Isele Magazine is excited to announce that our contributor, Uchechukwu Peter Umezurike, has unveiled the cover of his new book, Double Wahala, Double Trouble, which he sold to Griots Lounge Publishing in Canada.

Last month, we published Umezurike’s excellent poem, “there’s more.” You can read it here.

Synopsis of Double Wahala, Double Trouble:

A woman chops off her finger to demonstrate her fidelity to her lover. A mother loses her mind upon discovering that her husband has left her and their only child. An artist seeks to unravel why his neighbour’s face enchants him. A passenger on a bus serves as an emissary of death. Meet some of the characters in Double Wahala, Double Trouble, a collection of eleven stories by the award-winning poet, short story writer, children’s novelist, and literary scholar. In this stunning collection, Umezurike lures the reader into a journey of the absurd and the grisly to show us men and women struggling to live, desire, love, and thrive against the eddy of troubles in their world.

Check out the cover:

Praise for Double Wahala, Double Trouble

“Umezurike’s stories are full of wondrous gifts: a poet’s ear for language, a depth of insight into the souls of memorable characters straining against often implacable fate and other forces, and a propulsive energy that keeps the reader riveted. He’s a delight to discover!” 

  • Okey Ndibe, author of Foreign Gods, Inc. and Arrows of Rain

“With playful, vivid language, these vibrant stories capture the dreamlike—sometimes nightmarish—poetry of the everyday. A captivating read.” 

  • Henrietta Rose-Innes, author of Nineveh  

Double Wahala, Double Trouble does everything a work of fiction should do—shock and impress at the same time. Each story here is beautifully crafted, with characters that will linger in the reader’s mind long after the reading. Umezurike is a writer with a bright future.”

  • Helon Habila, author of Travellers and editor of Granta Book of the African Short Story 

“Each of Umezurike’s stories leads the reader down a comfortable path, until it is abruptly uncomfortable. His consistent skill in twisting plot lines and the driving needs of his characters is rare in short story collections, no matter where they take place. Lost family, betrayals, the idea—and illusion—of home, and grand, fierce gestures of love flow through this book. Reader: let these outstanding stories wash over you.” 

  • Kimmy Beach, author of Nuala: A Fable (shortlisted for the George Bugnet Award for Fiction)

Double Wahala, Double Trouble, is a poetic, gripping, mesmerizing, inventive, and deeply entertaining collection of short stories that cracks open a world that is hidden in the darkest corners of everyday human life. These stories convey Umezurike’s brilliance in building suspense and his great vision in exploring complex moral issues of love, identity, family, human relations, memory, and dislocation. 

  • Niq Mhlongo, author of Paradise in Gaza and editor of Black Tax

“In these compelling stories, Umezurike limns the lives of ordinary people trying to survive whichever way they can. Whether he is writing about a lover who makes a disturbing and unexpected sacrifice to secure her love or a man who loses his life in a case of mistaken identity, Umezurike’s prose shines like something very carefully polished.” 

  • Chika Unigwe, author of Better Never Than Late

Double Wahala tells stories of love, pain, and compassion in a broken world. Under the deft hand of Umezurike, it is clear humanity faces a bleak future unless we address the terrible legacies of colonialism, war, and toxic masculinity. 

  • Peter Midgley, author of let us not think of them as barbarians

At once funny and painfully real, Double Wahala, Double Trouble shows that Umezurike has mastered the art of subtly capturing the nuances of domestic brutality in sparse yet resonant prose. A masterfully delivered collection. 

  • Abubakar Adam Ibrahim, author of Dreams and Assorted Nightmares

  • Bio:

    Uchechukwu Peter Umezurike holds a PhD in English from the University of Alberta. He is a poet, fiction writer, essayist, and literary journalist. An alumnus of the International Writing Program, Iowa, USA, Umezurike is a recipient of the James Patrick Folinsbee Memorial Scholarship in Creative Writing from the University of Alberta and the Norma Epstein Foundation Award for Creative Writing from the University of Toronto, among many honours. He is a co-editor of Wreaths for a Wayfarer, an anthology of poems. His children’s book, Wish Maker, is also forthcoming from Masobe Books in December 2021. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta.