Pushkin signs The Fishermen for ONE

Pushkin Press' new imprint, ONE, has made its first world English-language acquisition, with editor Elena Lappin buying The Fishermen by 26-year-old Nigerian debut novelist Chigozie Obioma.

Lappin signed the deal with Jessica Craig at United Agents and Peter Steinberg of The Steinberg Agency, New York.

Told by nine-year-old Benjamin, the youngest of four brothers, the novel tells the story of  “an unforgettable childhood in a small western Nigerian town in the mid-1990s, when the boys use their strict father’s absence from home to go fishing instead of attending school, and become exposed to a local madman whose mystic prophecy of violence threatens the core of the close-knit family”.  

Lappin said: "[Obioma's] masterful writing simply took my breath away, in its sheer power to involve the reader in the life of his characters, from the first sentence to the last. There is a similarity with The Kite Runner, in telling a painful story with great beauty and grace."