"With unerring insight into the lives of young Africans, carefully and wonderfully, Trudie Sturgess tells a moving story of young rape victims. Rape is a topic that many African don't perceive as a violent act. They don't think it's wrong. Sensitivities so strong this novel will outrun the grave."
Laurie Gordon, Eye for talent, editor.
Miss Sturgess writes so gracefully and with such restraint that all graphic sexual acts leap off the pages with an impact that resonate in one's mind long after the last page of her book is read...
[ She] has captured her characters fears, emotions and complexity in what is sure to became an international significance."
Joyce Osei-Owusu, Publisher, Voice of Ghanaians Canada
"When I finished Trudie Sturgess's novel about, ' The Sons of Africa, my fist response was this is a story that Ghallywood needs!Miss Sturgess didn't hold back in her condemnation of the sexual exploitations of African girl's by African men. I sat down and I wept. "
Jessica Williams, Ghallywood Actress
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.65(d)|
Read an Excerpt
The Sons of Africa
By Trudie-Pearl Sturgess
AuthorHouse LLCCopyright © 2014 Trudie-Pearl Sturgess
All rights reserved.
As usual, Waverley is late leaving the library Friday night. She is invited to the opening of a new African restaurant in downtown Burlington at the corner of Brant and Fairview, The Golden Plate Restaurant. She tosses her books into the back seat of her car and drives to the highway with Nikkie Minaj rapping about men on the car stereo.
The Queen Elizabeth Way highway, locally known as the QEW, is moving quickly tonight. There are no collisions on the highway and the volume of traffic is diminished compared to the usual rush-hour conditions. Waverley speeds along the highway, exits at Walker's Line, and follows the signs to Brant Street. Up ahead, she sees the flashing lights in front of the restaurant and the line-up of people at the door.
Without any real hope of finding a parking spot in front of the restaurant, Waverley looks anyway. There isn't one, but then, surprisingly, a vehicle backs out and Waverley grins at her luck. She puts on her indicator light, and as she looks behind herself to check her blind spot, a white BMW pulls into the space.
The driver gets out of the car. Laughing, he shouts to Waverley that she should learn to drive faster. Waverley is shocked by the man's attitude, but she doesn't want to get into a fight over a parking spot with a thug in a dark parking lot. She is about to drive away, when the passenger in the BMW steps in front of her vehicle, talking on his cell phone.
The man wears a dark suit. His eyes briefly meet Waverley's and he smiles warmly at her. As Waverley drives away, she notices that the man on the cell phone is watching her. Deciding to try the staff parking area behind the restaurant, Waverley drives behind the building and parks her car next to the owner's vehicle.
Waverley and Abigail have been friends a long time. In fact, Abigail is arguing with her ex-husband, Dante, at the back door of the restaurant. She sees Waverley getting out of her car and stops yelling at Dante long enough to shout a greeting. Both of them hug Waverley and welcome her to the new restaurant. "You made it! Oh girl, thank you for coming!" Abigail hugs Waverley again.
"Hey! Free food and drinks? I wouldn't miss it for the world!" Waverley grins. "I couldn't find a spot at the front, so I hope you don't mind me parking back here." Abigail waves her hand dismissively to say it is okay. Together, they enter the fully packed restaurant. Abigail's younger brother is on the stage telling inappropriate jokes. "This is impressive!" exclaims Waverley.
Abigail smiles proudly and they sit for a moment with Meagan, whose husband has called to say he will not be able to make it due to his work load. Moments later, the two men who took Waverley's parking spot join them at the table. The driver is holding a glass of wine in his left hand. Abigail stands up and hugs him. The man tries to kiss Meagan's cheek, but she protests. "If you try to put that filthy mouth of yours on me, I will bitch-slap your thug ass! Pull up your damned pants, Jon!" Meagan sneers at him.
Laughing good-naturedly, Jon replies, "I love you, too, Meagan. You're a true African babe with that nasty mouth of yours."
Meagan ignores him and turns her attention to Edwin who is staring at Waverley with a love-struck expression. Of course, everyone at the table notices, except Waverley. "Babe? Have we met before?" Jon asks Waverley.
Waverley ignores Jon. Meagan and Abigail shake their heads in disbelief. Meagan introduces Edwin to Waverley. "Why won't you introduce me?" whines Jon.
"We don't like little boys who pretend to be men. Hakeem and Pam are by the bar. Go play with them. We're going to sandwich dance with your sexy brother," says Meagan, sounding up-tight.
"Oh, you naughty girls! I would love to sandwich dance with you three fine ladies. My brother is too disciplined for the hot, nasty and kinky stuff. Ladies? Lead the way for Daddy!" exclaims Jon with arrogant charm.
Meagan replies by slapping him with her purse. "Get lost, Jon!" Giggling, the girls go out on the dance floor with Edwin. They have fun with Edwin until a slow song comes on the sound system. It is an old song by Lionel Ritchie, "The only one". Abigail and Meagan leave the dance floor. Edwin and Waverley are dancing and talking. At the bar, Meagan and Abigail high-five each other for a job well done. "Girl, we should open a dating agency, we're so good!" Meagan gushes.
"You know? Waverley's Dad and Edwin's Mum have wanted to get the two of them together for a long time, but they didn't know how. This is awesome!" says Abigail.
"Shhhhh! They're coming! Act cool. We don't want them to know it's a set up," says Meagan to Abigail. They all sit down to an enjoyable meal. At closing time, Abbey excuses herself from the table to help Pam clean up. Meagan follows her, leaving Waverley at the table with Edwin.
"We'll need to plan something else," observes Pam, "if we're going to get those two out on a real date."
"How do you mean?" asks Abbey. Meagan, too, is wondering what Pam means.
"Well ... since Edwin and Waverley live in Toronto, we should try and get them to drive home in the same car," suggests Pam.
"How do we do that?" asks Abbey.
"I have been pumping Jon for information on Edwin. Apparently, he is just as weird as Waverley. He came here tonight with Jon in the same car. What if Meagan and I invite Jon to come home with us?"
"Ew! Hell no! I am a married woman! I don't want that boy anywhere near you, Pamela, and certainly not alone in our home! Ew! ... Next plan!"
"No! Really, this will work. Jon will ditch Edwin and come home with us. We can ditch Jon once Abbey calls us to say that Waverley and Edwin are returning to Toronto together." Pamela feels confident her plan will work.
Abbey and Meagan are pensive. "Hmmmm ... not a bad idea. Let's do it, now, before one of them decides to leave. Otherwise, we'd be really screwed," Meagan says. It all plays out pretty much as Pam suggests. Jon tells his brother to find a ride back since he's taking off now. "Jon, you can't leave me here!" objects Edwin, but Jon is happily holding Meagan and Pamela's hands and already heading for the front door. Edwin sighs and closes his eyes. Waverley gets up from the table.
"Thanks again, Abbey, for inviting me. I've had a great time tonight," says Waverley.
"You're welcome! Can you wait a sec? I've got some take-out for you. Why does Edwin look so down?" asks Abbey innocently.
"My brother just took off with Meagan and her sister. Neo will probably give Jon hell when he drops the girls at home. That will teach him a good lesson for leaving me." Edwin cheers up at the thought of what will happen to Jon.
"Not to worry! My girl, Waverley, will take you home. She lives in Toronto. I'll be right back!" Abbey winks at Waverley before heading to the kitchen to package the food.
"Huh?" says Waverley.
"Um ... Do you mind? Or, you could drop me at a Go-train station. That would do nicely. Please? I'd be ever so grateful," says Edwin endearingly. Then after a pause, he adds, "Actually, maybe it's not such a good idea. It's very late. I'll just take a taxi to my mother's house and spend the weekend with her. She's not too far from here."
"It's okay. I can drop you at your mother's, or anywhere else. I am spending the weekend with my dad," says Waverley.
"Thank you!" says Edwin, grinning happily.
Abbey walks them to Waverley's car and hands her friend the take-out food. Edwin settles into the front seat. "Have your parents lived here long?" he asks, fastening his seat belt.
"My father has lived here since I was born."
"What about your mother? Brothers? Sisters?" enquires Edwin.
"My mom's deceased. And there are no siblings. I am an only child."
Edwin reaches for her hand and says that he is sorry. Waverley doesn't push his hand away. She drives into a Tim Horton's. Edwin beams. "I'd like a coffee too, if it's not too much trouble."
"It's no trouble. Actually, you made my night fun. I enjoyed your company," says Waverley.
"Really? You're not just saying that to be polite, are you?" asks Edwin.
"Yes, I did. I am not very sociable as Abigail will tell you. I didn't want to come out here tonight. I have so much to do for my exams."
"Can we go inside instead of through the drive-thru window?" asks Edwin. Waverley thinks that is a good idea. She parks the car and they go inside the store, buy their coffee and sit down. They talk and talk, and laugh. They don't notice they've been there so long that it is almost morning. By the time they leave the Tim Horton's, Edwin has gathered his courage to ask Waverley out on a real date. She agrees. When she drops him off at his mother's, Edwin stands in the drive way and watches Waverley's car disappear on the horizon.CHAPTER 2
After that initial meeting at Abigail's restaurant opening, Edwin and Waverley were inseparable. They spent every free moment together. Seven months later, they moved into a small one-bedroom condo in downtown Toronto. A year later they married and relocated to the quiet countryside of Grimsby on the Niagara escarpment so they could be closer to their parents.
Not long after, Waverley became pregnant. Three and a half months into the pregnancy, she suffered a miscarriage. Both Edwin and Waverley were devastated. Edwin did everything he could to help his wife through the painful loss. Waverly buried herself in her internship to cope, but nine months later she suffered another miscarriage. Edwin was as supportive as ever, but both of them were losing hope of ever having a family.
Edwin raises the draft blueprint in the air and scans it. He places it on the drafting board and frowns at it. Sighing deeply, he rubs his forehead vigorously. It's just his instinct, but something very important is missing from the design and he cannot put his finger on it. The clock on the wall reads seven forty-five. Edwin jumps out of his chair, saying to himself, "Damn it! Waverley is going to kill me!" He rolls up the draft blueprint and slips it inside a tube. Shrugging into his coat, Edwin leaves his office. On his way out, he sees his project manager and calls out to him. "Good! You're still here, Russell!" Edwin gives the tube to Russell. "This should get us the contract for the new condominiums on Ridge Hills."
Russell laughs, "Good job, Edwin!"
Together, the two men walk down the hall toward the elevator.
The QEW to Niagara Falls is not very busy. In no time at all, Edwin is exiting onto Casablanca Boulevard. He stops at the Esso gas station to fill up his gas tank. Edwin goes into the store to pay and sees a bunch of flowers. As he decides which bunch to buy, the middle-aged Asian man behind the counter shouts at Edwin, "Are you going to buy the damn flowers or not? There is another car behind you waiting to fill up, man!"
Edwin thinks, "How rude!"
Edwin takes two bunches of flowers and goes to the counter. He pays for the flowers and the gas. Accidentally, he leaves one bunch behind as he leaves the store. The Asian man shouts again, "Hey, mister! You left your flowers behind!"
In a temper, Edwin returns to the counter and grabs the flowers.
"Hey! You better not be drunk! I am going to call the cops and tell them that you look disoriented. I think you're intoxicated. It's people like you that drive crazy on the QEW and kill innocent people."
Disgruntled, Edwin takes the flowers and leaves the store. A few minutes later, he pulls into his garage. Waverley's car is parked in the driveway. As he gets out of his car, a taxi pulls into the driveway. Frowning, Edwin takes the spare keys from the garage wall and opens his wife's car. He moves it into the garage next to his own vehicle and then pushes the button on the garage door transponder to close the garage door.
Waverley steps out of the taxi with her arms loaded down with grocery bags. Edwin runs to help and takes the bags indoors. "Hello, sweetie!" exclaims Waverley. "I hope you're not hungry? There wasn't much in the house, so I went for some groceries."
Edwin kisses Waverley on the cheek. "No, baby, I've just arrived. I meant to take you out to dinner to celebrate you passing your bar exams, remember?"
Waverley puts her arms around him as they walk to the door. She tells him that they will go out to dinner when she has a job. They both laugh as Waverley opens the house door. Together they unpack the groceries and prepare their supper. Waverley puts pasta into hot boiling water and begins to cut onions. She tells Edwin to pour a glass of orange juice for her. Edwin laughs and shares with his wife the story about the guy at the gas station.
Quite unexpectedly Waverley defends the man's rudeness. "I don't blame him one bit. He is going through a really difficult time right now," she says.
"How do you know the man?" Edwin asks.
"He is my first client!" Waverley replies with a smile.
Edwin laughs mockingly. "If that mean old man is your client, you're not going to win any cases or get any more clients in the future!"
Waverley pauses in her preparation of the salad. "Edwin! I am disappointed in you!"
"Baby, you always tell me that I'm a wimp, but I tell you ... today, I almost punched his lights out. He was so rude to everyone who came into that gas station this evening. He accused me of being drunk! In fact, I made a mental note to stop by the gas station the next time I'm there and ask for the owner's number so I can complain about that mean old man."
"Edwin Boateng! That mean old man lost his wife and small child on the Toronto-bound QEW three days ago because of a drunk driver," Waverley explains.
"Well, I don't think he should take it out on his customers. Are you doing personal injury law now?" Edwin inquires.
Waverley smiles proudly. She tells Edwin that until she finds a law firm that suits her, she is going to be an ambulance chaser. They sit down in the dining room and eat. "Mmmm ... I love your minestrone meatballs with pasta," Edwin compliments his wife. He wipes his mouth with the napkin and leans across the table to kiss her. She puts more pasta on his plate and sprinkles some more parmesan cheese on it. Edwin notices that she is playing with her food and not eating. "Are you alright?"
Waverley smiles, "I forgot to mention it, but I felt the baby kick this afternoon, Edwin."
Edwin beams proudly, "Really? Is he kicking now?"
Waverley nods her head and takes Edwin's hand and places it on her stomach. He waits a moment and then he feels the kick. "Wow! He is going to play football for Ashante Kotoko!" Edwin declares.
Waverley smiles and their eyes meet. They are both thinking the same things. Edwin feels like crying even though he has told himself that he will not cry. The situation is beginning to look remarkably like the past three pregnancies. Five months into the pregnancy, Waverley would become very tired and suddenly suffer a miscarriage. This is the child they have been anxiously awaiting. He knows it. He can feel it. Waverley sighs and complains that she feels tired and not really hungry. Edwin's heart skips a beat. He says a silent prayer to God, pleading for the health of his wife and the unborn child. He rubs her belly. The baby is still kicking. He gasps. "Did you have a really big lunch? Or did you have a snack when you came home tonight?" Edwin asks Waverley.
"No. I've been tired and sleeping a lot the past few days. I don't know why."
Edwin is concerned. He continues to rub her back. Then, he asks her to excuse him for a moment. When he returns, Edwin picks up Waverley in his arms. She protests that they should not leave the kitchen in a mess, but he promises to clean it up later as he carries Waverley into the ensuite bathroom. The tub is full of bubble bath. Waverley smiles. "You always know exactly what I need. You're so good to me."
"Well, since you wouldn't let me take you out, I am going to give you a bath and feed you in bed!"
"Mmmm ... It sounds good. Do I get a massage too?"
Edwin has helped Waverley out of all of her clothes and helped her into the tub. He tells her she can have her heart's desire, and he is true to his word. Afterward, Waverley felt so relaxed she was able to eat a little bit before falling asleep.
The next morning, Waverley awakens early and is at her usual early-morning routine of reading a stack of files in her home office. Meanwhile, Edwin is still sleeping. He rolls over and reaches for his wife, but she is not in bed by his side. He opens his eyes and glances at the bed-side clock. It reads 4:30 a.m. Suddenly, he is anxious for his wife. Panting, he rushes into the bathroom, but she is not there. He grabs his bathrobe from the foot of the bed and slips it on.
Excerpted from The Sons of Africa by Trudie-Pearl Sturgess. Copyright © 2014 Trudie-Pearl Sturgess. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse LLC.
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