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Fourth Estate, the literary imprint of HarperCollins UK, is to publish a new non-fiction work by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Entitled Notes on Grief, it is described as ‘a work of meditation, remembrance, and hope, written in the wake of her father’s death’. Nicholas Pearson, Editorial Director at 4th Estate acquired UK and Commonwealth rights, excluding Canada, from Sarah Chalfant at The Wylie Agency.
The book grew out of an essay Adichie wrote that originally appeared in The New Yorker. Last summer, as the COVID-19 pandemic raged around the world and kept Adichie’s family members separated from one another, Adichie’s father succumbed unexpectedly to complications of kidney failure.
Fourth Estate says: ‘In Notes on Grief, Adichie shares how this loss shook her to her core. She writes about being one of the millions of people grieving, about the familial and cultural dimensions of grief, and also about the loneliness and anger that accompany it. Adichie weaves together her own experience of her father’s death with threads of his life story —from his survival of the Biafran War, through a long career as a statistics professor, into the days of the pandemic, during which he’d stay connected to his children and grandchildren over video chats from the family home in Abba, Nigeria. As Adichie wrestles with his passing, she recalls her father as a remarkable man of kindness and charm, and a fierce supporter of his youngest daughter.’
Pearson says: ‘Notes on Grief is a moving tribute to the father Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie loved fiercely and whose sudden death devastated her. It will be treasured by readers for the light it sheds on the pain of navigating the loss of someone we love.’
Fourth Estate will publish the title on 11 May 2021.