Manchester Happened by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi

Manchester Happened by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi

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Critically acclaimed author of “Kintu”, Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi brings us this collection of 12 short stories, divided into two sections - one half concentrating on Ugandans’ experiences in Britain, specifically Manchester, and the other on Ugandans returning to Uganda after some years away.

Two very distinct settings which could not be more different. One a busy UK city and the other a sprawling and chaotic capital of Uganda. The people telling these stories are average people, average immigrants who have similar stories to tell as any other immigrant would. However, every character in the book reads more like a person you might know. They are all real, very vividly drawn and with interesting personalities to match. This shine on characterisation adds so much from the stories.

There’s lots of funny moments too. “Did you know the sun has moods?” “Living in Britain is like living inside a fridge.” “And as for gargoyles, why do people in rainy Manchester carve ugly faces on their buildings?”  


Makumbi writes in a cool, unfaltering style that engages the reader straightaway. She presents her characters’ experiences and dilemmas with insight and delicacy.

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