This is the fifth anthology of Caine Prize shortlisted stories, and the third to include the proceedings of a Caine Prize African Writers' Workshop. Out of the twelve countries represented on the five shortlists to date, three have been North African, three East African, three West African and three from southern Africa. So the prize has a truly pan-African reach. It is widely referred to now as 'the African Booker' and 'Africa's leading literary award' – in Africa, in the UK and increasingly in the US.
The impact on the writers' lives has been dramatic. The first two winners, Leila Aboulela and Helon Habila, have both had outstanding success with their work since Habila won a Commonwealth prize for his first novel in 2002 and his second novel is with the publishers. Leila Aboulela's second novel, Minaret, has just been published by Bloomsbury. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Caine Prize shortlist 2002) was on the Orange Prize shortlist for her first novel, Purple Hibiscus, published by Harper, and it won the Commonwealth First Book Prize in 2005. Hassounah Mosbahi's story, The Tortoise, which was shortlisted in 2001, appears in an excellent collection of stories from North Africa, Sardines and Oranges, published this year by Banipal. And Doreen Baingana, shortlisted in 2004, was given a Writers' Programme Award for her collection, Tropical Fish – Stories from Entebbe, published this year by Massachusetts University Press.
The 2004 Caine Prize winner is the Zimbabwean writer, Brian Chikwava. Also on the shortlist, with Doreen Baingana, were Monica Arac de Nyeko, also from Uganda, Parselelo Kantai from Kenya and Chika Unigwe from Nigeria. Their stories appear in this volume. Except for Kantai, who was busy on a Reuters' fellowship at Oxford Univerity, they participated in this year's Caine Prize Writers' workshop, as did Charles Mungoshi (Zimbabwe) and Jackee Batanda (Uganda), who were both highly commended by the 2004 Prize judges.
If you would like to know more about the Caine Prize click here.
|Parameters of Book: Book|
|Sub-title:||A selection of writings from the Caine Prize for African Writing 2004|
|Colour:||Black & White|