Posted in book review

Mama Can’t Hurt Me

Book Title: Mama Can’t Hurt Me

Author: Mbugua Ndiki

Pages: Hard copy-324

Genre: Fiction

Setting: Kenya

My rate on GR: 3/5

Published: 2004

Are you sure? Wairimu’s world is been shredded. She has defied the traditional archaic beliefs, dogmas religion and wants to be free. Free from her parents who are staunch Christians who have set rules for her, free from her village that seems to kill her with boredom each and every single day. She yearns for the city. Big dream she has. However, the city readily welcomes the naïve youths with warm arms. It hugs their fair skin, experiments their untouched bodies, introduces them to who is who and before long Wairimu finds herself in a motherly way.

Back home shame cannot be associated with her pure family forcing her parents to throw her out. Mama’s place becomes her fortress. At Mama’s prostitution is traded with working at the bar. She finds a mother in Mama but Mama has other plans for her. Her business is expanding and going international is the kill. She first must abort Wairimu’s ‘bastard’but Mwikali becomes the sister she never had always advising Wairimu. It is after Mwikali kills everyone that gets into Wairimu’s way to freedom that the ball starts rolling.

Wairimu must be eliminated. Mama’s plan is not to kill her (she sees someone to reckon with) but her co-workers plan is to finish her. In this twist of events Wairimu faces pain, torture, rape and she readily welcomes death. In her attempt to escape, she is accused of killing high end politicians, attempting suicide and jail becomes her home. In here she finds Mama Juma (an activist arrested for causing trouble through her endless movements) who fights for her rights from crooks sent to end her life. Samuel, her crush, sets out to save her with the help of friends.

Mbugua Ndiki explores the hustle and bustle of the youth to making it in the city. He focuses on how many want to get out of the poverty cradle but earthly vices stop them from achieving those dreams. Through characters, he exposes religion, politicians, corrupt police reforms, corrupt judiciary and those who go about helping young girls only to turn them into a profit making venture. He also brings out the element of a second chances through families. It is a nice read however, Mbugua distracts a reader through long descriptive chapters that derails its course. If you are the impatient type it forces you to skip some pages to catch up from where you stopped.

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