The Half-God of Rainfall by Inua Ellams

From the award-winning poet and playwright behind Barber Shop Chronicles, The Half-God of Rainfall is an epic story and a lyrical exploration of pride, power and female revenge. There is something about Demi. When this boy is angry, rain clouds gather. When he cries, rivers burst their banks and the first time he takes a shot on a basketball court, the deities of the land take note. His mother, Modupe, looks on with a mixture of pride and worry. From close encounters, she knows Gods often act like men: the same fragile egos, the same unpredictable fury and the same sense of entitlement to the bodies of mortals. She will sacrifice everything to protect her son, but she knows the Gods will one day tire of sports fans, their fickle allegiances and misdirected prayers. When that moment comes, it won’t matter how special he is. Only the women in Demi’s life, the mothers, daughters and Goddesses, will stand between him and a lightning bolt.


[His layup will start from mountains / not with landslide, rumble or gorgon clash / of titans, but as shadow-fall across stream PORTRAIT OF PROMETHEUS AS A BASKETBALL PLAYER]


(@4thEstateBooks, 4 April 2019, audiobook, 1 hours 17 minutes, borrowed from @natpoetrylib via @OverDriveLibs, narrated by the poet)




I’d never heard of the poet before. I decided to read this because I loved the cover and the blurb intrigued me. I loved every second of the poetry collection. I need to read more by Ellams. If this is anything to go by I’m in for a treat. I love mythology and the Greek god’s are among my favourites. I loved the blend of ancient myth and modern life on offer here, very reminiscent of another awesome poetry collection, Brand New Ancients by Kate Tempest. I’ve not read or heard a poetry collection quite like this before. I loved every word. This shows impressive skill and talent. I didn’t want to stop listening. This is an amazing blend of myth, fantasy and modern life.

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