The Chibok Girls by Helon Habila
The Boko Haram Kidnappings and Islamist Militancy in Nigeria

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He finds parents still suffering (one was found wandering in the forest calling for his daughter) and is impressed by the bravery of the girls who were able to escape. A memorable portrait of individual resilience in a divided, strife-torn nation.
-Guardian

Synopsis

"In rescuing the Chibok tragedy from 'mythic status,' Habila's unusual primer quietly yet powerfully revives the call to take notice."--The Atlantic

On April 14, 2014, 276 girls from the Chibok Secondary School in northern Nigeria were kidnapped by Boko Haram, the world's deadliest terrorist group. Most were never heard from again. Acclaimed Nigerian novelist Helon Habila, who grew up in northern Nigeria, returned to Chibok and gained intimate access to the families of the kidnapped to offer a devastating account of this tragedy that stunned the world. With compassion and deep understanding of historical context, Habila tells the stories of the girls and the anguish of their parents; chronicles the rise of Boko Haram and the Nigerian government's inept response; and captures the indifference of the media and the international community whose attention has moved on.

Employing a fiction writer's sensibility and a journalist's curiosity, THE CHIBOK GIRLS provides poignant portraits of everyday Nigerians whose lives have been transformed by extremist forces. Habila illuminates the long history of colonialism--and unmasks cultural and religious dynamics--that gave rise to the conflicts that have ravaged the region to this day.
 

About Helon Habila

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Helon Habila is the internationally renowned author of Waiting for an Angel, which won both the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the Caine Prize for African Writing, and Measuring Time and Oil on Water. He was born in Nigeria and now divides his time between America and Nigeria.
 
Published November 30, 2016 by Columbia Global Reports. 130 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction
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Guardian

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Reviewed by PD Smith on Apr 28 2017

He finds parents still suffering (one was found wandering in the forest calling for his daughter) and is impressed by the bravery of the girls who were able to escape. A memorable portrait of individual resilience in a divided, strife-torn nation.

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