• Wole Soyinka was raised in a compound in a town called Ake. The narrative starts when he is three.
• Wole's young life is a blend of tribal spiritual beliefs and pagan beliefs.
• Wole recounts a legend in which his mother, Wild Christian, and Uncle Sanya are attacked by a spirit creature called a ghommid.
• In another legend, Sanya is possessed by a spirit, and the family gives a great feast to the spirit world so the spirit leaves Sanya's body.
• The master of Wole's compound is a large, fierce man named Canon. Wole's father, Essay, runs the local grammar school.
• Wole counts among his extended family Mr. and Mrs. B, whose daughter Bukola is said to be a spirit child halfway between the dead and the living.
Chapters 2 and 3
• Wole becomes jealous of his older sister going to school, and one day simply follows her...
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