Review: D. O. Fagunwa’s Forest of a Thousand Daemons: A Hunter’s Saga. Being a Translation of Ogboju Ode Ninu Igbo Irunmale. Trans. by Wole Soyinka.

Pamela J. Olúbùnmi Smith, University of Nebraska at Omaha

This article was first published in the Journal of the African Literature Association.


It is fitting that this review of Forest of a Thousand Daemons: A Hunter’s Saga, Wole Soyinka’s English translation of Ogboju Ode Ninu Igbo Irunmale, Daniel Olorunfemi Fagunwa’s premier Yoruba novel, comes on the heels of the continuing celebration of the 50th anniversary of Fagunwa’s death. While not merely serendipitous, it is also important to note that Soyinka was the consummate keynote speaker at the august gathering of eminent scholars from Nigeria and the diaspora, with Governors Mimiko (Ondo State) and Fayemi (Ekiti State), and indigenous rulers in attendance in Akure, Ondo State, on August 8-10, 2013. To mark the well-choreographed celebration, planned and successfully executed by the Fagunwa Study Group, Chams Publishers PLC of Nigeria made available an ample supply of their newly re-issued editions of Fagunwa’s five Yoruba classics. Book sellers also were on hand as well with Soyinka’s English translations of both Ogboju Ode and Igbo Olodumare, Fagunwa’s first and second novels.