As a bookstagrammer, I can attest to the fact that our community is made of 90% ladies. Reading is generally perceived to be a feminine hobby and as such, it comes as no surprise that more ladies are inclined to create an account dedicated to books. However, there are a few gentlemen whose love for reading has made them venture into these bookstagram streets. One of them is Wesley. Armed by his humor and his intelligence, he makes his bokstagram account one that is interesting to keep up with.
I asked Wesley three questions to learn more about him and his love for books and this is what he had to say:
1.You are one of the very few male bookstagrammers we have on these Kenyan streets. What prompted you to start a bookstagram account and how has the journey been?
I have been active on Instagram from 2014 to date, but I joined bookstagram in 2018. I think my inspiration was and still is a bookstagramer known as @bookmateraility. I really loved what she did on her page. The aesthetics drove me into finally taking my reading to a notch higher- posting my books on Instagram! As a male it hasn’t been that easy doing it. I am one open minded fella and at times I want to take certain book covers with certain props (giggles) but then I stop and wonder, it will be emasculating, no? However, I really love the bookstagram experience as through this I have made new friends and a network of readers.
2. You recently started a booktube channel (congratulations!). What do you aim to achieve with this channel?
Well to be honest, I have had this idea since January last year. I remember I bought the phone I currently have for that purpose, but then I recorded a video and I just couldn’t get the oomph. That’s how I killed the idea. Then recently I felt the urge to finally get out there and talk about books not only on Instagram but on YouTube too.
Other than doing book reviews and having fun, my aim is to show men out there, Kenyan men to be precise, that reading is not a feminine hobby and it shouldn’t be seen as emasculating.
3. They say the reading culture in Kenya is dead. Some say it is not. What is your opinion on this?
I wouldn’t say the reading culture is dead nor would I say its alive. See over the past years I’ve witnessed a certain growth in the number of bookstagrammers and friends who read books. I believe its slowing picking up and soon we will see more readers. The only problem is that almost 90% of the readers in Kenya are either Wattpad users and PDF readers. This shouldn’t be the case though; books were meant to be flipped not swiped (giggles). So my opinion is; the reading culture in Kenya is blossoming still.
Wesley is hilarious and kind hearted. Every time I have a conversation with him, I am happy. He also posts amazing contents and reviews that challenges my thinking and point of view. From his page I have curated a list of books I would like to read, hopefully this year. Check out his bookstagram page as well as his booktube channel for some amazing book content.