Voice of America (Hardcover)
Harper, 9780061990861, 224pp.
Publication Date: November 2, 2010
Other Editions of This Title:
“E.C. Osondu is a man with a clear head and a great ear, writing from crucial places.” —Jonathan Franzen, author of Freedom and The Corrections
“With observant wonder and subtle humor, [Osondu] portrays…our unique capacity for hope and hopelessness rolled together.” —Mary Gaitskill, author of Bad Behavior and Veronica
This collection of vivid, compulsively readable stories marks the debut of Nigerian author E.C. Osondu, winner of the 2009 Caine Prize for African Writing. In the tradition of Wole Soyinka, Nadine Gordimer, J.M. Coetzee, and Chinua Achebe (all patrons of the Caine Prize), Osondu’s stories are wise, soul-stirring, and deeply compelling. In electrifying prose, he articulate the struggles of Nigerian immigrants in America, and refugees, villagers, and ex-patriots in Africa. Voice of America marks the beginning for a brave and remarkable new voice in African Literature.
About the Author
E. C. Osondu is the author of Voice of America. Born in Nigeria, he received his MFA from Syracuse University and is the winner of the Caine Prize for African Writing and a Pushcart Prize. His fiction has appeared in The Atlantic, n+1, Guernica, and other publications. He teaches at Providence College in Rhode Island.
Praise For Voice of America…
— Jonathan Franzen
“His characters may dream about America, but E. C. Osondu’s bracing portrayal of life in Africa is the heart of this debut story collection.”
— The New York Times
“Osondu looks at the human condition in all its poignant absurdity; with observant wonder and subtle humor, he portrays our capacity for heartbreak, resilience, love, courage, sorrow, and most of all, our unique capacity for hope and hopelessness rolled together.”
— Mary Gaitskill
“E. C. Osondu has written uncannily direct stories with nothing ‘posed’ about them. This is a collection of real power, surprise, and harsh beauty.”
— Amy Hempel
“A big-hearted story collection. . . . Meticulous and energetic, these stories brim with stubborn hope sprung free from life’s dark realities.”
“Osondu’s excellent short stories, set in both Nigeria and the U.S., reveal the vast cultural chasm that persists between our countries. . . . These richly shaded tales explore old ways and new, wealth and poverty, myth, and misapprehension.”
“Compelling. . . . Osondu’s direct and humorous insights and poetic descriptions create a captivating portrait of time and place. . . . Whereas the stories set in Nigeria have a fablesque quality, the American-set tales are poignant studies of the immigrant experience.”
— Publishers Weekly
“Tinged with hilarity. . . . Osondu juxtaposes the richness and desperation of life ‘on the ground’ in Africa with the actualities of the American dream. . . . He goes beyond mere examination to achieve artistry. . . . This book is essential.”
— Library Journal