Title: BORN ON A TUESDAY
Author: ELNATHAN JOHN
Genre: Prose (Adult Fiction)
Publisher: Black Cat & Cassava Republic Press
Year of Publication: 2016
ISBN: 978-0-8021-2482-1 & 9781911115021
Awards: Shortlist, NLNG’s The Nigeria Prize For Literature
- Born on a Tuesday by Elnathan John review – a compelling debut set in northern Nigeria
- Our New York Times Book Review: Growing Up in Radicalized Nigeria: A New Novel Shows the Gritty Reality
- Born on a Tuesday by Elnathan John: Nigeria’s Invisible Voices
Born on a Tuesday Elnathan John’s is stirring, starkly rendered first novel, about an intelligent young boy struggling to find his place in a society that is fracturing along extreme religious and political lines.
In the far reaches of northwestern Nigeria, Dantala lives among a gang of street boys who sleep under a kuka tree. During the election, the boys are paid by the Small Party to cause trouble.
When their attempt to burn down the opposition’s local headquarters ends in disaster, Dantala must run for his life, leaving his best friend behind. He makes his way to a mosque that provides him with food, shelter, and guidance.
With his quick aptitude and modest nature, Dantala becomes a favored apprentice to the mosque’s benevolent sheikh. But before long, he is faced with a terrible conflict of loyalties.
His mother is dying back in his native village, his brothers have joined a rival sect, and one of the sheikh’s closest advisers begins to raise his own radical movement.
As bloodshed erupts in the city around him, Dantala must decide what kind of Muslim—and what kind of man—he wants to be.
Told in Dantala’s naive, searching voice, this astonishing debut explores the ways in which young men are seduced by religious fundamentalism and violence, and how friendship can prove to be the strongest bond of all. (Source: Grove Atlantic).
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