We're back in the KBOO studios after three long years doing the show remotely via Zoom. And I'm so happy our first guest is Kesha Ajọsẹ-Fisher, author of the story collection No God Like the Mother, from Portland’s Forest Avenue Press.
Kesha was born in Chicago, raised in Lagos, Nigeria, and returned to the U.S with her family in the early nineties. She’s an Oregon Literary Fellow and her work has appeared in The Alchemy, The Phoenix, and The Buckman Journal. Kesha’s story “Mr. Uncle’s Favor” was included in the 2021 anthology Dispatches from Anarres: Tales in Tribute to Ursula K. Le Guin.
The story behind No God Like the Mother almost reads like fiction. The book was originally self-published in 2019 through Inkwater Press, and won the prestigious Oregon Book Awards' Ken Kesey Prize for Fiction the next year. Inkwater went out of business during the Covid pandemic and the book went out of print. It was recently re-published in a new edition by Laura Stanfill and Forest Avenue Press, and is now widely available wherever good books are sold.
Author Omar El Akkad, who won the 2022 Ken Kesey Prize, calls No God Like the Mother, “the sort of story collection that comes along very rarely--honest, precise, and meticulous in its emotional and physical detail... Kesha Ajọsẹ-Fisher is a brilliant new talent and No God Like the Mother the beginning of an equally brilliant literary career."