About Petra

Petra Okeke-Bestman grew up in Lagos, Nigeria, in a family of storytellers. Every night when she was little, her father told her folktales from his childhood, a tradition handed down from his parents and their parents before them. Spellbound, Petra listened to stories about wisewomen and warriors, princesses and villains, and couldn’t wait to become herself a storyteller.

Petra wrote her first stories when she was six, weaving together characters from her father’s tales and her vivid imagination. Believing that books were written with very sharp pencils, as a six-year-old she spent hours painstakingly sharpening her own pencils and then imitating the style of printed books as she wrote down her own stories.

Petra now crafts fiction for adults and children, and her goals are to entertain and inspire positively, anyone who reads her books. She creates and shares stories that challenge detrimental socio-cultural beliefs and practices, stories that encourage reflection.

With a Masters degree in social work, Petra has managed programs to help immigrant families adapt to life in Canada, and low-income single parents become self-sufficient.

Petra lives in Calgary, Canada. In her spare time, she is a keen photographer, capturing the vibrant lake sunsets and majestic forests of her Canadian home.

Culinary spices are Petra’s passion, from guinea pepper and cubeb to tamarind and cloves. She collects and blends them, savoring their scents and flavors, filling her kitchen with the uplifting aromas of the world.