A group of writers are celebrating Nigeria’s independence day in the best way possible. They’ve put together an anthology titled Naija: The Book of Places. It is a powerful literary project that reflects on the idea of Nigeria in terms of space and place. The collection of stories, poetry, non-fiction pieces, and photography focus on a specific place in Nigeria.

In some ways, Enter Naija is a groundbreaking project. Nigerian literature has historically not been self-aware about space and place. Places appear in fictional works but mostly as an accidental part of the narrative. Never as the central focus. That was why a work like Teju Cole’s Everyday is for the Thief  was so novel when it first appeared. Cole elevated the city of Lagos to the status of a character. Lagos wasn’t simply this place where his story happened to have taken place. Lagos was the material and metaphorical center of the narrative.

The writers and artists in this collection do something similar, but they surpass Cole on one fundamental ground. Unlike Cole, they break the Nigerian literary obsession with Lagos. Their exploration of various geographies and urban spaces takes them all over the four corners of the nation—from Uyo to Nsukka to Kano to Ado-Ekiti.

The anthology is edited by the utterly brilliant Otosirieze Obi-Young and features the likes of Arinze Ifeakandu, Chisom Okafor, Bura-Bari Nwilo, Amatesiro Dore, Olanrewaju Tajudeen and a host of others. In his beautiful introduction to the work, the Nigerian book critic Ikhide Ikheloa makes a powerful case for seeing these writers and artists as the brave new future of African literature.

As the editor of one of Africa’s leading literary sites and an avid promoter of new African writing, I am truly happy to present to you this powerful, experimental, and endlessly delightful work.

Enter Naija is available for a free download right here at Brittle Paper. Click the link below to start reading:

ENTER NAIJA: THE BOOK OF PLACES | edited by Otosirieze Obi-Young


I'm finishing up a phd at Duke University where I study African novels, which I believe are some of the loveliest things ever written. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

6 Responses to “New Anthology Marks Nigeria’s 56th Independence Anniversary | Read Enter Naija: The Book of Places” Subscribe

  1. Amatesiro Dore 2016/10/02 at 7:35 am #

    You missed a comma:

    “Bura-Bari NwiloAmatesiro Dore”


  2. Ainehi Edoro 2016/10/02 at 7:37 am #

    It’s been updated. Thanks for letting me know and congrats on the collection!

  3. Omoya 2016/10/02 at 4:50 pm #

    It is so great to have ‘Enter Naija’ finally out. Never have I seen so many young talents come together to provide such an engaging offering as this. Big kudos to everyone who made this a success.

  4. Zigih 2016/10/03 at 7:51 am #

    This is great…keep up the good work guys

  5. Chimka 2016/10/07 at 10:46 am #

    This is beautiful. I have not finished it yet, but I already love the guy that wrote about Jos. His pieces is wonderful. I think I have to summon a little courage and start sending some of my writing out. I am just never satisfied with myself, I don’t know why.

  6. Otosirieze Obi-Young 2016/10/17 at 3:13 am #


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I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

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