While reading is a solitary exercise, books foster connection to the people and places in their stories, as well as between readers. African book clubs have proliferated of late, affording a bridge for diasporans across the globe, as well as a form of community during the isolation of the pandemic.
The Happy Noisemaker is an online book club based in Nigeria and is run by 28-year-old screenwriter, podcaster and blogger Jola Ayeye. An offshoot of the blog she curates, Ayeye started the discussion group last November, using monthly Zoom meets to provide a platform that celebrates literature by women or African writers.
Based in Cape Town, 29-year-old Tumi Sebopa works in marketing. Like Ayeye she brings readers together through a monthly literary meet. She established Inception Book Club (IBC) over four years ago to create a space for women to discuss everything from literature to career prospects.