This week, on February 14, our 7th anniversary, we will publish a new issue and an accompanying supplement of love poems by ‘Tunji Olalere.

The Crime Issue is our eighteenth issue and features short stories, poems and nonfiction writing by ‘Pemi Aguda, Moses Kilolo, Sihle Ntuli, Arthur Anyaduba, Owoyemi Ayomide, Nne Nwankwo, Obieri Agholor, Stephen Partington, and photographs by Eloghosa Osunde. We include memoir pieces by Katung Kwasu and by an inmate of a Nigerian prison, known to us as Sagir. Katung coordinates a reading initiative in the Kaduna prisons. Both Katung and Sagir write with unflinching emotional honesty. This is likely to be our best issue to date.

Our contributors are some of the finest writers producing work out of Nigeria and Kenya right now.

Velvet-Blue & Other Uncertainties by ‘Tunji Olalere is the fifth collection in our individual poetry chapbook series, released just in time for St. Valentine’s Day. We call it a tapestry of desire. Olalere has written stimulating book reviews for Wawa Book Review, which shows the range of his sentiments and concerns.

Have you read ‘Pemi Aguda’s “Caterer, Caterer,”—which won the 2015 Writivism Short Story Competition—and “Birdwoman,” and “Madness?” She’s given great interviews; in this one with Short Story Day Africa she says, “write, despite the convenient excuse of ‘life.’”

An Empty Wall,” a short story by Moses Kilolo, begins as follows: “All you want to know is what I am looking for in my memories.”

Sihle Ntuli contributed two poems to our Solitude Issue. Strangers, his first poetry collection, was published by an independent publisher in South Africa. “Ntuli chooses his words deftly, aware of the cumulative effects of sound and repetition, of assonance and alliteration…,” a reviewer wrote.

Arthur Anyaduba is our nonfiction editor, and recipient of the 2015 Vanier Scholarship, one of Canada’s prestigious academic scholarships. He says: “My research examines literatures that are written in response to genocidal violence. And what I love best about doing this kind of research – depressing when we remember that these experiences of atrocity happened to people and that many of these people touched the core of human suffering – is that it affords me the opportunity to ask deep, difficult, existential questions about our existence as humans, as well as affords me the chance to seek answers to some of these questions as best as I could.”

Nne Nwankwo and Obiaderi Agholor are two new poets whose earliest published work we are proud to publish. Here is a moving poem by Agholor, “Sunset.”

“Eloghosa Osunde writes beautifully. She is brave and unafraid to embrace sentiment. I loved the delicate sensibility of her work, her honest and subtle poetry of protest. I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I did.” Writes Chimamanda Adichie introducing “Shapes.”

The publications will be available for free download, as usual. We are excited about sharing them with you.

The Publishers and Editors, Saraba.

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