UPCOMING NEW BOOK: The Chibok Girls: The Boko Haram Kidnappings and Islamist Militancy in Nigeria by Helon Habila

On April 14, 2014, 276 Nigerian female students were kidnapped by militant extremist group Boko Haram from their Government Secondary school in Chibok, Nigeria. Since then, some of the girls managed to escape.

George Mason University Associate Professor and novelist Helon Kabila, uses a journalistic approach and a first person narratives to give a back story that involves stories of Nigerian colonialism and religious conflict. He retells the story of the Boko Haram kidnappings with references employed via personal accounts from the girls families.

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.


The book will be released on December 5th but is currently available to pre-order via Click here to learn more.

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