My Little Girl by Seun Odukoya

My Little Girl

Genre Nonfiction with doses of fiction.

Blurb “Running was something Seun always did so well. Not the race-track 100 metres kind. More of the emotionally unavailable kind. Relationship issues? RUN. Work stress? RUN. He never dealt with issues if he could avoid them.

Until the 9th of September, 2007. Until his daughter. Still he tried to run. Until confronted with some uncomfortable truths and could no longer run.

My Little Girl captures snippets of the complicated relationship between a single father, his growing-in-a-hurry daughter and her mother in a rapidly changing world.”

Themes Self-discovery, Marriage, Family, Fatherhood and Love.

Editing Some errors. Needs better structural editing.

What worked? My Little Girl is a memoir of some sort. So, it’s nonfiction but as the author is a writer, there are doses of fiction (jara, fisi, salt and pepper). Kind of like reality shows which include some acting…

It is a compilation of several stories spanning six years about Seun, his life and his relationship with his daughter. He is estranged from his ex-wife but wants to be actively involved in his daughter’s life. The book chronicles how his relationship with his family grew over the years and how it saved him and helped him be a better person.

The events in the book are carefully written and Seun’s use of witty writing to describe them is the best thing since small chops. Yet, even in the humour, his narration is heartfelt and seems to bare it all (at least when he is writing about himself).

It was interesting to see Seun’s personal growth and introspection and his efforts to make co-parenting work. His relationship with his estranged wife is the icing on the cake.

When read as separate journal entries rather than a continuous story, it’s an engaging read about choices and consequences. Not always relatable but rings true and showcases the author’s talent as a writer/storyteller.

What didn’t work?

Lady B The book needs a creative editor to make it more cohesive. It’s disjointed and so a bit confusing.

I think Seun was trying to protect the privacy of the people in the book, so some parts are written in a “coded” manner that is difficult to understand and follow.

One loose end I would have liked to see tied up even if with a sentence is Nnenna. It sticks out like a sore thumb.

Mo Seun, telling your daughter that all boys disrespect girls and the girls must show boys that they deserve respect too is eew. I hope she doesn’t take your advice and she tells them to fuck off, if they ever disrespect her.

Just like small chops, if you do not get the right portion for the different chops in a pack it becomes less appealing. Imagine this book is a small chops pack filled with mostly puff puff, one samosa and one spring roll. Yeah, difficult to follow, abi? Disjointed is the word you are looking for. Ko flow.

Number of pages 448 on Okadabooks.

Publisher Self-published.

Damage N1,500 on Okadabooks.

Rating 6/10.

My Little Girl is available on Okadabooks.

This review was originally scheduled for July 22nd but had to be postponed to August 5 due to an issue with the Okadabooks reader which has now been resolved.

Do you like memoirs? Why or why not? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.


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