A heartbreaking, exquisitely written masterpiece.
One of the ten books – novels, memoirs and one very unusual biography – that make up our Matchbook Classics’ series, a stunningly redesigned collection of some of the best loved titles on our backlist.
In 1960s Nigeria, three lives intersect. Ugwu, a boy from a poor village, works as a houseboy for a university professor. Olanna has abandoned her life of privilege in Lagos to live with her charismatic lover, the professor. And Richard, a shy Englishman, is in thrall to Olanna’s enigmatic twin sister. As the horrific Nigerian Civil War engulfs them, they are thrown together and pulled apart in ways they had never imagined.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s masterpiece is a novel about the end of colonialism, class and race – and about the ways in which love can complicate all of these things.
About the author
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie was born in Nigeria in 1977. Her first novel ‘Purple Hibiscus’ was published in 2003 and was longlisted for the Booker Prize. Her second novel ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’ won the 2007 Orange Prize for Fiction. Her short story collection, ‘The Thing Around Your Neck’, was published to critical acclaim in 2009. Her work has been selected by the Commonwealth Broadcasting Association and the BBC Short Story Awards, has appeared in various literary publications, including Zoetrope and The Iowa Review. She won a MacArthur ‘genius’ grant in 2009, and in 2010 appeared on the New Yorker’s list of the best 20 writers under 40. Her third novel, ‘Americanah’, was published to widespread critical acclaim in 2013. She lives in Nigeria.
- ‘Vividly written, thrumming with life…a remarkable novel. In its compassionate intelligence as in its capacity for intimate portraiture, this novel is a worthy successor to such twentieth-century classics as Chinua Achebe’s “Things Fall Apart” and V. S. Naipaul’s “A Bend in the River”.’ Joyce Carol Oates
- ‘Here is a new writer endowed with the gift of ancient storytellers.’ Chinua Achebe
- ‘I look with awe and envy at this young woman from Africa who is recording the history of her country. She is fortunate – and we, her readers, are even luckier.’ Edmund White
- ‘Absolutely awesome. One of the best books I’ve ever read.’ Judy Finnigan
- ‘[Deserves] a place alongside such works as Pat Barker’s “Regeneration” trilogy and Helen Dunmore’s depiction of the Leningrad blockade, “The Siege”.’ Guardian