Cassava Republic Press, a leading African publishing house, is set to launch in the UK in April 2016. Introducing an eclectic list of quality literary fiction, crime, young adult fiction, children’s books, and romantic fiction under the Ankara Press imprint, the publisher aims to spotlight the vibrancy and diversity of prose by African writers on the continent and in the diaspora.
In partnership with the British Council as part of their UK/Nigeria 2015-16 programme, Cassava Republic Press will showcase the breadth of talent on the list across UK literature festivals next April. Today’s announcement coincides with a BBC Radio 4 special on the Nigerian literary scene, entitled ‘Writing a New Nigeria’, to be broadcast at 11.30am on Thursday 26th November and Thursday 3rd December, featuring publishers Bibi Bakare-Yusuf and Emma Shercliff and Cassava Republic Press authors Elnathan John, Abubakar Adam Ibrahim and Toni Kan.
From Elnathan John’s breathtakingly beautiful Born on a Tuesday which tackles unexplored aspects of friendship, love, trauma and politics in recent Northern Nigerian history and Sarah Ladipo Manyika’s mesmerising Like A Mule Bringing Ice Cream to the Sun, a subtle story about ageing, friendship and loss and the erotic yearnings of an older woman; to the pulsating crime novels Easy Motion Tourist (Leye Adenle) and The Lazurus Effect (H.J. Golokai); and Abubakar Adam Ibrahim’s Season of Crimson Blossoms, a controversial and gripping story of an affair between a devoted Muslim grandmother and a 25-year-old drug dealer and political thug- these books are bound to cause a ripple, and Cassava’s launch list represents an exciting new body of African literature linking writers across different times and spaces and genres.
“It is exciting to be launching Cassava Republic Press in the UK both as an intervention and as an opportunity to introduce the diversity of writings coming out of the continent. What we are doing is unprecedented: an African publishing house establishing a base in the UK after nearly ten years in Africa rather than the reverse. This is the birthing of African publishing onto the world stage.” - ibi Bakare-Yusuf said:
With headquarters in Abuja, Nigeria and founder Bibi Bakare-Yusuf now based in London, the trailblazing publisher is in a unique position to bring the finest contemporary African writing directly to UK audiences.