Debut novel by NoViolet Bulawayo

photo NoViolet BulawayoThe debut novel by Zimbabwean writer NoViolet Bulawayo was nominated for the Man Booker Prize 2013. This makes Noviolet Bulawayo the first black African woman and the first Zimbabwean to be shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize.

Her book We Need New Names tells the story of Darling and her friends Stina, Chipo, Godknows, Sbho, and Bastard. They all used to have proper houses, with real rooms and furniture, but now they all live in a shanty called Paradise. They spend their days stealing guavas, playing games and wondering how to get the baby out of young Chipo’s stomach. They dream of escaping to other paradises – America, Dubai, Europe. But if they do escape, will these new lands bring everything they wish for?

NoViolet Bulawayo (pen name of Elizabeth Zandile Tshele) was born in Tsholotsho, Zimbabwe. She earned her MFA at Cornell University, where she was also awarded a Truman Capote Fellowship, and she is currently a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University in California.

For more information on NoViolet Bulawayo, see

For more information on the Man Booker Prize, see