Book REVIEW: The Private Joys of Nnenna Malony by Okechukwu Nzelu

September 30, 2020

The Private Joys of Nnenna Malony

Okechukwu Nzelu

I read this in one go, it bounced along with the narrative possessing me, keeping me enthralled and entertained in equal measure. What a fun read, with some seriously contemporary takes on modern UK life.  The books follows protagonist Nnenna Maloney growing up into a possibly Queer woman and seeking  more understanding of her  Igbo-Nigerian culture and of her absent father. Her searching and wanting some insight and answers is straining her relationships with her mother Joanie.  Around these two swirl a selection of warm characters, all on their own journeys of self-expression, seeking meaning in their wonderfuly distinct, intersectional identities.  Set in present day Manchester which forms the backdrop for Nnenna’s adventures, this spot on northern metropolitan voice is endlessly funny. Sharply observing the contradictions of modern urban life, sharing a delighted love of the city of Manchester, and of its weirdly adorable residents, Nzelu’s voice, original and so beautifully bold gives us insight into Nnenna’s world as she finds some answers,  but unfurling more questions on race, sexuality, class and the whys and how’s of belonging.

The book gives a warm deep insight into how what you are, doesn’t define how you can or should be, but done with wit and some redemption along the way.

Out now £16.99

For more info or to buy the book see the publishers website here: