KOKOnista Of The Day: Chibundu Onuzo Is The Talented Novelist Everyone Should Be Reading


Imachibundu Oluwadara Onuzo is a Nigerian novelist. Her first novel, The Spider King’s Daughter, won a Betty Trask Award, was shortlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize and the Commonwealth Book Prize, and was longlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize and the Etisalat Prize for Literature.

Chibundu Onuzo was born in 1991 in Nigeria, the youngest of four children of parents who are doctors, and grew up in Lagos.

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She moved to England when she was 14 to study at an all-girls’ school in Winchester, Hampshire, for her GCSEs, and at the age of 17 began writing her first novel, which was signed two years later by Faber and Faber and was published when she was 21.

She was the youngest female writer ever taken on by the publisher. Onuzo received a first-class bachelor’s degree in history from King’s College London (2012), and went on to earn a master’s degree in public policy from University College London. As of 2017, she is studying for a PhD at King’s College London.

She is a contributor to the 2019 anthology New Daughters of Africa, edited by Margaret Busby.

Onuzo’s third novel, Sankofa, was published in the UK by Virago in June 2021. Sankofa will also be published by Catapult in the US and Narrative Landscape in Nigeria.

Photo Credit: Getty

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