This twelve-piece, limited-edition box set--an African Poetry Book Fund (APBF) project--features the work of eleven new African poets.
“Tano is exquisitely composed and designed. This is a boxed set to be collected—and coveted.” —World Literature Today
The limited-edition box set is an annual project started in 2014 to ensure the publication of up to a dozen chapbooks by African poets through Akashic Books. The series seeks to identify the best poetry written by African poets working today, and it is especially interested in featuring poets who have not yet published their first full-length book of poetry.
The eleven poets included in this box set are: Leila Chatti, Saddiq Dzukogi, Amanda Holiday, Omotara James, Yalie Kamara, Rasaq Malik, Umniya Najaer, Kechi Nomu, Romeo Oriogun, Henk Rossouw, and Alexis Teyie.
CHRIS ABANI, a Nigerian-born, award-winning poet and novelist, currently teaches at Northwestern University in Chicago. He is the recipient of a PEN USA Freedom-to-Write Award, a Prince Claus Award, a Lannan Literary Fellowship, a California Book Award, a Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, a PEN Beyond Margins Award, a PEN/Hemingway Award, and a Guggenheim Award. He is the author of the novellas Song for Night and Becoming Abigail, the editor of Lagos Noir and the series coeditor, with Kwame Dawes, of the African Poetry Book Series—the latest of which is Tisa: New-Generation African Poets, A Chapbook Box Set.
KWAME DAWES’s debut novel She’s Gone (Akashic) was the winner of the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award (Debut Fiction). He is the author of twenty-one books of poetry and numerous other books of fiction, criticism, and essays. In 2016, his book Speak from Here to There, a cowritten collection of verse with Australian poet John Kinsella, was released along with When the Rewards Can Be So Great: Essays on Writing and the Writing Life, which Dawes edited. His most recent collection, City of Bones: A Testament, was published in 2017. His awards include the Forward Poetry Prize, the Hollis Summers Poetry Prize, the Musgrave Silver Medal, several Pushcart Prizes, the Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award, and an Emmy Award. He is Glenna Luschei Editor of Prairie Schooner and is Chancellor Professor of English at the University of Nebraska. Dawes serves as the associate poetry editor for Peepal Tree Press and is director of the African Poetry Book Fund. He is series editor of the African Poetry Book Series—the latest of which is Tisa: New-Generation African Poets, A Chapbook Box Set—and artistic director of the Calabash International Literary Festival. Dawes is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and in 2018 was elected as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. Bivouac is his latest work published by Akashic.
This annual anthology of emerging African poets edited by Kwame Dawes and Chris Abani introduces new poets, each with a chapbook as part of the boxed set. The anthology, along with other projects of the African Poetry Book Fund, is credited with publishing the earliest work of rising African stars such as Warsan Shire, Safia Elhillo and Ladan Osman.
— The Root, Included in Best Black Books in 2018
[James’s] limited-edition chapbook was selected by Kwame Dawes, Chris Abani, and the African Poetry Book Fund, in collaboration with Akashic Books, for the 2018 New Generation African Poets Box Set, and I am tickled pink for its release this month. James’ voice is so unique and genuine; she’s definitely a poet to have on your poetdar, and I’m sure this whole collection will be stellar.
— The Coil, on Daughter Tongue by Omotara James, Included in the Coil’s Most Anticipated April 2018 Books
[This collection] continues the African Poetry Book Fund project to identify the best poetry by African poets working today and ensure their publication. This 12-piece, limited-edition box set features the work of 11 new poets.
— Publishers Weekly, Spring 2018 Announcements, Poetry
The chapbooks gathered here are almost overflowing with voice . . . . Each of these chapbooks is so worthy of praise and attention that it is not possible to do them justice in the space afforded this review. They deserve, and hopefully will receive, the specific and individual attention of critics and readers, and their authors deserve to enjoy long and noted careers.
— Untucked Magazine
An ambitious, vital project that delivers exactly what it promises . . . As a group, the chapbooks dispel stereotypes about African writing. They also illustrate what editors Dawes and Abani note about the many ways poets can understand or redefine their ties to Africa. These insights are poignant and valuable, especially at a time when millions around the globe find themselves somewhere between new countries and ancestral lands they’ve left behind.
— Washington Post