Ghana Must Go takes its title from the Nigerian anti-immigration slogan of the 80s. Selasi’s story follows thenatically. She gets what it is to be a migrant, to drift across continents, to memorise international telephone codes.
It is this, and it’s a story about a fragmented family, the Sais. Kweku the Ghanaian doctor dies in his beautifully constructed house in Accra. This brings together his family from around the globe: his ex-wife Fola, their children, and all their corresponding memories.
Kweku abandoned his family years earlier so the story looks at the consequence of this decision and its fall out on the four siblings. Some of the characters and scenarios are better realised than others. Sadie is the most real- perhaps not coincidentally she’s the least talented. Taiwo and Kewinde are beautiful and mysterious twins. Olu the perfect oldest brother is the most like a paper cut-out.
Selasie’s prose takes a while to get used to. It’s dense and deep. It slips between present day and memory without you noticing, so you have to concentrate. As it unfolds, it is tragically sad in parts but always interesting and bold.
Read: for impetus to call your mum.