New Book: Hot off the press!
Desert Haiku takes the reader on an unforgettable journey through the enchanting sands, seas, and skies of the United Arab Emirates. Through vibrant poetic storytelling, Abimbola Gbemi Alao awakens each reader to the inherent magic of the UAE desert beyond the sand dunes and Dubai skyscrapers. Above all, this riveting collection of haiku is a symphony of vivid imagery, from medicinal ghaf trees and fragrant Arabian jasmine to historical dhow yards, luscious desert foliage and iridescent marinas.
Abimbola Alao’s ‘Desert Haiku’ gives us images of the UAE unlike any we’ve ever read, seen, or imagined. From the beach to the sky, the desert to the city, these poems deliver a thoughtful panegyric on the Emirates as a place of modern and natural wonder.
Professor Anthony Caleshu
Poet and Associate Head of School – Research, Knowledge Exchange and Enterprise, University of Plymouth, UK
Abimbola’s skilful interpretation of this poetic form is awe-inspiring. In one breath, the reader is transported from one Arabian adventure to another. The rhythm of the haiku represents a modern experience of this land of contrasts. With musicality and other literary devices, Abimbola’s verses represent nature and culture, borne on the wings of the haiku.
Dr. Susan Waller
Department of Medical Education, College of Medicine and Health Sciences
United Arab Emirates University, UAE
Abimbola Alao carries us through an environment that some of us don’t often explore. However, in reality, is this closer to us to venture into than we think? Abimbola connects us across our continents and our own narrative. She sees what the camera can’t tell us, what appears and shimmers in our peripheral light, an alteration of texture, substance and form. She describes the richness of the UAE playfully with profundity. Each haiku can be savoured individually, or you can read all and flow with the land as one.
Dr. Daranee Boon
Clinical Lead in Medical Humanities, Peninsula Medical School
Plymouth University, UK
Abimbola’s words, so intricately arranged, invite you to come on a pleasant journey to the UAE. You will enjoy the landscape, the foggy night beyond the lone star and a meeting with a flamboyance of flamingos, before revisiting the mountains once more. The author’s artfully arranged collection of haiku summons her readers to explore their own journey of discovery, belonging and identity. The reader will keep coming back to the poems time and time again.
English Teacher, The Broxbourne School, Hertfordshire, UK
Abimbola’s beautifully illustrated haiku collection is a masterpiece! The allusion to historical, cultural and other monumental artifacts makes the collection informative because it enables readers to take a peek into the land’s topography. This work is also preservatory because it provides a lens through which the future generation can see some of the UAE’s natural history, juxtaposed with the modern beauty of the country. This book would be a valuable resource for schools.
English Teacher, Wesgreen International School, Sharjah UAE
Alao takes you by the hand into the desert and culture of the seven emirates. Her medium is haiku, and like Basho in The Narrow Road to the Deep North, she has created a ‘travel guide’ that allows you to feel both the beauty and harshness of the world, as she writes…
I greet the wind that’s pelting
my face with pebbles”
Come on this pleasant journey with her; she is waiting for you there.
Gary Glazner, founder and Executive Director, Alzheimer’s Poetry Project, Illinois, USA
Desert Haiku enables us to explore various aspects of the UAE, such as: the beauty and the bling, the sometimes harsh weather and the harmony of the dunes.
It can be read as a collection of snap-shots, which can be shuffled and enjoyed in any order, or as a narrative that takes the reader on a tour around the Emirates, the traditions, and natural landscapes. Delightfully, one can sip from two or three haikus at a time, or read through for a complete picture – and then read again. It is a collection to savour.
Lecturer, Medical Communication and Study Skills, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, UAE
The Legendary Weaver: New Edition is available as paperback and Ebook on Amazon
The Legendary Weaver is set in Nigeria, where Kike the protagonist, lives with her mother Aduni, in a small, remote village. A serious bout of fever leaves Kike weakened. She recovers slowly but gradually loses her hearing until, in her early teens, she is totally deaf.
After a period of deep depression, she turns her disability into a challenge and this challenge into wondrous capability. She learnt a trade and later became the inventor of a wonderful African scalp plaits that many people wear today.
"Told in a simple, sometimes earthy style, this story is a parable and moral tale, a paean to the indomitability of the human spirit."
Niyi Osundare, Poet and Literary Critic
Dear Toriola... is available in paperback and Ebook on Amazon
Perimenopause is a topic that many people shy away from. However, it doesn’t stop women as young as 35 experiencing harrowing symptoms of hormonal imbalance.
When you are plagued with heavy monthly periods, hot flushes, mood swings, insomnia, panic attacks and pain, the world feels like a lonely wilderness.
Written in the epistolary style, this book is packed with practical tips and strategies on how you can alleviate difficult symptoms of perimenopause.
'Dear Toriola... gives such intimate insight that anyone who reads it will be ready to travel with Wura on her journey to a healthy and happy life. Abimbola’s narrative is transformational. I believe readers will be eager to adopt the strategies for overcoming the problems associated with perimenopause'.
Prof Lystra Hagley-Dickinson, Scholar and Literary Critique, UK.
'This book is a unique contribution to literature about perimenopause. The empowering holistic approach encourages women to be more proactive and hopeful about their health and wellbeing. Abimbola Alao’s fascinating epistolary style sends a deeply personal, yet accessible and relevant message to readers, concerning an often daunting time of women’s lives'.
Dr Ronke Awe, Consultant Obstetrician & Gynaecologist, UK.
About the Author:
Abimbola is a writer, lecturer and researcher. Her research explores the influence of psychosocial intervention for dementia care. Abimbola taught creative writing and storytelling at Plymouth Marjon University from 2007–2018. She is currently a visiting lecturer in Medical Humanities at the Peninsular Medical School, University of Plymouth, UK.
Abimbola is an award-winning author, performance storyteller and playwright. Her short play Legal Stuff won the BBC and Royal Court Theatre’s 24 Degrees Writing Competition in 2008. She is the author of Dear Toriola, Let’s Talk About Perimenopause, The Legendary Weaver: New Edition, Trickster Tales for Telling, The Goshen Principle and How to Enhance your Storytelling With Music. Abimbola is also a children’s book translator, and her work includes Yoruba translations of the classics ‘Hansel and Gretel’, ‘The Little Red Hen and the Grain of Wheat’, and several other books published by Mantra Lingua.
MY WORLD OF BOOKS
I love writing, translating and creating books. I also thoroughly enjoy working with writers as they explore various genres or forms.