Book Review- The Last Bus by Qudus Oko-Osi

This week, we have on our grill something you may want to sit back and enjoy. Although we would recommend, you have some chilled drink handy just in case you feel like choking!

Our book review for this week is The Last Bus by Qudus Oko-Osi.

Story

The author presents a fast-moving thriller about a Nigerian graduate Akin living in the city of Lagos, who has searched for a job without success for many years but now gets an opportunity to land his dream job with the help of his friend. The only problem being that the interview was billed for 8 am the next morning in Port Harcourt. And so Akin makes his way to Port Harcourt on a late-night bus. Will he overcome the hurdles he will face on this journey and make it on time for the interview? Follow through on this action thriller and find out what happens.

Settings, Style and Language

The story opens in the city of Lagos and culminates somewhere between Ore in Ondo State and Edo State. The writer tickles our interest first by presenting what a typical day in Lagos is like for many commuters: conductor and driver ‘wahala’. Anyone who lives in Lagos or has lived in Lagos can readily identify with the events described. We thoroughly enjoyed the scene where Akin got into a scruff with the bus conductor.

The language is simple to read and the terms easy to understand. The author garnishes the story from time to time with pidgin English, Yoruba language, but carefully embeds the meaning of those Yoruba expressions so that it is understandable to the reader.

We told you the Last Bus is an action thriller, but prepare yourself for some good laugh as Qudus, tactfully melts in a generous dose of comedy, which, in fact, was a high point of this read. It’s incredible how one can laugh in the face of fear, and imminent danger. But Qudus succeeded in measuring and serving both genres in sufficient quantity by presenting funny characters like “Mother-in-the-Lord” who added spice and helped us manage our fears while we read.

But…

At some point, the stories and certain happenings sounded unbelievable even for fiction. We thought the author should have made the scenes a bit more realistic, perhaps giving the novel some verisimilitude. We have a scene where the protagonist and other passengers while running away from the robbers found a cave, encountered a gorilla that killed one of them before they all rallied and eventually killed it. There were so many other almost implausible scenes, things felt like over-cooked grilled chicken.  There were also grammar and spelling errors in the book, which made us think that the author needed an editor. 

And if this book were a song, it would be MI’s Action Film featuring Brymo.

The Verdict

We score this book three stars of deliciousness.

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August 6, 2020

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