published in 2005 by ANUCAM Centre for Research and Development, The Power to Succeed is a novel set in four locations in Nigeria. The principal character, Mercy, comes from a family wallowing in penury. They often have to content themselves with either no breakfast or with cracking and eating palm kernels as breakfast; only the evening meal is assured. She and her sister sleep on a torn mat and whenever it rains the fury of the elements shakes their ramshackle village home as if to lift it off its foundation, and the torn mat gets drenched with rain water leaking from the roof. Once when lying on the mat soaked in rain water, she has a dream. In this dream she sees herself as the boss in a big office. Until the dream is fulfilled, Mercy has to brace up and traverse seventeen grueling years.
The principal character is Elome II, the paramount chief of the Mbwe clan of the Malende sub-division of the South-West region of Cameroon. Elome II’s uncle, seventy-year old Sango Sube makes plans for his son Ngabe to marry Ahone, a twenty-year old woman that he adores. But before this marriage takes place, Ngabe dies. Sango Sube, therefore, decides to marry her. Unknown to him, his nephew Elome II and Ahone fall in love with each other. This presents a conundrum: which of the suitors triumphs.
Mama and Papa are devout Catholics but Yaya is a pagan. Yaya comes to spend some time with her daughter, Mama, and her family and two types of conflict emerge: her undermining of some of her daughter’s parental, disciplinary measures, and her tenacity in upholding paganism in the face of opposition from her Catholic daughter and son-in-law.
In My Temptations, Kemonde Wangmonde narrates the story of a young man, Victor Nyiko, who rises from being a nonentity to a prosperous police officer. Encouraged by one of his teachers, the young Victor Nyiko seeks to become a teacher himself. But before he can sit for the entrance examination to get into a teachers’ training college, his role model leaves the teaching service. Victor’s father, who would rather see his son become a soldier just like him, forbids him from pursuing his dream.
As the title implies, Eneta vs. Elimo (published in 2008 by Édition CLÉ, Yaoundé), is a duel between two ladies, Eneta and Elimo, depicted in drama and set in Cameroon. At only 86 pages, this is a relatively short but action-packed read.
Published in 2011 by Nmi Education, Not Without My Wife is a novel set in Anglophone Cameroon. Going back to the colonial era, the novel depicts life in the plantations, and exposes the inhumane treatment that the plantation workers suffered.
As the title implies, “The Naming of Femi’s Brother,” is about a child-naming ceremony. The Aladetan’s are not only Yoruba but also members of the Bahá’í religion. But their religious persuasion does not make them discard their traditional way of naming their children.
In Unanswered Cries, award-winning Sierra Leonian writer, Osman Conteh tackles the subject of female circumcision. Set in Sierra Leone, the book centers around Olabisi, a 14-year old girl, who faces circumcision. While her father is Creole and opposes the practice, her mother, who is from the Temne tribe, is all for it. The parents are not married to each other and live apart.