Interviewing Ebi Akpeti and An Introduction of Her Latest Book
Interviewing Ebi Akpeti
Today, we have the pleasure to interview Ebi Akpeti, author of “God has a Sense of Humor.”
Ebi is a Nigerian-born United States-based Author. Her other books with titles, Growing Pains, Castrated, The Perfect Church and Uncle Bolu have received great reviews in local and international press. Her most popular book, “The Perfect Church,” was turned into a screenplay and was one of the highest-grossing books to screen production in West Africa in 2011.
According to Akpeti, she wanted to write a story that talks about women and the issues they face in a way that is heartfelt, real, and humorous. She gathered information and ideas for this book from her own personal experience, divine inspiration, and the bible. She loves all the stories in the book which took her a year to complete but she is particular fond of Singlelaria, (a word which she coined) because she can totally relate to it.
Introduction of the Book
“God has a sense of humor” is a collection of seven short funny, heartfelt true-to-life stories that explores numerous concerns in the life of a woman. The first edition of this book was published in the UK in 2014. The second edition was published for the US market by Movement Publishing in March 2021. Each story with creatively crafted titles (A Prison with Golden Gates, The Gong That Should Have Deafened Me, God Has a Sense of Humor, Death Is No Longer a Rumor, Singlelaria, The Woman that Marries for Money and Life Can Only Be Understood Backwards) is laced with humor and compassion and leaves a message of hope in its path.
Prison with Golden Gates
‘A Prison with Golden Gates ‘depicts the torments experienced by women because of their cheating husbands. See excerpts below.
I miss my husband’s girlfriends. Whenever he was having an affair, he became a new man; more witty, more talkative, and friendlier. He shaved daily and traded his frayed underwear for snug boxer briefs. Whenever they broke up with him, I suffered with him as he would always, somehow, take it out on me and turn my life and our home into a living hell. Even our dismal sex life was affected. Call it the guilty husband syndrome, but a few years ago, I discovered that whenever we were intimate, it meant he was going to be intimate with someone else the very next day. But even that stopped years ago. My marriage had come to a point where I was happier when he was happy in his extramarital affairs. I know it sounds strange I used to see it that way too, but I don’t see it that way anymore. This Saturday, as I watched my husband, Akin mope around the house, looking like the weight of the world was on his shoulders, I suspected that some errant girlfriend had caused his current malady. Perhaps, she had found out he was married or had grown bored with him and decided to look for some other lover. I would have told him it served him right, but I knew the consequences. All I could do was feel sorry for him and for myself, and hope that I could find a way to placate him before things got worse. I summoned up courage—yes, it is funny that to go near my husband, I had to summon courage and even plead the blood of Jesus— went over to him and placed a hand gently on his shoulder.
“Are you all right?” I asked in a gentle voice, desperate not to annoy him.
He turned slowly and looked at me as if a filthy, homeless person had touched him. He stared in disbelief at the hand I placed on his shoulder, and I quickly snatched it away…
The Gong That Should Have Deafened Me
‘The Gong That Should Have Deafened Me’ expresses the danger of trying to manipulate love See excerpts:
But from that moment, my perfect life evaporated into thin air. Maybe it never existed. Maybe it was just a fairy tale that I created in the dark corners of my mind, because the perfect man—the one that I was supposed to share the rest of my life with, the one that I thought was my soul mate—had just shattered my world. It didn’t help matters that I had given him the ammunition. For days, I kept playing the phone conversation over in my head. I was in a zombie mode, alive but not existing. What was it Dan had said? That he loved me, didn’t he? But he also said clearly, ‘She is the one!’ That was the part I didn’t want to hear. I had been waiting for four years for his pendulum to swing in my direction, so how could he just fall in love with my best friend at one glance?…
God Has a Sense of Humor
‘God Has a Sense of Humor’ the story that gave the book the name tells of a woman’s triumph through submission and prayer. See excerpts:
“Over my dead body! It is only over my dead body that you will bring that child into this house. I am giving you just one week to get rid of that child. One week!” My husband left the threat hanging and stormed out of the bathroom. It was not some evil child from a faraway village. It was not an illegitimate child I picked up from under the bridge. It was not a child from an adulterous affair. The child in question was a baby in my womb, put there by God, through the same man who was asking me to get rid of it. As my husband slammed the bathroom door, I sat, dejected, on the bed. Okay, fine, we had agreed that we would not have any more children because we felt three kids was enough. But why do men always have a way of making these things look like it is the women’s fault? Did I get myself pregnant? I took precautions—we both did— but according to the doctor, sometimes these things happen, even after ten years of safe family planning…
Death Is No Longer a Rumor
In ‘Death is no longer a Rumor,’ the reader is faced with the brevity of life through the eyes of a woman living with HIV. See excerpt below:
Like a magician that lets you see behind the curtain, everything suddenly became clear. Norman was the perfect husband, one who never forgot a birthday or an anniversary, and who loved our daughter and me tremendously. But now, I finally understood why we never had a normal sex life, why most times he insisted we use a condom, even when I told him I wanted another child, why he kept his toothbrush, shaving sticks, and clippers in a different area of the bathroom, far away from my own, and why, despite the money he had, he only used one doctor, an old cousin of his who owned a hospital in the seedy side of town. The question was not whether he had the virus; it was whether he intentionally infected me with it.
I was at the airport to pick him up two days later. I let him kiss me, and the touch of his lips on mine was cool. Once home, I ran him a bath and sat with him as he ate dinner, responding to his summary of the trip as best as I could, over the lump of anger in my throat.
“You sure know how to take care of your man, girl,” he said, as he took a sip of water, signaling the end of his meal. “How did I get so lucky?”
“Explain this, please,” I finally said, holding up one of the containers where he hid his medication…
‘Singlelaria’ explore the insensitivity of society to the plight of the single lady and the woman who decides to stay single by choice.
It was not like I was looking for something out of this world. All I wanted was to be with someone who loved me completely; someone in my life that I was attracted to; someone who knew the meaning of clichés like “unconditional love,” “partner in crime,” and “till death do us part.” Instead, I was stuck with Edward and his ilk—men who wanted my body and nothing more. If I disappeared tomorrow, would they even notice? I opened my legs for them every time and for that reason alone, perhaps, I would be missed, but what I needed was to be wanted, really wanted as a person, for myself. By all appearances, my life seemed fantastic . . . I had a great job, good friends, and a loving family. With all that I had to offer; my friends called me a “good catch. “But if I was such a good catch, why had no one caught me? Why did the love boat pass me? Was I too ugly to board? “I got up from the bed and stood in front of the mirror, scrutinizing every inch of my face and body. Maybe I was ugly. My nose was big, my legs a little bit skinny, but I was not bad looking at all, but the thought was not even consoling. Even a dummy would know that beauty had never been a major consideration for marriage, because, every Saturday, every single Saturday and some Fridays too, “ugly” girls got married. I was reaching out to turn off the bedside lamp when I heard footsteps coming towards my room. I drew my hand back, flopped down onto my bed, and pretended to be asleep.,,,
The Woman that Marries for Money
‘The Woman that Marries for Money is a rude awakening to the evils of eating a forbidden fruit.
But I wasn’t joking. In the real world, the humble do not inherit the earth. In fact, from what I have seen, the meek always got trampled. I believed turning the other cheek was sometimes necessary, but that only left one with bruised cheeks. I believed that a woman could decide her destiny because she had choices, and that if a woman wasn’t sure of what she wanted, she may end up letting vital opportunities slip — opportunities that may never come her way again. That was my mantra, one I held for years. So, when I met Pamela’s husband, the rich businessman, at her graduation ceremony, I refused to argue with the good fortune that sent him my way. I tempted and diverted his attention from Pamela and her children for three good years. You know the nursery rhyme which said, Humpty Dumpty fell from that wall? That was how he fell for me— in pieces. The day Pamela introduced him to me, he looked at my face for a few seconds, and afterwards stared at my chest like it was a gold mine. He then reached out and shook my hands. He had a gold ring on his fourth finger, and the glint from it should have told me he was off limits, but, if he didn’t see the ring on his own finger, why should I?…
Life Can Only Be Understood Backwards
The last tale, ‘Life Can Only Be Understood Backwards, reveals a message for humanity and the peace that comes when we do not judge. It ends with the saying “Regardless of the question, love is the answer.
It was my thirty-first birthday and Kayode was going to propose that evening. I knew it and I was excited. How did I know? Well, like I said, I was a thirty-one-year-old woman. When you get to that age, you will know when a man is about to propose. You would know because at that age, you would have given him enough clues and subtle hints for him to do it. Besides, I had seen the ring. I saw it in one of those velvety sweet little boxes engagement rings usually came in, hidden in his glove compartment. There was even a little inscription on it: To the love of my life, Sarah. So, as my birthday came closer, my womanly instincts told me that he would propose on that day. About two weeks to my birthday, it occurred to me that things were not as they used to be in our relationship. I was noticing some strange signs. Perhaps the signs had been there for some time, but I had been too excited at the forthcoming proposal that I hadn’t noticed. In those two weeks, we talked less and even when we did talk, our conversations were very superficial. We hardly had our usual laughter. I knew he was the one withdrawing because it was neither in the habit nor best interest of a typical thirty-one-year-old woman to withdraw when her dream man was about to propose in a matter of weeks…
Follow Ebi Akpeti on Social Media