Achebe, 'greatest of all African writers', dies

Achebe, 'greatest of all African writers', dies

The death of novelist Chinua Achebe has been confirmed. 

A statement from The Wylie Agency on behalf of the Nigerian writer's family said his death, at the age of 82, had followed a brief illness. 

"One of the great literary voices of his time, he was also a beloved husband, father, uncle and grandfather, whose wisdom and courage are an inspiration to all who knew him," the agency said.

Simon Winder, publishing director at Penguin, said: "Chinua Achebe is the greatest of African writers and we are all desolate to hear of his death. Penguin is proud to publish the work of this utterly remarkable man."

Achebe's most recent book, There Was a Country: A Personal History of Biafra, was published by Allen Lane last September. His best known work Things Fall Apart has sold over 120,000 copies in the UK since Nielsen BookScan records began.