A spellbinding novel about family secrets and bonds, thwarted hope and the brutal realities of life in a society rife with inequality, from the Women’s Prize-shortlisted author
LONGLISTED FOR THE BOOKER PRIZE 2023
MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK OF 2023: the Observer, Guardian, Financial Times, Stylist, the Express and Oprah Daily
Ayòbámi Adébáyò, the Women’s Prize-shortlisted author of Stay With Me, unveils a dazzling story of modern Nigeria and two families caught in the riptides of wealth, power, romantic obsession and political corruption.
Eniola is tall for his age, a boy who looks like a man. His father has lost his job, so Eniola spends his days running errands for the local tailor, collecting newspapers and begging, dreaming of a big future.
Wuraola is a golden girl, the perfect child of a wealthy family. Now an exhausted young doctor in her first year of practice, she is beloved by Kunle, the volatile son of family friends.
When a local politician takes an interest in Eniola and sudden violence shatters a family party, Wuraola and Eniola’s lives become intertwined. In this breathtaking novel, Ayòbámi Adébáyò shines her light on Nigeria, on the gaping divide between the haves and the have-nots, and the shared humanity that lives in between.
“A moving story, skilfully told, about Eniola, a boy whose future has been snatched away from him, and Wuraola, a talented, overworked junior doctor, whose intertwined narratives combine to produce an insightful portrait of an unequal and deeply divided society moving towards a terrible crisis. A Spell of Good Things is both gripping and memorable”
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“A powerful, staggering read”
booker Prize 2023
“An outstanding read”
bbc Radio 4 Woman’s Hour
“Heart-rending … a breeze to read, despite the weightiness of its subject matter … Adebayo handles her characters with empathy and nuance, showing their vulnerabilities, yearnings, shame and delusions”
“Compelling … This immensely readable novel is a blistering indictment of the abuse of power (political and domestic) and the ubiquitous violence that can destroy lives overnight”
Ayòbámi Adébáyò was born in Lagos, Nigeria. Her debut novel, Stay With Me, won the 9mobile Prize for Literature, was shortlisted for the Baileys Prize for Women’s Fiction, the Wellcome Book Prize and the Kwani? Manuscript Prize. It has been translated into twenty languages and the French translation was awarded the Prix Les Afriques. Longlisted for the International Dylan Thomas Prize and the International Dublin Literary Award, Stay With Me was a New York Times, Guardian, Chicago Tribune and NPR Best Book of the Year. Ayòbámi Adébàyò splits her time between Norwich and Lagos.
ayobamiadebayo.com | @ayobamiadebayo