Nana Nkweti with Naomi Jackson
If we had our druthers, we’d have debut fiction writer Nana Nkweti read on nine different occasions from her dazzling book of stories, Walking on Cowrie Shells (Graywolf Press), such is the reach and variety of the stories herein. A finalist for the Caine Prize, most prestigious given for writing out of Africa, this book introduces an exciting new writer to the world.
“Beautiful and immersive. . . . Whether Nkweti is writing about water goddesses, zombies, or aspiring graphic novelists, she reveals and celebrates the rich inner lives of those who do not fit neatly into social and cultural categories. . . . Nkweti’s sentences soar, enthralling the reader through their every twist and turn, and often ending with a wry punch. . . . This is a groundbreaking and vital work.”―Publishers Weekly.
“Let us thank whoever granted Nana Nkweti her all-access-pass to the human soul, for with it she is able to gain entry into the lives of women and men, children and adults, the damaged and the damaging, the human and the not-quite, all with equal clarity and conviction. Walking on Cowrie Shells is a collection of verve, audacity, and consummate control. That it is her first book makes it all the more astonishing.”―Kevin Brockmeier, joined by Carmen Maria Machado, Yaa Gyasi, Karen Russell, Andrew Sean Greer, and more in early, ardent praise.
Joining Nana Nkweti this evening will be Naomi Jackson, who gave Elliott Bay readers a wonderful evening a few years back with her debut novel, The Star Side of Bird Hill.