Welcome to the Africa Book Club online bookstore – your one-stop shop for the best contemporary African literature. Browse the store to discover what’s new. From children’s books to fiction and non-fiction, the store has something for everyone. If you are looking for a specific book and can’t find in the store, please let us know. You can contact us via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fifteen-year-old Kambili's world is circumscribed by the high walls and frangipani trees of her family compound. Her wealthy Catholic father, under whose shadow Kambili lives, while generous and politically active in the community, is repressive and fanatically religious at home. When Nigeria begins to fall apart under a military coup, Kambili's father sends her and her brother away to stay with their aunt, a University professor, whose house is noisy and full of laughter. There, Kambili and her brother discover a life and love beyond the confines of their father's authority. The visit will lift the silence from their world and, in time, give rise to devotion and defiance that reveal themselves in profound and unexpected ways. This is a book about the promise of freedom; about the blurred lines between childhood and adulthood; between love and hatred, between the old gods and the new.
Its title recalls Bret Easton Ellis’s infamous book, but while Ellis’s narrator was a blank slate, African Psycho’s protagonist is a quivering mass of lies, neuroses, and relentless internal chatter. Gregoire Nakobomayo, a petty criminal, has decided to kill his girlfriend Germaine. He’s planned the crime for some time, but still, the act of murder requires a bit of psychological and logistical preparation. Luckily, he has a mentor to call on, the far more accomplished serial killer Angoualima. The fact that Angoualima is dead doesn’t prevent Gregoire from holding lengthy conversations with him. Little by little, Gregoire interweaves Angoualima’s life and criminal exploits with his own. Continuing with the plan despite a string of botched attempts, Gregoire’s final shot at offing Germaine leads to an abrupt unraveling. Lauded in France for its fresh and witty style, African Psycho’s inventive use of language surprises and relieves the reader by injecting humor into this disturbing subject.
Leila Aboulela's American debut is a provocative, timely, and engaging novel about a young Muslim woman -- once privileged and secular in her native land and now impoverished in London -- gradually embracing her orthodox faith. With her Muslim hijab and down-turned gaze, Najwa is invisible to most eyes, especially to the rich families whose houses she cleans in London. Twenty years ago, Najwa, then at university in Khartoum, would never have imagined that one day she would be a maid. An upper-class Westernized Sudanese, her dreams were to marry well and raise a family. But a coup forces the young woman and her family into political exile in London. Soon orphaned, she finds solace and companionship within the Muslim community. Then Najwa meets Tamer, the intense, lonely younger brother of her employer. They find a common bond in faith and slowly, silently, begin to fall in love. Written with directness and force, "Minaret" is a lyric and insightful novel about Islam and an alluring glimpse into a culture Westerners are only just beginning to understand.
On Black Sisters Street tells the haunting story of four very different women who have left their African homeland for the riches of Europe—and who are thrown together by bad luck and big dreams into a sisterhood that will change their lives. Each night, Sisi, Ama, Efe, and Joyce stand in the windows of Antwerp’s red-light district, promising to make men’s desires come true—if only for half an hour. They offer their bodies to strangers but their hearts to no one, each focused on earning enough to get herself free, to send money home, or to save up for her own future. Drawn together by Sisi’s murder, the women must choose between their secrets and their safety. This first paperback edition of On Black Sisters Street celebrates the U.S. publication debut of Chika Unigwe, a brilliant new writer and a standout voice among contemporary African authors.
When a visiting croc expert invites Akimbo along on a field study, Akimbo is thrilled. But when the crocodiles attack the guide, injuring him gravely, it will be up to Akimbo to cross a crocodile-infested river and jump start a truck to bring back help. A rousing new Akimbo adventure from bestselling author Alexander McCall Smith. (recommended for Ages 7 to 9).
From the award-winning author of Half of a Yellow Sun, a dazzling new novel: a story of love and race centered around a young man and woman from Nigeria who face difficult choices and challenges in the countries they come to call home. As teenagers in a Lagos secondary school, Ifemelu and Obinze fall in love. Their Nigeria is under military dictatorship, and people are leaving the country if they can. Ifemelu--beautiful, self-assured--departs for America to study. She suffers defeats and triumphs, finds and loses relationships and friendships, all the while feeling the weight of something she never thought of back home: race. Obinze--the quiet, thoughtful son of a professor--had hoped to join her, but post-9/11 America will not let him in, and he plunges into a dangerous, undocumented life in London. Years later, Obinze is a wealthy man in a newly democratic Nigeria, while Ifemelu has achieved success as a writer of an eye-opening blog about race in America. But when Ifemelu returns to Nigeria, and she and Obinze reignite their shared passion--for their homeland and for each other--they will face the toughest decisions of their lives. Fearless, gripping, at once darkly funny and tender, spanning three continents and numerous lives, "Americanah" is a richly told story set in today's globalized world: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's most powerful and astonishing novel yet.
Meet Mma Ramotswe, the endearing, engaging, simply irresistible proprietress of The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency, the first and only detective agency in Botswana. With persistent observation, gentle intuition, and a keen desire to help people with the problems of their lives, she solves mysteries great and small for friends and strangers alike.
Set on the campus of a Nigerian university, Double Yoke tells the story of two undergraduates who must confront the conflicting demands of tradition and modernity. While Nko pursues an education despite the resistance of those who feel a woman's identity is assumed in traditional marriage, Ete Kamba's love for her is severely tested as he is himself locked into the rigid attitudes from which Nko is attempting to break free. Nko must further contend with unscrupulous professors who would take advantage of her tenuous role as a woman in a male-dominated environment. As the author candidly portrays the status of women in emerging African nations, the choices facing Ete Kamba and Nko are neither clearcut nor perfect. In Double Yoke, Buchi Emecheta faces them head on.
The story of a young boy's adventures as he takes it upon himself to solve the mystery of an 'evil' old neighbour in Geneva, and a missing auntie in Zimbabwe. Charming, funny and resonant, this is a novel about how one boy comes to understand what conflict can do to a person, a family, a whole country - and what it means to fight for peace. Questions, questions, questions. Ten-year-old Robert knows many things. He knows all about his hometown, Geneva, with its statues and cannons and underground tunnels and the Longest Bench in the World. He knows about the Red Cross and all the places his dad has been on his missions. He knows that his mum is writing a book about vampires and how long his older brother spends practicing his 'swag' poses in front of the mirror. He knows all about animals, too, because his Auntie Delphia is a vet in Zimbabwe. But still he has questions. Is his neighbour, Monsieur Renoir, really evil? Why did he leave a Victoria Cross medal on Robert's doorstep? And why has Auntie Delphia disappeared? In the 'Peace and Conflict' unit in school, Robert learned all about wars and heroes. But as the lives of his friends, foes and family unfold, he discovers what it really means to be a hero...
A funny, heartwarming story set in modern-day Zambia. One morning twelve-year-old Fred wakes up with an unaccountable sense of foreboding, which his friend Bul-Boo, one of the twins from next door, insists is just in his imagination. However, the feeling persists – and grows stronger when Fred’s terrifying great-granny, Nokokulu, asks him to accompany her on a trip to an ancient burial site known as the Place of Death. Then Bul-Boo overhears her parents talking about patients going missing from her mother’s AIDS clinic, and when one of the patients turns out to be Fred’s Aunt Kiki, the children suddenly view Nokokulu’s trip in a different light. Could the two events somehow be linked? As the three friends and the old woman journey into the heart of Zambia, each of them hopes to right wrongs, both past and present … but dark clouds are gathering and ancient magic is in the air.
In recent years, technological advances, higher commodity prices and a global thirst for energy have meant that African oil and gas are increasingly in demand. Countries as far apart as Niger, Uganda, Chad, Ghana, Kenya and Tanzania are looking at the prospect of almost unimaginable flows of money into their national budgets. But the story of African oil has usually been associated with disaster - older producers such as Nigeria, Angola and Cameroon have little to show for the many billions of dollars they've earned, and oil money has been shown to fuel conflict and corruption, creating a so-called 'resource curse'. In this revealing and insightful book, former BBC correspondent Celeste Hicks questions the inevitability of such an outcome, revealing what the discovery of oil means for the ordinary Africans through original testimony from those working in the oil industries and the communities that surround them. A much-needed account of an issue that will likely transform the fortunes of a number of African countries - for better or for worse.
Nadine Gordimer is one of our most telling contemporary writers. With each new work, she attacks--with a clear-eyed fierceness, a lack of sentimentality, and a deep understanding of the darkest depths of the human soul--her eternal themes: the inextricable link between personal and communal history; the inescapable moral ambiguities of daily life; the political and racial tensions that persist in her homeland, South Africa. And in each new work is fresh evidence of her literary genius: in the sharpness of her psychological insights, the stark beauty of her language, the complexity of her characters, and the difficult choices with which they are faced. In "No Time Like the Present," Gordimer trains her keen eye on Steve and Jabulile, an interracial couple living in a newly, tentatively, free South Africa. They have a daughter, Sindiswa; they move to the suburbs; Steve becomes a lecturer at a university; Jabulile trains to become a lawyer; there is another child, a boy this time. There is nothing so extraordinary about their lives, and yet, in telling their story and the stories of their friends and families, Gordimer manages to capture the tortured, fragmented essence of a nation struggling to define itself post-apartheid. The subject is contemporary, but Gordimer's treatment is, as ever, timeless. In "No Time Like the Present," she shows herself once again a master novelist, at the height of her prodigious powers.
"Just how overwhelming can these treasures be? They deliberately drown the whole of me Treasures of love, life, wisdom, family, and friends Prosperity, success, and salvation too big to comprehend." This book is a unique collection of inspirational poetry that ferociously paints, so vividly, a picture of love. A man's passionate love for: -The woman of his dream. -His prosperous hometown, Abiriba. -The city of his birth, Lagos. -His country Nigeria, hence his vicious attack on corruption. -Success and its principles. A man falls helplessly in love as he's awestruck by the woman of his dream and desperately needs her to be his. These rhythmically rhyming lyrics motivate and lead us to his emotional thought-provoking views on life, death, the hereafter, and so forth. We are then mercilessly propelled into the bloody front line of battle with a sea of mutilated casualties all around. He ends by reminding us just how crazy God is about all of us. SOME POEMS INCLUDE: 2 Face, Abiriba the Beautiful, Blessed Nigeria, Immortality, From Tehran, I ran, Lagos Blues, Mother of the Human Nation, October 1, 1960, World War III.
The author ranks as one of the foremost living traditional African storytellers - as recognised by the acclaim of his first book, The Palmvine Drinkard. This book includes seven folktales especially for young adults, but of universal appeal. Beautiful black and white ink drawings illustrate the tales whose cast of characters include humans, a goddess, an elephant woman, a boa constrictor and a shell-man.
From the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature and author of the Cairo trilogy, comes Akhenaten, a fascinating work of fiction about the most infamous pharaoh of ancient Egypt. In this beguiling new novel, originally published in 1985 and now appearing for the first time in the United States, Mahfouz tells with extraordinary insight the story of the "heretic pharaoh," or "sun king,"--and the first known monotheistic ruler--whose iconoclastic and controversial reign during the 18th Dynasty (1540-1307 B.C.) has uncanny resonance with modern sensibilities. Narrating the novel is a young man with a passion for the truth, who questions the pharaoh's contemporaries after his horrible death--including Akhenaten's closest friends, his most bitter enemies, and finally his enigmatic wife, Nefertiti--in an effort to discover what really happened in those strange, dark days at Akhenaten's court. As our narrator and each of the subjects he interviews contribute their version of Akhenaten, "the truth" becomes increasingly evanescent. Akhenaten encompasses all of the contradictions his subjects see in him: at once cruel and empathic, feminine and barbaric, mad and divinely inspired, his character, as Mahfouz imagines him, is eerily modern, and fascinatingly ethereal. An ambitious and exceptionally lucid and accessible book, Akhenaten is a work only Mahfouz could render so elegantly, so irresistibly.
Son of the Native Soil is a work whose quiet maturity glows in both subject and style. Here, love heals but the force of hate is very real. The hero, Lucas Achamba, by charisma and love undertakes to unite Dudum clan which politicking and egotism have split. His quick success stirs bitter rivalry and heartless cruelty that decide his fate. Nature is jumpy and even hysterical at this, and Ambanasom exposes it with fine evocative mastery. The style is refined and honeyed by sonal devices and visual tropes that half conceal subtle slashes at human foibles.
Just before 3am on January 24th, 1941, when Britain was preoccupied with surviving the Blitz, the body of Josslyn Hay, Earl of Erroll, was discovered lying on the floor of his Buick, at a road intersection some miles outside Nairobi, with a bullet in his head. A leading figure in Kenya's colonial community he had recently been appointed Military Secretary, but he was primarily a seducer of other men's wives. Sir Henry Delves Broughton, whose wife was Erroll's current conquest, had an obvious motive for the murder, but no one was ever convicted and the question of who killed him became a classic mystery, a scandel and cause celebre. Among those who became fascinated with the Erroll case was Cyril connolly. He joined up with James fox for a major investigation of the case in 1969 for the SUNDAY TIMES magazine. After his death James Fox inherited the obsession and a commitment to continue in pursuit of the story both in England and Kenya in the late 1970s. One day, on a veranda overlooking the Indian Ocean, Fox came across a piece of evidence that seemed to bring all the fragments and pieces together and convinced him that he saw a complete picture.
The New Kings of Crude: China, India, and the Global Struggle for Oil in Sudan and South Sudan (by Luke A. Patey)
In the past decade, the need for oil in Asia's new industrial powers, China and India, has grown dramatically. The New Kings of Crude takes the reader from the dusty streets of an African capital to Asia's glistening corporate towers to provide a first look at how the world's rising economies established new international oil empires in Sudan, amid one of Africa's longest-running and deadliest civil wars. For over a decade, Sudan fuelled the international rise of Chinese and Indian national oil companies. But the political turmoil surrounding the historic division of Africa's largest country, with the birth of South Sudan, challenged Asia's oil giants to chart a new course. Luke Patey weaves together the stories of hardened oilmen, powerful politicians, rebel fighters, and human rights activists to show how the lure of oil brought China and India into Sudan--only later to ensnare both in the messy politics of a divided country. His book also introduces the reader to the Chinese and Indian oilmen and politicians who were willing to become entangled in an African civil war in the pursuit of the world's most coveted resource. It offers a portrait of the challenges China and India are increasingly facing as emerging powers in the world.