So I sat down today to read this book by a relatively new author who submitted her first book to us at Okada Books. It shot up to number 4 on our bestseller list in less than 3 weeks*, so I was curious to read it myself. ‘The JJC handbook’ as far as titles go, was catchy but what really caught my eye was the book cover art. It could only have been dreamed up by a true Nigerian. The over sized winter coat, the green passport and Ghana-must-go bag at what looked like Heathrow Airport (terminal 5 I guess)…it brought a smile to my face.
The book promises to be a chest of wisdom for anyone travelling out of Nigeria to the UK. The contents are delivered in 3 sections, the international student, the Migrant worker and general comments. I was eager to see what the book had in store at this point; I was not disappointed.
It is a small book and I read it cover to cover in one sitting but what it lacks in length it makes up for in humour and wise information. She covers everything from choosing the right course to getting a job after your studies or if you are already working, there are tips on how to get ahead in your career.
She is very funny, this Valerie and you can almost hear a girly voice with a Nigerian accent telling you ‘it is OK for you to still like drinking Garri and eating Bole after your Masters degree’ in a sarcastic sort of way. When she wrote about her mother saying to her, ‘they don’t have 10 heads’ when referring to classmates who might be better at academic pursuits, I fondly thought of my mum as well. Her writing is simple and easy and you feel relaxed thinking, she knows what she is saying. That comforting feeling carries throughout the book and the information comes across as very well-meaning and useful. I found myself laughing out loud at some points and began wondering what an audio book will sound like.
At the end, I feel like I have had a long talk with my big sister who has told me about my life and expectations. You get the feeling that you will let her down if I don’t come back from ‘Obodo Oyibo’ a massive success. All in all, I feel like I should have read this book a few years ago before my first disastrous trip to the UK; where I jumped on a tube train heading the wrong way and got fined by the traffic enforcement for not having a ticket!
Will I read this book again? Maybe. It’s small enough to read over and over and I found it easy enough to read. Would I recommend it to anyone? Most definitely!
‘The JJC handbook- adapting to the UK with ease’ is Valerie Kerri’s first book, She lives in London and is an entrepreneur and writer. The book will be officially launched in the UK on the 26th of August, 2016.
Author website: www.kerriconsulting.com
*Bestseller list with 74 downloads via the Okada books app on the 4th of July, 2016.