Yinka, Where is Your Huzband?
by Lizzie Damilola Blackburn
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Pub Date 31 Mar 2022 | Archive Date 14 Apr 2023
'A total joy to read – it's hilarious, insightful and so uplifting' Beth O'Leary, author of The Flatshare
THE MOST HOTLY ANTICIPATED DEBUT OF 2022 WITH A HEROINE TO FALL IN LOVE WITH
The Nigerian accent Dictionary
Huzband (pronounced auz-band) noun
1. A male partner in a marriage
E.g. Yinka's younger sister, Kemi, is married to Uche
2. A non-existent man in a non-existent marriage whose whereabouts is often questioned, usually by Nigerian mums and aunties to single British Nigerian women
E.g. So, Yinka. Tell me. Where is your huzband? Ah, ah. You're thirty-one now!
Yinka wants to find love. Her mum wants to find it for her.
She also has too many aunties who frequently pray for her delivery from singledom, a preference for chicken and chips over traditional Nigerian food, and a bum she's sure is far too small as a result. Oh, and the fact that she's a thirty-one-year-old South-Londoner who doesn't believe in sex before marriage is a bit of an obstacle too . . .
When her cousin gets engaged, Yinka commences 'Operation Find A Date for Rachel's Wedding'. Armed with a totally flawless, incredibly specific plan, will Yinka find herself a huzband?
What if the thing she really needs to find is herself?
'Warm and fun and sweet, great on female friendships and extended families’ Marian Keyes
‘Such a warm, funny and relatable book’ Jendella Benson
‘Beautifully observed, warm and deeply human, Yinka is a meditation on family and friendship, on love and self-love. Feel-good, funny and clever, it's got smash-hit written all over it!’ Josie Silver
‘A warm, witty and joyful novel bursting with charm and unforgettable characters, Yinka is a story about friendship, family, romance, and the most important quest of all--loving and accepting yourself’ Lauren Ho
‘Yinka, Where is Your Huzband? is a beautiful, big hearted story about friendship, family, and love. Yinka's charming voice draws you in and her journey toward self-acceptance will make you stay. A fun and relatable read’ Emiko Jean
‘Glorious debut! Read it over two nights and loved it!’ Nikki May
‘Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband? is the spiritual heir to Bridget Jones's Diary, while bringing something entirely fresh and modern to the table. Blackburn kept me cringing, laughing, and tearing up from start to finish with her incredible cast of quirky, lovable characters and especially her almost painfully relatable heroine, Yinka. This is a truly special debut’ Emily Henry
‘A sassy, spirited story’ Kirkus Reviews
‘With an innovative approach, Lizzie Damilola Blackburn deftly immerses us in the life of a loveable Yinka as she straddles two cultures in her search for a 'huzband.' Smart, sophisticated, and fresh this is the 'girl gets herself' type of story I love to read!’ Jayne Allen
‘Spreadsheets, meddling aunties, and makeovers. . . . Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband? is a delightful journey of a British Nigerian woman longing to find love, and to love herself. Reader, you'll root for Yinka the whole way’ Patricia Park
‘Funny, charming, warm. A book that will make your heart smile. A cute and charming tale about family, love and the importance of accepting yourself’ Milly Johnson
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 315 members
I absolutely loved this book. As a young Black British woman, it was so heartwarming to see my culture presented in a romance novel. I found myself relating to Yinka on so many levels. As a Nigerian, her cultural experiences resonated with me, especially the imposter syndrome and desire to connect more with her culture as a second generation Black Brit. As a dark-skinned woman, her journey of self-love and acceptance was so beautiful, my eyes were watering at the end. I loved her character so much and was rooting for her throughout.
Although I felt her struggles due to our shared social and cultural experiences, Yinka’s feelings of insecurity, self doubt and fear are universal and I really liked how Blackburn was able to construct a story of learning to your love yourself that perfectly fit into the social and cultural context of being Black British, while also translating across different backgrounds. No matter who you are, you can connect with Yinka’s anxieties and desire to be loved, and I found her insecurities and fears particularly hit close to home.
I adored all of the background characters and how they were well and truly developed separately to their relationship to Yinka. Nana is the best friend that everyone deserves and was definitely my favourite character in the book.
I loved the ending so much (I was actually cheering when a certain wedding dance song was mentioned because it took me back to my family weddings). The vibes for this book were so good, it was an emotional, funny and ultimately inspiring read that I highly recommend.
I gave 5 out of 5 stars. I loved the writing style, the layout of the story, how we can see the things that Yinka searches for on the internet – which makes the reader more connected to her thought. I loved the issues that were dealt with in the story and the plot. It doesn’t end the way usual romance novels are wrapped up, even though you have an idea what will happen if the story continued beyond its end. Well done Lizzie.
I really enjoyed this book. It was so good to see a book written with real understanding in Nigerian culture, correct wording, and reference to our favourite foods! I think anyone would enjoy this book, regardless of their background, as it opens them up to new cultures with someone relatable, and we’ve probably all got someone in our lives like at least one of the characters. A book about finding yourself and loving yourself
This book is funny, heart warming and is the ultimate lesson for everyone. Essentially learning to love yourself and open lines of communication with everyone around you. The depth of the relationships and dynamics between the characters is really powerful. I absolutely love the modern and contemporary mix of writing using emails, prose, text messages and post it’s.
I loved the authentic journey Yinka takes you on, her inner battle with her culture and her appreciation of modern living and of course chicken cottage. It was also so inspiring for a book to focus on faith and beliefs and not being ashamed of them. Although this book will be loved by everyone that reads it I really hope as many teenagers and young adults read it so they can learn from Yinka and her experience and finding your place in the world without adding the pressures from society. This book will definitely stay with me for a very long time.
Every now and then I know I’m going to love a book just from its title and ‘Yinka, where’s your huzband?’ was definitely one of those. There is so much to love about this book. Yinka, is a flawed, funny, bright and complicated woman, as are the men and women around her, which takes this funny, heartwarming book to another level and I found myself thinking about it, and what it says about attractiveness, race, and family, a lot. And while there is romance at its heart, this is as much a book about family and female friendship which I also loved. Just a wonderful read!
You know there are those books where you creep back to read just one more chapter because the characters are so engaging and the plot is so involving you can’t bear to be parted ? ‘Yinka, Where is your Huzband’ is one of those. Essentially a story of family, friendship, self-knowledge and love, it follows the titular Yinka, who at 31 is single, much to the disappointment of her mother and family. As she embarks on a quest to secure a date for her cousin’s wedding and thereby shut everyone up, she learns how important it is for her to accept herself and live life her own way. Damilola Blackburn handles issues such as colourism and faith with a light hand, infusing the book with so much humour that I found myself guffawing with laughter, much to the alarm of the people around me! A thoroughly entertaining and engaging read and one of my favourites this year. Highly recommended.