The Private Joys of Nnenna Maloney, the debut novel by Okechukwu Nzelu, is out now from Jonathan Ball Publishers.
How do you begin to find yourself when you only know half of who you are?
The Private Joys of Nnenna Maloney is a comic novel about Nnenna, a half-Nigerian teenager living in modern-day Manchester with her mother Joanie.
As Nnenna approaches womanhood she longs to connect with her Igbo-Nigerian culture. Her once close and tender relationship with her mother, Joanie, becomes strained as Nnenna begins to ask probing questions about her father, who Joanie refuses to discuss.
Nnenna is asking big questions of how to ‘be’ when she doesn’t know the whole of who she is. Meanwhile, Joanie wonders how to love when she has never truly been loved. Their lives are filled with a cast of characters asking similar questions about identity and belonging whilst grappling with the often hilarious encounters of everyday Manchester.
Okechukwu Nzelu brings us a funny and heartwarming story that covers the expanse of race, gender, class, family and redemption, with a fresh and distinctive new voice. Perfect for fans of Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams and Zadie Smith’s White Teeth.