Book Review: Akello by Abigail Arunga.

Akello, is basically a poetry book, written in a way I can only describe as SIMPLE & REAL. It’s about the feels, whatever they are. One day you could be feeling emo and it touches the right spot, another day you could be in a ‘bleh or meh’ mood and the part you were feeling yesterday is a complete nah, or you could be in a happy-go-lucky mood and the part you weren’t feeling, cracks you up a good one. You read on and wait for it capture your soul, the best way poetry knows to.

Akello, Abigail Arunga


The thing I love most about ‘Akello’, is that I can open any page and read without feeling like I’ve missed out on anything (the FOMO on pages in a book is real), or that I have to go page by page. It’s like that friend who even if you haven’t been in touch for a while, when you meet, you can pick up where you left off. It’s one of those you need to have in your handbag, just in case you need something that gives you the “you just got the words right of my mind, but of course I wouldn’t have said it like you have.”

Truth be told, I was never into poetry. High school had made it a bit too complex for my liking. That’s until I discovered my baby sister writes the best poems ever. She has a way with words. Then I had to learn to love poetry, especially feel & understand it, so that I can appreciate her type of writing, or connect with what’s going on in her mind (I bet she doesn’t know this part). I digress.

When Abby announced that she’d written and finally published a book, I was genuinely happy for her, because she’s one of those people. One of those people who just keep it real and say it as it is, bila regrets. I got to know her through social media (ShyNarcissist), and more through mutual friends. But when I found out it was a poetry book, I wondered how one reads those. I could read a poetry post, but a poetry book? That’s why I took ages to make my order.

The day she came to deliver the book, I tried to get some background on what got her putting together her poetry into a book and eventually publishing it. Strange enough, it was her making her childhood dream a reality. And despite the challenges, such as not getting a publisher, she decided that that was not going to be her dead end. So she went ahead and decided to self-publish. Which means you edit, design, print, distribute and market your book by yourself – if you’re lucky, with the help of your family & friends. I love her persistence. Her persistence to want to live her dream and make it work. Because in life, you could be doing so many things, but it only makes sense when you infuse them with your passion.

On reading poetry, I discovered that poetry is like medicine. You take it in doses, as its effects shoot straight into your mind or heart, or both, depending on the piece. You’re better off not overdosing, because you’ll barely understand a thing (equivalent to passing out and getting some temporary amnesia).

Today, I celebrate women like Abigail. Women who know what they’re passionate about, and keep pressing that button even when it’s not forthcoming, because they know it’s just a matter of time. Women that know, even if they’ve not been made a big deal just yet, they are a BIG DEAL. That even if you impact just one person (even if you aimed for the world), it’s better than none. That even if you sell just one book (even if you aimed for top-seller), it’s better than none.

Again, keep pressing that button, because it’s just a matter of time. Happy International Women’s Day.

Signing Off ~~~ *Kawi*