Cheluchi Onyemelukwe’s The Son of the House has won the 2021 edition of the Nigeria Prize for Literature, sponsored by Nigeria LNG Limited and worth $100, 000 to the winner.
Onyemelukwe’s book emerged ahead of Abi Dare (The Girl with the Louding Voice) and Obinna Udenwe (Colours of Hatred) the other two in the shortlist to emerge winner.
The book competed against 201 other entries received for the 2021 competition, focussed on Prose Fiction.
The announcement was made at the award night in Lagos by The Advisory Board for the prize led by Emeritus Professor Akachi Adimora-Ezeigbo.
The Son of the House, according to the judges for the prize, is a profoundly unconventional novel that portrays the lives of two women in different worlds whose paths crossed during captivity. But they soon realised their path had earlier crossed at various points. The stories of Nwabulu, a one-time housemaid and now a successful fashion designer, and Julie, an educated woman who lived through tricks, deceits, and manipulations, are told through a mosaic plot structure against the backdrop of modernity and traditional patriarchy, poverty, and neglect.