“Harrowing, visionary. . . . it’s urgent, gorgeous work.” —Publishers Weekly

Tochi Onyebuchi is the author of Goliath. His previous fiction includes Riot Baby, a finalist for the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and NAACP Image Awards and winner of the New England Book Award for Fiction, the Ignyte Award for Best Novella, and the World Fantasy Award; the Beasts Made of Night series; and the War Girls series. His short fiction has appeared in The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, The Year’s Best Science Fiction, and elsewhere. His non-fiction includes the book (S)kinfolk and has appeared in The New York Times, NPR, and the Harvard Journal of African American Public Policy, among other places.

He has earned degrees from Yale University, New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, Columbia Law School, and the Paris Institute of Political Studies.

Goliath, his newest book, is a primal biblical epic flung into the future. It weaves together disparate narratives—a space-dweller looking at New Haven, Connecticut as a chance to reconnect with his spiraling lover; a group of laborers attempting to renew the promises of Earth’s crumbling cities; a journalist attempting to capture the violence of the streets; a marshal trying to solve a kidnapping—into a richly urgent mosaic about race, class, gentrification, and who is allowed to be the hero of any history.

Goliath: A Novel

Tordotcom |
Fiction

A New York Times Editors’ Choice Pick!

A Most Anticipated Pick for USA Today | Bustle | Buzzfeed | Goodreads | Nerdist | io9 | WBUR | Polygon | The New Scientist

Connecticut Book Award for Fiction winner! Dragon Award Finalist!

“In this ambitious novel, dense with perspectives and social commentary, Onyebuchi dreams up disparate lives in a crumbling future America—with gentrifiers returning to Earth from space colonies and laborers trying to make a precarious living—while leaving room for moments of beauty and humor.”—The New York Times, Editors’ Choice

In his adult novel debut, Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and NAACP Image Award finalist and ALA Alex and New England Book Award winner Tochi Onyebuchi delivers a sweeping science fiction epic in the vein of Samuel R. Delany and Station Eleven.

In the 2050s, Earth has begun to empty. Those with the means and the privilege have departed the great cities of the United States for the more comfortable confines of space colonies. Those left behind salvage what they can from the collapsing infrastructure. As they eke out an existence, their neighborhoods are being cannibalized. Brick by brick, their houses are sent to the colonies, what was once a home now a quaint reminder for the colonists of the world that they wrecked.

A primal biblical epic flung into the future, Goliath weaves together disparate narratives—a space-dweller looking at New Haven, Connecticut as a chance to reconnect with his spiraling lover; a group of laborers attempting to renew the promises of Earth’s crumbling cities; a journalist attempting to capture the violence of the streets; a marshal trying to solve a kidnapping—into a richly urgent mosaic about race, class, gentrification, and who is allowed to be the hero of any history.

Skinfolk

Fiction Advocate |
Nonfiction

Literary Nonfiction. African & African American Studies. When Did You First Realize You Were Black? Provoked by the fraught relationship between the African continent and American culture in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah, acclaimed Nigerian-American novelist Tochi Onyebuchi takes an emotional and intellectual journey through his own education in Blackness–his first loves, his introduction to politics, and his eventual commitment to the struggle.

Ranging from Paris to a Connecticut boarding school to a harrowing walk through the streets of Palestine, and touching on lessons from Frantz Fanon, Sylvia Wynter, Mohsin Hamid, August Wilson, Dear White People, and Black Panther, Onyebuchi blends memoir and cultural criticism to explore the ways in which identities, like diamonds, are pressurized into existence by suffering, and how the other side of suffering is self-determination.

(S)KINFOLK culminates in a trip to Nigeria, the homeland, where the author realizes that we share a future, as Black Americans and Africans, on this asymptotic journey toward self-actualization.

Rebel Sisters

Razorbill |
Young Adult Fiction

In the epic, action-packed sequel to the “brilliant” (Booklist, starred review) novel War Girls, the battles are over, but the fight for justice has just begun.

It’s been five years since the Biafran War ended. Ify is now nineteen and living where she’s always dreamed–the Space Colonies. She is a respected, high-ranking medical officer and has dedicated her life to helping refugees like herself rebuild in the Colonies.

Back in the still devastated Nigeria, Uzo, a young synth, is helping an aid worker, Xifeng, recover images and details of the war held in the technology of destroyed androids. Uzo, Xifeng, and the rest of their team are working to preserve memories of the many lives lost, despite the government’s best efforts to eradicate any signs that the war ever happened.

Though they are working toward common goals of helping those who suffered, Ify and Uzo are worlds apart. But when a mysterious virus breaks out among the children in the Space Colonies, their paths collide. Ify makes it her mission to figure out what’s causing the deadly disease. And doing so means going back to the homeland she thought she’d left behind forever.

Riot Baby

Tordotcom |
Fiction

Winner of the 2021 World Fantasy Award
Winner of an 2021 ALA Alex Award
Winner of the 2020 New England Book Award for Fiction
Winner of the 2021 Ignyte Award
Winner of the 2021 AABMC Literary Award

A 2021 Finalist for the NAACP Image Award for Best Outstanding Work of Literary Fiction
A 2021 Hugo Award Finalist
A 2021 Nebula Award Finalist
A 2021 Locus Award Finalist
A Goodreads Choice Awards Finalist

A Most Anticipated in 2020 Pick for Book Riot | Buzzfeed | Paste | WBUR

Named a Best of 2020 Pick for NPR | Wired | Book Riot | Publishers Weekly | NYPL | The Austen Chronicle | Kobo | Google Play | Powell’s Books | Den of Geek

Riot Baby, Onyebuchi’s first novel for adults, is as much the story of Ella and her brother, Kevin, as it is the story of black pain in America, of the extent and lineage of police brutality, racism and injustice in this country, written in prose as searing and precise as hot diamonds.”—The New York Times

Riot Baby bursts at the seams of story with so much fire, passion and power that in the end it turns what we call a narrative into something different altogether.”—Marlon James

Ella has a Thing. She sees a classmate grow up to become a caring nurse. A neighbor’s son murdered in a drive-by shooting. Things that haven’t happened yet. Kev, born while Los Angeles burned around them, wants to protect his sister from a power that could destroy her. But when Kev is incarcerated, Ella must decide what it means to watch her brother suffer while holding the ability to wreck cities in her hands.

Rooted in the hope that can live in anger, Riot Baby is as much an intimate family story as a global dystopian narrative. It burns fearlessly toward revolution and has quietly devastating things to say about love, fury, and the black American experience.

Ella and Kev are both shockingly human and immeasurably powerful. Their childhoods are defined and destroyed by racism. Their futures might alter the world.

War Girls

Razorbill |
Young Adult Fiction

Two sisters are torn apart by war and must fight their way back to each other in a futuristic, Black Panther-inspired Nigeria.

The year is 2172. Climate change and nuclear disasters have rendered much of earth unlivable. Only the lucky ones have escaped to space colonies in the sky.

In a war-torn Nigeria, battles are fought using flying, deadly mechs and soldiers are outfitted with bionic limbs and artificial organs meant to protect them from the harsh, radiation-heavy climate. Across the nation, as the years-long civil war wages on, survival becomes the only way of life.

Two sisters, Onyii and Ify, dream of more. Their lives have been marked by violence and political unrest. Still, they dream of peace, of hope, of a future together.

And they’re willing to fight an entire war to get there.

Acclaimed author, Tochi Onyebuchi, has written an immersive, action-packed, deeply personal novel perfect for fans of Nnedi Okorafor, Marie Lu, and Paolo Bacigalupi.

Crown of Thunder

Razorbill |
Young Adult Fiction

In the sequel to the acclaimed Beasts Made of Night, Taj has escaped Kos, but Queen Karima will go to any means necessary–including using the most deadly magic–to track him down.

Taj is headed west, but the consequences of leaving Kos behind confront him at every turn. Innocent civilians flee to refugee camps as Karima’s dark magic continues to descend on the city. Taj must return, but first he needs a plan.

With Arzu’s help, Taj and Aliya make it to the village of her ancestors, home of the tastahlik–sin-eaters with Taj’s same ability to both battle and call forth sins. As Taj comes to terms with his new magic, he realizes there are two very different groups of tastahlik–one using their powers for good, the other for more selfish ends.

Aliya is struggling with her own unique capabilities. She’s immersed in her work to uncover the secret to Karima’s magic, but her health begins to mysteriously deteriorate. With the help of a local western mage, Aliya uncovers her true destiny–a future she’s not sure she wants.

As Taj and Aliya explore their feelings for each other and Arzu connects with her homeland, the local westerners begin to question Taj’s true identity. Karima is on his heels, sending dark warnings to the little village where he’s hiding. Taj will have to go back and face her before she sends her most deadly weapon–Taj’s former best friend, Bo.

Beasts Made of Night

Razorbill |
Young Adult Fiction

“…The beginning of a great saga…” —NPR.org

“This compelling Nigerian-influenced fantasy has a wonderfully unique premise and lush, brilliant worldbuilding that will consume you until the last page.”—Buzzfeed

“…Unforgettable in its darkness, inequality, and magic.” —VOYA, Starred Review

“…A paean to an emerging black legend.”—Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review 

Black Panther meets Nnedi Okorafor’s Akata Witch in Beasts Made of Night, the first book in an epic fantasy duology.

In the walled city of Kos, corrupt mages can magically call forth sin from a sinner in the form of sin-beasts—lethal creatures spawned from feelings of guilt. Taj is the most talented of the aki, young sin-eaters indentured by the mages to slay the sin-beasts. But Taj’s livelihood comes at a terrible cost. When he kills a sin-beast, a tattoo of the beast appears on his skin while the guilt of committing the sin appears on his mind. Most aki are driven mad by the process, but Taj is cocky and desperate to provide for his family.

When Taj is called to eat a sin of a member of the royal family, he’s suddenly thrust into the center of a dark conspiracy to destroy Kos. Now Taj must fight to save the princess that he loves—and his own life.

Debut author Tochi Onyebuchi delivers an unforgettable series opener that powerfully explores the true meaning of justice and guilt. Packed with dark magic and thrilling action, Beasts Made of Night is a gritty Nigerian-influenced fantasy perfect for fans of Paolo Bacigalupi and Nnedi Okorafor.

iBooks Most Anticipated YA Books of the Fall 
io9’s All the Science Fiction and Fantasy Books to Keep On Your Radar This Fall
BuzzFeed’s 22 YA Novels You’ll Want To Read From Cover To Cover This Fall
A 2017 BookExpo Buzz Book
A Junior Library Guild Selection 

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Writing for Other Media

In addition to novels, Tochi has written comics, video games, and screenplays. In this talk he’ll explore what lessons travel from one medium to another; conversely, how does one take full advantage of the specific medium one is writing in?

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Adaptation

ArrivalGone GirlThe Last of Us, all of these have their own source material elsewhere. What is the process by which a successful adaptation is achieved?

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Writing About Home

It wasn’t until his seventh book that Tochi felt truly confident enough to write about where he lived. What took so long? And what did it teach him, both about writing and about himself?
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Black Superman

For youth advocates

The power (and perils) of writing Black superheroes

Italics Newsletter

Tochi’s Writing

Tochi’s Hometown Bookstore | Order Signed Books!

Honors, Awards & Recognition

Alex Award Winner
New England Book Award Winner
World Fantasy Award Winner
Ignyte Award Winner
Connecticut Book Award for Fiction Winner
Dragon Award Finalist
Hugo Award Finalist
Nebula Award Finalist
Locus Award Finalist
New York Times Editors’ Choice Pick
ALA Award
AABMC Literary Award
NAACP Image Award Finalist for Best Outstanding Work of Literary Fiction
Goodreads Choice Awards Finalist

A Most Anticipated Pick for:
USA Today
Bustle
Buzzfeed
Goodreads
Nerdist
io9
WBUR
Polygon
The New Scientist

Media Kit

By clicking the link below you will be directed to a Google Docs Folder
where you can download author photos and cover images.

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