This is a story that I have not yet read. I am part of a wonderful book club and this is a book that they had recently read before I joined. It is highly rated amongst the books that we have read and I can see why!
In short, the story is about four brothers whose parents have high hopes for them growing to become respected professionals. They are out fishing one day – against their parents wishes – when they come into contact with a local madman. He is an oracle of sort and what he says to them is internalised by the oldest brother in particular and that belief influences his actions and leads to the eventual downfall of their family.
A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of watching this story unfold on stage in a theatre production It was first performed on stage in September and that should have been it, but following this sold-out first run and incredibly positive reviews it received, it was put on again in November/December.
I went to see the show alone at the Arcola Theatre in my local borough of Hackney and let me just say right now that if it was still running, I would not hesitate to purchase tickets to go see it again – I might even take a friend along with me! :p
With all the key characters in the story, I was astonished that the narrative was carried by just actors. And what an incredible job they did. If anyone came and told me that two people could successfully communicate a story involving ten characters, I would have told them, “Well, I doubt it will be any good.” But, boy was I wrong. I went to the theatre production having a very basic overview of the general storyline. I’m that person who reads the synopsis/blurb of every story and watches the trailer of every film. I didn’t think the storyline was extraordinary in any way but they way that the story was played out was exceptional. Biggest shout out to the actors Michael Ajao and Valentine Olukuga and playwright Gbolohan Obisesan.
The Fisherman by Chigozie Obioma was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize for the best literary novel published in English in the UK in 2015.
If it was still playing, I would say, ‘Book your ticket to go watch it right now.’ So, instead, I will say, ‘Read this book!’
Featured image taken from https://www.arcolatheatre.com/event/the-fishermen/