**This article was originally published in part on my Women Writers blog in September 2008. That blog is now closed. I have updated this post to include Adichie’s latest work which was just published this month.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie was born September 15, 1977 in the town of Enugu in Nigeria, but grew up in the University town of Nsukka. Her first book – Purple Hibiscus – was set mostly in Nsukka. At the age of 19, Adichie left Nigeria to live in the United States where she attended several colleges, eventually earning a Masters degree in creative writing at John Hopkins University. She currently attends Yale University where she is pursuing an MA in African Studies.
Of her early writing, Adichie says:
I didn’t ever consciously decide to pursue writing. I’ve been writing since I was old enough to spell, and just sitting down and writing made me feel incredibly fulfilled. -From Adichie’s website–
Her awareness of Nigerian ethnic issues is prominent in her fiction, as are the challenges which women in Africa face. Perhaps it is not surprising that Adichie’s voice is being compared to Chinua Achebe.
Her most notable work is perhaps Half of A Yellow Sun (published in 2006 by Knopf/Anchor) which won her the 2007 Orange Prize for Fiction. Set in Biafra before and during the Biafran war, the novel is a powerful work of fiction. Her first novel – Purple Hibiscus (published in 2003) – won her recognition as Best First Book in 2005 for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize. The novel is heartbreaking and beautifully written.
The Thing Around Your Neck (published June 16, 2009)
- Official Website
- My review
- Q & A with Adichie about the book
- Review by Pages Turned
- Review by 1MoreChapter
- Review by The Magic Lasso
- Review by Musings
- Washington Post Article: The Color of an Awkward Conversation, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (published June 8, 2008) – Explores her thoughts on being black in America
- The Observer Article: My Old Man, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (published June 15, 2008) – Thoughts on her father
- CBC Article: The Untold Story, by Chimamanda Ngoi Adichie (published October 25, 2006) – Thoughts on the Civil War in Nigeria
- New Yorker Article: Sierra Leone – 1997 (published June 12, 2006) – Memories of a houseboy
Short Stories on Line:
- Cell One (published by the New Yorker January 29, 2007)
- The Headstrong Historian (published by the New Yorker June 23, 2008)
- A Tampered Destiny (published December 28, 2007 – PDF version)
- Ghosts (published by Zoetrope: All Story Winter 2004 Issue)
- Tomorrow is Too Far (published by Prospect January 2006 issue)