I am honoured that Milan asked me to do this for the second time and is accepting deliverance in reverse. I have known the author for 10 years since our first meeting in a Journalism class in 2008; the math is only relevant to those who believe in calculus.
The book is a child I first met on Facebook, as stated by the author. In the 21st century it is not uncommon for authors to use the internet as a way to get real time and usually fast paced feedback from readers. We hope this is the first in a string of internet generated and shared short stories.
The title of this short story, The Katayi Myth not only defines the entire story but also offers you a glimpse into the mind of the writer, and his view on culture albeit the fictionalisation. It is a composition of ideas via thoughts via fingers translated into words that are explanatory on paper (or computer).
The composition of the wording leans to the writer’s actual background and experience of life and poetry writing in more ordinary word but still offers a kaleidoscope of views , both his and yours.
The title itself expresses a rich cultural background embedded with puns into the main characters. It portrays different levels of idea perception and interpretation.
“Tom looked on; fuming like a Zambian man when someone insults his mother”
In any intriguing story, the reader asks for word pictures, haunting phrases that are relatable yet subliminal. And Milan has uniquely pounced on that, going a little further than is habitually expected.
This story is for readers with an active sense of imagination, patience, and mostly low blood pressure (BP). The fast pace of the story is crafted in your head while you read, a rare feet for such a young writer to achieve.
“He zipped up the case, grabbed it, and motioned for her to follow him out.”
The Katayi Myth will take you to places of the human mind that you will think are incomprehensible on any planet. Set like an M Knight Sharmalan movie, the story is told in the first-person by each character unlike the older way narrative by one overseer. This way, you feel like you are part of the story.
The fact that it was published first on the internet makes it fast paced, immediate, and powerful, with playful hues of humour that are both sarcastic and sad but realistically too close to home. You have a predestined awareness of what will happen, but you have no idea what it is, except that feeling of déjà vu. Of course it is really just the writer playing with your mind because he is so familiar with his language but distinct in his style. His mind creates a backdrop for the reader to selflessly ease into the story while at the same time exercising their knowledge of Zambian tradition.
Therefore, with Katayi Myth the sense of sight takes over engaging your imagination. Norms and dreams are tested, in an emotionally charged arsenal of love and words. It gives you the audacity to touch that dream with your fingertips, page after page after page after page…
That’s all she wrote 🙂
Martha Muzabula Kundwe