In Summary
  • When I was a columnist for Daily Nation for seven years, I learned how to deal with negative reviews; never take them personal.
  • My preference, being old school, is hard copies. I love the smell of books.
  • I love it when I am reading in bed and I doze off and a book slumps on my face, as if to say ‘read on, I am not done with you.’

You probably know her from her witty articles published on Daily Nation newspaper where she was a columnist for seven years.

Ciku Kimani Mwaniki describes herself as mainly a housewife who writes.

Her latest book, Immigrant Cocktail just hit the market. It is a fictitious story based on the lives of Kenyan immigrants living in the United Kingdom. This is her second cocktail book following the Nairobi Cocktail which was published in 2014.

Besides writing, Ciku Kimani is also an aspiring farmer with a muse for what she calls “the village life”, which also inspires her blog, The villager.

What are the three most memorable books from your childhood? Why?

Growing up, I read so many James Hadley Chase, Mills & Boon and Silhouette and Nancy Drew books; it is difficult to pinpoint one particular book that is most memorable.

However, I do remember reading After 4.30 by David Maillu in my early teens and I felt so sinful. All the aforementioned books were read illegally – stolen from my older siblings and read in hiding.

How many books on average do you read in a year?

Before I became a mother, I would read at least five books a month. Now, I am lucky if I finish reading one book in a month. I feel deprived.

Have you ever encountered a book that failed to meet your expectation?

The Fifty Shades written by EL James really disappointed me. I never went past chapter two which for me shows how hype can work on people’s psyche.

Which are your two most treasured books and why? Would you lend them out?

Nick Hornby’s About a Boy. Whenever I feel uninspired, I pull it out of the shelf. I must have read it at least 10 times.

The second one is Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet. It was given to me by a very special friend and the wisdom in it is overwhelming. The two books cannot and must not leave my house.

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