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Memoirs Of A Porcupine

Translator: Helen Stevenson
Imprint: Serpent's Tail
Subject: Fiction, World Literature

Memoirs Of A Porcupine

Alain Mabanckou

From the winner of the Grand Prix de la Littérature 2012

eBook (ePUB/MOBI)?
9781847656520 (5 May 2011)

About the book

Finalist for the Man Booker International Prize 2015

Outlandish, surreal and compelling, a murderous porcupine tells all:

'For years I was the double of Kibandi . . . He died the day before yesterday, so here is my confession'

All human beings, says an African legend, have an animal double. Some are benign, others wicked.

When Kibandi, a boy living in a Congolese village, reaches the age of eleven, his father takes him out into the night, and forces him to drink a vile liquid from a jar which has been hidden for years in the earth. This is his initiation and, from this point on, he, and his double, a porcupine, become murderers, attacking neighbours, fellow villagers, and anyone unfortunate enough to cross their path.

But now Kibandi is dead, and the porcupine, free of his master, is free to tell their story at last.

About the author

Alain Mabanckou was born in 1966 in the Congo. He currently lives in LA, where he teaches literature at UCLA. One of Africa's major writers, he is the author of six volumes of poetry and six novels. He received the Subsaharan African Literature Prize for Blue-White-Red, and the Prix Renaudot for Memoirs of a Porcupine. He was selected by the French journal Lire as one of the fifty writers to watch out for this coming century. He was awarded the Grand Prix de la Littérature in 2012, and in 2015 was listed as a finalist for the Man Booker International Prize.Other novels, African Psycho [9781846686412], Broken Glass [9781846688157] and Black Bazaar [9781846687778] are also published by Serpent's Tail.


Praise for Broken Glass:
'A dizzying combination of erudition, bawdy humour and linguistic effervescence

- Financial Times

Obsessive and slyly playful . . . the prose runs wild to weave endless sentences, their rhythm and pace attuned to the narrator's rhetorical extravagances

- Independent

A comic romp that releases Mabanckou's sense of humour . . . His jokes work the whole spectrum of humour

- Guardian

Additional Information

Translator: Helen Stevenson
Imprint: Serpent's Tail
Subject: Fiction, World Literature