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Top 10 Nigerian Authors of All Time

Nigeria is undoubtedly a great nation. The country has continued to produce great writers whose works are read across the world. When we mention men like Wole Soyinka and Chinua Achebe, you might think those are all Nigeria has. The truth: there is a long list of talented writers of Nigerian descent.

Today, we shall look at the top 10 Nigerian authors. Nonetheless, our list is not absolute. Great Nigerian authors are innumerable.

Wole Soyinka

He was born Akinwande Oluwole Babatunde Soyinka on July 13th, 1934 in the present-day Ogun State. More so, Soyinka is the first African Literary Noble Laureate. His works are anchored in play, poetry, and essay. He has a good number of works in play, essay, and poetry, and a few novels like The Interpreter, Season of Anomy.

Chinua Achebe

Chinua Achebe is popularly referred to as the father of African literature. Most of his works talk about African society and how it has come to be in the modern world. Meanwhile, Things Fall Apart which he wrote in 1958 is termed his masterpiece. He was born in Ogidi, Anambra State in 1930.

Buchi Emecheta


Florence Onyebuchi Emecheta was a Nigerian novelist and essayist who based in the UK from 1962. She was born on July 21, 1944. Her first book, In the Ditch, was published in 1972. Buchi was a literary giant who won so many literary awards including Jock Campbell prize, Best of Young British Novelist among others.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Chimamanda is currently referred to as the modern Chinua Achebe. Their works share some similarities. However, Chimamanda’s works have won numerous international award ad nominations. Purple Hibiscus, Americanah, and Half of a Yellow Sun are some of her works. She was born on 15th September 1977 in Enugu.

Ben Okri

Ben Okri is a poet and novelist. He was born on 15th March 1959 in Minna. He is compared with Gabriel García Márquez and also considered one of the foremost African writers in the post-modern and post-colonial traditions. Ben has won the Man Booker Award and some of his works are Flower and Shadows, Dangerous Love.

Elnathan John

Elnathan John is another Nigerian author who has risen to the top and therefore recognised as one of the best. He is a novelist, satirist, and lawyer. Some of his works include Be(com)ing a Nigerian: A Guide, On Ajayi Crowther Street, and so on. The young man was born in Kaduna in 1982. He has also been twice nominated for Caine Prize for African Writing.

Helon Habila Ngalabak

Helon Habila is a Gombe State-born novelist and poet. He was born in November 1967. This seasoned writer has won so many awards through his works. In 2001, he won the Caine Prize and the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize in 2003. Some of his books are Prison Stories, Measuring Time, and so on.

Lola Shoneyin

Titilola Atinuke Shoneyin was born in Ibadan on 26th February 1974. She is a poet known to have written volumes of poems. However, in 2010, she launched her debut novel, “The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives.” She has also won numerous literary award including the PEN Award and Ken Saro-Wiwa Award. Lola was also named in the list of Orange Prize Award in the UK for her debut novel.

Teju Cole

Teju is not only an author; he is also a photographer and an art historian. He was born in America on 27th June 1975. In 2012, He won the PEN/Hemingway Award, International Literature Award in 2013, and the Guggenheim Fellowship for Creative Arts, US & Canada in 2018. He is reputed for his works such as Open City, Every Day Is for the Thief and many others.

Chigozie Obioma

Chigozie Obioma is yet another Nigerian author who is quickly sprouting to the top. This young man was born in Akure in 1986. Due to his works, the New York Times book review called Obioma “the heir of Chinua Achebe.” He has a long list of awards and honours to his name too. He wrote The Fishermen, An Orchestra of Minorities and others.

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