Chigozie Obioma

Award-winning Novelist

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  • An Evening with Chigozie Obioma

Biography

“In his exploration of the mysterious and the murderous, of the terrors that can take hold of the human mind, of the colors of life in Africa, with its vibrant fabrics and its trees laden with fruit, and most of all in his ability to create dramatic tension in this most human of African stories, Chigozie Obioma truly is the heir to ­Chinua Achebe.” –New York Times

“Chigozie Obioma is that rare thing: an original. His world is a mix of the real and the folkloric, and his writing sounds like no one else’s.” –Wall Street Journal

“Frank and lyrical.” –The New Yorker

Chigozie Obioma was born in Akure, Nigeria. He is the author of the novel The Fishermen (Little, Brown and Company, 2015), winner of the 2016 Los Angeles Times Book Prize (The Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction), the 2016 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work, the 2015 FT/Oppenheimer Emerging Voices Award for Fiction, and was shortlisted for the 2015 Man Booker Prize. He is also the author of An Orchestra of Minorities (Little, Brown and Company, 2019), which was also a finalist for the Man Booker Prize. Together, his novels have been translated into more than 29 languages.

The Fishermen, which was adapted into an award-winning stage play by Gbolahan Obisesan that played in the UK and South Africa between 2018-2019, is the Cain and Abel-esque story of a childhood in Nigeria, in the small town of Akure. About the debut, Michael Schaub said, “Engrossing. Obioma’s language is rich and hypnotic, and nearly every page is filled with an unexpected and perfectly rendered description. This is a dark and beautiful book by a writer with seemingly endless promise.” Dazzling and viscerally powerful, The Fishermen is an essential novel about Africa, seen through the prism of one family’s destiny.

Obioma was named one of Foreign Policy’s 100 Leading Global Thinkers of 2015. He is the James E. Ryan Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and divides his time between the US and Nigeria.

Short Bio

Chigozie Obioma was born in Akure, Nigeria. His two novels, The Fishermen (2015) and An Orchestra of Minorities (2019) were shortlisted for The Booker Prize. His novels have been translated into more than 29 languages. They have won awards including the inaugural FT/Oppenheimer Award for Fiction, the NAACP Image Award, the Internationaler Literaturpreis, and the LA Times Book Prize, and been nominated for many others. The Fishermen was adapted into an award-winning stage play by Gbolahan Obisesan that played in the UK and South Africa between 2018-2019. He was named one of Foreign Policy’s 100 Leading Global Thinkers of 2015. He is the James E. Ryan Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and divides his time between the US and Nigeria.

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