Following Bolaji Abdullahi’s Sweet Sixteen, Khadija Abubakar’s The Life Changer is the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Boards’ recommended Use of English text for 2022 and, at most, the next two years. This is a detailed plot summary (chapter by chapter) of the entire text. There is also a quiz at the end of the summary for you to take to see how prepared you are.


Synopsis of the Life Changer

The Life Changer is a novel that mirrors the cons of university life. The book, which is infused with enthusiasm, reaffirms the principles of redemption in today’s youth. The story is narrated by Ummi, the mother of Omar, who has just been accepted to study law at the university. It follows the exploits of a student named Salma and her university roommates as they navigate the maze called University Life.


Plot Summary of the Life Changer


A family of six is introduced to the reader. As they wait for Omar, Bint tells a funny story about her social studies teacher, Mallam Salihu, who acts as if he knows a little bit more about every subject, by frequently asking questions that are not related to the topic at hand.

Bint describes how she handled a personal encounter with him in such a way that Mallam Salihu was taken aback. Ummi is clearly proud of her daughter, particularly Bint’s thoughtful approach to issues, and she participates in the discussion.

This occurs just before Omar arrives and joyfully announces his acceptance to study law at Ahmadu Bello University. As the family gathers to celebrate Omar’s success, Omar brags about his accomplishment, taking pride in overcoming examination challenges among others.

Ummi recognizes her son’s ignorance and proceeds to educate him on the life-changing power of university admission. Ummi then uses the story of Salma to tell her children about how her admission changed her life.





Ummi was admitted to the university twenty years ago and married her husband even before she began her studies. Ummi tells them about the freedom and carefree life of university students, the difficulty in distinguishing between teachers and students with females dressed almost naked, and how some faculties have dress codes. Ummi goes on to describe her encounter with Salma, a sophisticated young lady, and coursemate.

Salma arrives for registration much later than everyone else, but she expresses discomfort and irritation about the delay. A young man in the queue interrogates Salma, and he constantly engages her in a discussion, but Salma continues to criticize the lecturers.

Salma not only draws parallels between lecturers and police officers as bribable personalities, but she also boasts about her ability to win the lecturer’s favor with as little as two or three thousand naira. The young man Salma has been conversing with is the lecturer in charge of the registration procedure, unknown to Salma and to the surprise of everyone in the queue.

Ummi is directed to the HOD’s office after completing her departmental registration. The HOD can be seen exchanging endearing pleasantries with Ummi, which she finds both uncomfortable and inappropriate. Ummi believes the HOD is making a move on her.

She manages this until she is given her matriculation number and leaves the office with irritation. When Ummi returns home, she tells her husband about her experience at the HOD’s office, but she is astounded to learn of the rapport between her husband and Dr Sam John.




Talle, the ‘quiet one,’ is the next story Ummi tells. Talle was born after many years of child futility, and his birth resulted in his mother’s death. He grows up with a quiet personality, becoming even more so after the deaths of his father and stepmother; thus, ‘the quiet one’ was an apt description.

Talle is regarded as a good person by the villagers and is incapable of causing harm. Talle, on the other hand, needed money at some point and confided in Zaki, who proposed the idea of kidnapping a boy and demanding a ransom. The plan is carried out by the duo, and Talle confines the boy in his home. Talle goes to the market to get his groceries, but his usual list of food items has doubled.

The market woman notices the change in his grocery request and reports the problem to the District head. While Talle is being questioned by the District head, police storm the palace and arrest Talle as a suspect in kidnapping and extortion. Talle and Zaki are eventually sentenced to a number of years in prison.




In this chapter, Salma goes to Dr. Dabo, the level coordinator, to sign her forms. Dr. Dabo, unfortunately, loses touch with his many years of discipline and makes advances toward Salma. Salma dismisses his attempt and insults him further before leaving the office. The man is left in a state of regret, and he remorsefully prays to be vindicated by the consequences of his actions.

Salma enters a room with three other girls. Salma dislikes the sight of her roommates at first, but they eventually grow fond of each other and form a kind of sisterhood.

On a fateful evening, two men, Habib and his driver, Labaran, offer Salma a ride in a Mercedes Benz. She slips in knowing it’s risky, but plans to decline Habib’s request to date her. To Salma, her way of raising her standards and gaining respect from the entire university is to turn down a man who rides a Benz.




Salma gives Habib Tomiwa’s mobile line instead, and unknowingly to Habib, he calls Tomiwa to go out on a date with him. Tomiwa is Salma’s roommate, and curious about Habib, she decides to go out on a blind date but eventually discloses the switch in mobile lines. Habib likes her still and shops for her and her roommates. He also gives Tomiwa some money for herself and her roomies.

She is elated and her roommates shared in this happiness. At first, Salma agitates against Tomiwa’s approval of Habib and accuses her of being a chameleon. Ada and Ngozi intervene but the issue escalates. They soon come to a state of tranquillity as soon as someone knocks at the door.

They do not want to have to share their lots with other neighbours. Meanwhile, Salma and her roommates continue to excel in their separate departments and prepare for General studies papers.



Moral philosophy is a difficult subject for Salma. She, on the other hand, prepares by going over previous questions and answering them off the top of her head. Unfortunately, Salma is unable to answer any of the questions during the examination because none of the topics for which she has spent the entire night preparing have been released. She decides to engage in examination malpractice. Kola writes down the answers to some of the questions as she copies them into her answer booklet. Unfortunately, she is apprehended by a female lecturer. Salma is forced to complete the Examination Malpractice (EMAL) form and is led to the HOD’s office. He forwards her case to the Exams and Ethics committee for further consideration. Salma and Kola are then expelled.



Salma approaches Habib for assistance in influencing the committee through his position as a politician. Habib suggests involving Dr. Debo, but due to her previous interactions with the lecturer, she declines and suggests bribing instead. Habib offers Salma money to bribe the chairman of the Examination and Ethics Committee (EMEC), but she must repay in kind in return. Salma is hesitant to accept this offer because of her affair with Labaran, and she believes that having an affair with her friend’s man is unethical. Salma quickly agrees to his request, but she unintentionally gives the money to Dr. Kabir, who claims to be the chairman of the EMEC. She quickly realizes she has been duped by Dr. Kabir, who is neither the chairman nor a member of the Committee. She is disheartened and breaks down.



This chapter reveals Mohammed Kabir’s true identity as a laboratory technologist employed by the University. Doctor has been his nickname since secondary school, and he is always referred to as Dr. Kabir.

Labaran discovers that the man has taken advantage of Salma and informs Habib, recommending that Zaki be contacted to handle the situation. Habib is hesitant to involve Zaki because of his failure in the first mission, which was to kidnap Alhaji Adamu’s son. Habib accepts Labaran’s suggestion and contacts Zaki to follow Kabir.

Kabir has been spotted at a gambling establishment. Kabir wins the game at the gambling establishment and flees to avoid losing everything. Unfortunately, he is being pursued by thugs on a mission to recover Kabir’s winnings.

Zaki approaches Kabir as he is being attacked by the thugs. As the thugs flee, Zaki strikes them and seizes control of the situation. He then focuses on Kabir, collects the money, and abandons him bruised.

Ummi also tells her children about Salma’s moral transformation. Salma becomes more serious and decent after her father’s death, and Ummi accepts Salma as a friend as a result of her seriousness.



Ummi also discusses Salim’s resentful relationship with smartphones. Salim tells Lawal about a girl he met through social media. Salim visits Natasha according to her preferences after several exchanges of pictures, chats, and affection. Unaware that he is being duped by Natasha, he embarks on a journey to see her late at night.

Salim is fascinated by her beauty as she joins him in the front seat of his SUV upon his arrival. He is eventually ambushed by gunmen who attempt to rob him of his belongings. Fortunately for him, he avoids this only to become involved with another woman he meets on social media.

This time, he begs Lawal to accompany him in order to avoid a similar occurrence. Lawal declines. Salim leaves disappointed, only to meet an ugly girl instead.

As they await daddy’s arrival, the children are seen expressing their admiration for all of the stories relayed to them by Ummi.


About the Author

Khadija Abubakar Jalli holds a B.Sc (Ed) Mathematics degree. She is an entrepreneur and CEO of She’s Boutique Afrique. The Life Changer is Khadija Abubakar Jalli’s first book, which she dedicated to her 5 children; Zahra, Najwa, Basma, Sodiq, and Farha. She appears to be one of the female voices making a comeback on the African literary scene.






About The Author

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