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The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives by…

The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives (edition 2010)

by Titilola Alexandrah Shoneyin

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3835228,125 (3.5)97
Title:The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives
Authors:Titilola Alexandrah Shoneyin
Info:Profile (2010), Paperback, 256 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:"read 2012", relationship, sex, sexuality, marriage, africa, nigeria, infertility, contemporary, poligamy

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The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives by Lola Shoneyin



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English (48)  Italian (3)  Dutch (1)  All languages (52)
Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
More like 3.5. ( )
  CydMelcher | Feb 5, 2016 |
More like 3.5. ( )
  CydMelcher | Feb 5, 2016 |
More like 3.5. ( )
  CydMelcher | Feb 5, 2016 |
I began this months ago, but I put it down and forgot about it (I got distracted & couldn't remember where I put it).... It's like that.

This was an interesting book, but I found it to be slow reading, the characters a bit flat (not well developed), nor were they very likable. So I was never really invested in their stories...

From the back cover:
"When Baba Segi awoke with a bellyache for the sixth day in a row, he knew it was time to do something drastic about his fourth wife's childlessness."

Baba Segi: a large round, vain, and rich middle-aged man with a lusty & abundant appetite. He is the patriarch of a large family that now includes; four wives and seven children. Unbeknownst to him, his disregard of his first three wives via the introduction of his newest fourth wife is about to topple his apple cart.

Iya Segi: Number One wife, is powerful and wealthy in her own right. Not only does she run the household, but she runs numerous businesses outside of the house as well. She is shrewd and not to be disturbed, especially not by a fourth wife. She will protect her position, home & family no matter the cost.

Iya Tope, Number Two wife is a shy woman with a prevailing sense of decency and kindness. She loves life but she is ruled by fear.

Iya Femi: Number Three wife is a lazy cunning woman whose main concern is comfort and expensive gifts. Her main focus is to attain all of her desires, no matter the cost to the family.

Bolanle: Number Four wife is the youngest and educated. Education has made her wise for her years and position. Unfortunately her introduction to the family causes great jealousy in the other wives... and her secret, when unveiled, will expose the family's ugly truths and will rock them all to the very depts of their foundation.

Note: the names of the wives, Iya -, denotes Mother of Oldest child's name. Bolanle has no child, therefore is called by her familiar name.

Wow, what nasty people.... But I can see the circumstances of their characters, as living in rural Nigeria would mold them.

The story when I got into it was interesting and profoundly sad..... It showed a life that I could never imagine and was rich in the description, although as I said earlier, I felt the characters to be a bit flat.

At the end, I really couldn't tell who was narrating, but it didn't matter as the climax was satisfying. ( )
  Auntie-Nanuuq | Jan 18, 2016 |
i found this a very interesting book and, mostly, i liked shoneyin's style of writing. but i feel like it just didn't all come together well for me.

i enjoyed that we were given the voices of each of the wives, for the different histories and perspectives, and their personalities and 'roles' seemed well established and defined. but when the big moment arrives in the book... the reactions and conduct of two wives, in particular (the two who had been most aggressive in their mistreatment of bolanle), didn't gel for me with how they had been presented up to that point. (i hope i am explaining this well.) i realize that they likely were written like this with clear intention by shoneyin, to just be all out of fight by the point i am referencing. i guess i just expected... more from them. it was all kind of a fizzle at the end.

so as to not be too negative, i am glad i read this and i really do feel shoneyin did a wonderful job evoking the places and people in her novel. it is making for some very interesting discussions in the group in which i am reading this on GR. ( )
  Booktrovert | Apr 7, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lola Shoneyinprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tarasconi, IlariaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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for Tinuoye and Yetunde Sheoneyin
....and for Olaokun
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When Baba Segu awoke with a bellyache for the sixth day in a row, he knew it was time to do something drastic about his fourth wife's childlessness.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Baba Segi, a polygamous husband in modern-day Nigeria, believes his three wives and numerous children are a sign of his prosperity, success, and manhood, but his peaceful domain unravels when he brings home Bolanle, a quiet, college-educated woman as his fourth wife.
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Baba Segi's fourth wife, the young, college-educated Bolanle, sends his household into turmoil, causing his other three wives to become jealous and resentful and to plot her downfall.

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