Oprah Winfrey has picked a book of short stories, Say You’re One of Them, written by a Nigerian Jesuit priest as her 63rd Book Club selection. This guarantees that the Jesuits will be a lot richer this year.
I’m just joking – sort of. Anything Oprah proclaims as readable turns golden, but the Jebbies, like all religious-order priests, take a vow of poverty, meaning any royalties author Uwem Akpan gets from the book will go to the Order and go towards everything from funding missions, to funding universities, to paying the salaries of Jesuits serving in parishes.
The news of Akpan’s book came via Twitter from National Catholic Reporter, which reports that Akpan’s book is the first short-story collection ever blessed by Oprah as a book club selection. Say You’re One of Them is an “awe-inspiring collection of stories that challenges you to look beyond the headlines and see an Africa full of both joy and despair,” according to Miss O’s Web site. “This is a book you won’t soon forget.”
So, those of you who are taking my 10-books before the New Year challenge, this is one you might want to pick up. And speaking of that challenge, you can find the list of books I’ve read on my way to the 10 in the sidebar to the right of these posts. I’d love to hear about any you read, and if you send them to me with numerical reviews (4 out of 10), I’ll post them in another sidebar as “reader’s picks.”