I attended Diana Evans' reading at Jazzhole yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed it. It was different from the other readings I've been to, because instead of reading several excerpts from the book, Diana read one long chunk. It was great for me, especially having read the book already. Afterwards there was a Q&A session, which was shaping up to be quite interesting. Then I was called outside to move my car because someone needed to leave (one of the downsides about Lagos is the lack of parking space). After I returned to the store, 1 or 2 more questions were taken and then we had the opportunity to buy the books and get them signed.
I took my copy of 26a with me and Diana signed it. She looks petite in magazines, but appears even more so in real life. She had some great shoes on, which I spotted from my vantage position up close to the 'reading area.' I also adored her hair, which was a huge, gold-hued afro.
Jazzhole is a great setting for any reading, because (well, aside from being a bookshop) it is so cosy and intimate. During readings or in-store performances, chairs are closely-set next to each other and the lights usually dimmed. I love it! After any event, guests of-course can browse their vast book and music collection and many usually purchase something.
I have to say that it's a great thing that Cassava Republic is doing by bringing quality literature to Nigerian readers. Copies of 26a were being sold yesterday for N1,000 apiece. Not bad! CR also have a number of books coming out in the next year. I'm looking forward to reading Teju Cole's novel, based on his trip home last December and his writings, which he published on his blog. This is an example of blogs being a launch-pad to other forms of media and arts i.e. novels, films, plays. So a blog is not just a blog anymore, people!
It was an opportunity to meet the lovely Bibi of CR and Jeremy Weate of naijablog. It's great to meet people who you've interacted with online. It felt like I knew them already. Here's to meeting more online peeps soon.