If you’ve been following some of our most recent conversations with writers, like in our interview with Uju Asika, you may have come across the title Wahala by Nikki May. Wahala is May’s debut novel and is publication in the US on January 11, 2022.
Wahala describes the story of four women, three Anglo-Nigerian best friends and a “lethally glamorous fourth woman who infiltrates their group.” The book has been compared to other famous books about women and relationships like Sex and the City and My Sister the Serial Killer.
The anticipation around the book is high. This blurb comes from Rosanna Amaka: “Love that ‘Sex and the City’ has finally met moi-moi and plantain with a whole lot of Wahala thrown in.” When Paula Hawkins of Girl on the Train describes a story as “Fast-paced and shocking,” you know there is much to look forward to.
May is a Nigerian-British writer. At twenty, she dropped out of medical school, moved to London, and began a career in advertising, going on to run a successful agency.
After the initial book deal, with UK and Commonwealth rights being sold to Doubleday and North American rights to HarperCollins Custom House, Nikki described her inspiration behind the story.
I always wanted to read a book that had people like me in it. After a long (and loud) lunch with friends at a Nigerian restaurant I wrote the first scene. The characters became flesh and wouldn’t let me go.
Read a blurb from the publisher below.
“Ronke wants happily ever after and 2.2. kids. She’s dating Kayode and wants him to be “the one” (perfect, like her dead father). Her friends think he’s just another in a long line of dodgy Nigerian boyfriends. Boo has everything Ronke wants—a kind husband, gorgeous child. But she’s frustrated, unfulfilled, plagued by guilt, and desperate to remember who she used to be. Simi is the golden one with the perfect lifestyle. No one knows she’s crippled by impostor syndrome and tempted to pack it all in each time her boss mentions her “urban vibe.” Her husband thinks they’re trying for a baby. She’s not. When the high-flying, charismatic Isobel explodes into the group, it seems at first she’s bringing out the best in each woman. (She gets Simi an interview in Shanghai! Goes jogging with Boo!) But the more Isobel intervenes, the more chaos she sows, and Ronke, Simi, and Boo’s close friendship begins to crack. A sharp, modern take on friendship, ambition, culture, and betrayal, Wahala (trouble) is an unforgettable novel from a brilliant new voice.”