Nigerian novel shortlisted for Kingston University Big Read 2017

Radio Sunrise by Nigerian writer, Anietie Isong, has been shortlisted for the Kingston University Big Read project.

The novel is one of the six shortlisted titles to be considered for staff and students to read before the 2017 academic year begins. Following the selection, Mr. Isong who is based in London has also made history as the first Nigerian author to have his novel shortlisted for the Kingston University Big Read.

The final shortlist, narrowed down from 140 suggested titles, includes authors from Scotland, Nigeria and Kenya. Some of the shortlisted novels include, My Name is Leon – Kit de Waal, The Brilliant and the Forever – Kevin MacNeil, The Power – Naomi Alderman, The Elephant and the Bee – Jess de Boer and The Penguin Lessons – Tom Mitchell.

A selection panel comprising of staff and students from all faculties and departments of Kingston University will set about reading the six shortlisted titles, before choosing the official Big Read in April. The book will then be sent out to students getting set to join Kingston University for the start of the 2017/18 academic year, with a number of events scheduled throughout the term to celebrate the project. Free copies of the book are also made available on campuses for all staff to join the conversation with students when they arrive.

Big Read Director, Associate Professor Alison Baverstock, said the shortlisted novels are a reflection of the university’s values.

“This is a really exciting list of six different titles from a range of authors who reflect the breadth and diversity of the University and our wider community.

The aim of the scheme is to bring people together through shared reading and we’re looking forward to exploring the shortlist to find our next Big Read,” she said.

Since 2015, Kingston University in London has sent a book to every undergraduate and postgraduate student about to join the institution as part of the Big Read campaign, which promotes student involvement and ensures new arrivals feel welcome before they arrive.

Students and staff are encouraged to join in judging the shortlisted titles through discussion posts on Facebook, with the winning choice announced on Friday 13 April.

Radio Sunrise, published in January 2017 by Jacaranda Books, is a hilarious, yet sobering take on the foibles of Nigerian life and politics from the perspective of a young journalist.

Mr. Isong recently read from the novel in London.

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