The Prophet of Zongo Street: Stories

Mohammed Naseehu Ali

The Prophet of Zongo Street: Stories

The Prophet of Zongo Street: Stories

  • Title: The Prophet of Zongo Street: Stories
  • Author: Mohammed Naseehu Ali
  • ISBN: 9780060887506
  • Page: 115
  • Format: Paperback

A dazzling collection of stories, The Prophet of Zongo Street takes readers to a world that seamlessly blends African folklore and myths with modernity Set primarily on Zongo Street, a fictitious community in West Africa, the stories which are reminiscent of the works of Ben Okri and Amos Tutuola introduce us to wonderfully quirky characters and the most uproarious,A dazzling collection of stories, The Prophet of Zongo Street takes readers to a world that seamlessly blends African folklore and myths with modernity Set primarily on Zongo Street, a fictitious community in West Africa, the stories which are reminiscent of the works of Ben Okri and Amos Tutuola introduce us to wonderfully quirky characters and the most uproarious, poignant, and rawest moments of life There s Kumi, the enigmatic title character who teaches a young boy to finally ask questions of his traditions And as Ali moves his characters to America we meet Felix, who struggles with America s love of the exotic in Rachmaninov The Prophet of Zongo Street heralds a new voice and showcases Mohammed Naseehu Ali s extraordinary ability to craft stories that are both allegorical and unforgettable.

Recent Comments "The Prophet of Zongo Street: Stories"

Ali creates a charismatic and vivid land for readers unfamiliar with Ghana. these tales exhibit a varied cast, but the themes presented here make this an excellent read and viable study for the current state of modern short fiction.

Six of the 10 stories in Mohammed Naseehu Ali's first book are set in Ghana, and the rest in and around New York.The Prophet of Zongo Street blends African folklore, dreams, the wisdom of elders and the pranks of children. Ranging from Zongo Street, the noisy fictional Muslim neighborhood where all the African stories take place, to the climate-controlled "lily-white enclave of Southampton" to the hip, trust-fund-backed art scene in Lower Manhattan, the collection is held together by Ali's conce [...]

I read this book while traveling through Ghana! It’s a transnational collection of stories that emerge from the author’s own position living as a Ghanaian Muslim from Kumasi who later immigrates to New York City, where he is an accomplished artist: writer and musician. These stories take place alternatively in Kumasi and New York, they deal with the rich culture of Hausa-speakers in a quarter of the bustling city of Kumasi, and race in NYC. Funny, stark, and enriching is how I describe this [...]

A storyteller motif prevails--the characters enjoy gossip and are storytellers. The settings of the stories alternate—one taking place on Zongo Street in Ghana, the next describing a Ghanian immigrant in NYC.Here are the basics of the stories:1. A grandmother describes the mythical birth and youth of a bad child as the reason for day and night. 2. Kumi, an intelligent man, is driven mad thinking about the imperialistic effects of Christianity and Islam on the Ghanian culture (a portrait of a w [...]

So this is a book of short stories, the first one I've come across on the shelf. I hope it isn't the last because I really like these. They're a breeze to read. The backbone to this entire book is that someone in the stories is probably from Ghana. Anyway, this book is a mixed bag of goodies. Oh the whole, I enjoyed it. When the book is dealing with issues of race or colonialization or imperialism and religion, it's pretty on point. When the book touches on gender issues it's not as cohesive. Th [...]

I seldom read short stories collection because it is usually left me dissatisfied with open ending or mediocre level writing stories in it. However, seeing this book in a shelves of a book store intrigued me to pick and bought it. I know nothing about Ghana and reading this may not illustrate 100% the people, culture or their country, but at least, I know a little bit about them. There are some of the stories that I can't shake them off right after finishing it, there are some I forgot about it [...]

Story kinda stories, like moral-free wrap-you-up-in-em yarns, gather round let me spin something to keep you listening. Ghana and New York City, the ones in Ghana taking a much more lilting, magical realist quality than the hard and sad New York stuff: immigration, racism, navigating conflicting worlds. One story with an unfortunate portrayal of non-consensual sex: sorry Ali, but sex with someone who's passed out is not the cat's meow, it's assault, and it was kinda fucked up of you to portray i [...]

The author certainly did a fine job of capturing the spirit of the various characters in this collection of short stories- both those situated on Zongo Street as well as those set abroad. The story of the man who couldn't satisfy his wife was particularly relevant to my work in terms of helping people to feel satisfied with their primary partner as a way of avoiding the transmission of HIV through concurrent partnerships. The story in NYC, with the drugs and the rape scene was particularly troub [...]

Ali is a master storyteller, and that's the beauty of this book. The stories set in Africa are especial poetic, but he does a good job of contrasting the warm, full world of Zongo Street with the cold and lonely reality of immigrant New York. He also does a good job raising questions about religion and what it means to be an outsider. However, there's something slightly amiss in his stories set in America -- they don't hold the reader as well as his stories set in Zongo Street do.

I found this short story collection to be rather uneven. In general, the stories that were set in Ghana were more successful than those set in New York. My least favourite story was "Rachmaninov". It felt very adolescent to me - and it badly exposed Ali's discomfort with portraying a character who is more "Americanized" and also very badly handled portrayals of women. Disappointing!The best story in this collection was "Malaam Sile" which I had read previously in the New Yorker.

Many of these stories are very good--the prophet is interesting, as are the robber and the struggling tea-shop owner. The stories are generally well told although it does seem as though some of them drag on too long. Overall, I think this collection will provide some good reading and some insight into storytelling from a region we often do not have represented in modern literature.

A collection of short stories. I picked this up as it was the basis for a movie (I can't remember which one though! I only remember I loved it). While some of the author's insight into life in America and Ghana can be fascinating, this isn't one of the best memoir/short story collections I've read. Worth skipping through.

I enjoyed this. This is a book of short stories by a Ghanaian writer alternately set in Ghana and Brooklyn, where the writer now lives. The voice and characters are better in the stories set in Ghana. The ones in Brooklyn are disturbing yet funny.

It's about half and half for me, but there are some real gems scattered in this collection of stories. In particular, the final two stories are wonderful. (Fair warning, there's an instance of date rape in one story about halfway through.)

Absolutely wonderful collection of short stories that take place either in Ghana or Brooklyn. There are some heartwarming stories and others that deal with life/death and the afterlife. It's a quick read and some of the stories will stay with you forever.

A mixed bag of short stories. Some of them, like the titular one, were fantastic reads, but others, such as "Rachmaninov," really made me struggle to keep interested. I agree with previous reviews that, overall, the Ghanian stories were a lot stronger than the New York stories.

Nice buffet of stories that stretch from Zongo Street in Ghana to immigrant's America. I was so reminded of Adiche's collection The Thing Around Your Neck, which follows the same pattern. Stories are well-told and precise. This Mohammed Naseehu Ali.I'm waiting for more!


I can't wait for this young author to write another book! This was a joy to read.

Aside from the anti-Sarah Lawrence sentiment, this book was ok. The stories set in Ghana ring more true than those set in New York.

I liked how the stories were interwoven a bit.

Literary short stories that straddle the comic and the dark, New York City and Ghana.

Available MCPL

SIX WORD REVIEW: Sit on hearth with old Uwargida.

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    Published :2019-03-07T17:13:51+00:00