News Brief

Nnedi Okorafor's New Novel 'Akata Warrior' Just Released Today—And a Third Is In the Works

Nigerian-American science fiction author Nnedi Okorafor's new novel, "Akata Warrior" is out now.

Nnedi Okorafor's talented use of the pen is the gift that keeps on giving.


The Nigerian-American sci-fi author's latest installment in the Akata series, Akata Warrior, just released today. Her 12th novel that was 6 years in the making combines real images of Nigeria with her original, fantasy world she creates. According to her website, "Akata Warrior is a compelling tale that mixes culture, fantasy, history and magic into a unique blend that will keep readers spellbound."

Read the summary below:

A year ago, Sunny Nwazue, a 12-year-old American born girl raised mostly in Nigeria, was inducted into the secret Leopard Society, began developing her magical powers, and, as if this weren't enough, was chosen to lead a dangerous mission to avert an apocalypse brought about by the terrifying masquerade, Ekwensu.Now, stronger, feistier and a bit older, Sunny is studying with her mentor Sugar Cream and unlocking the secrets of the living script in her strange Nsibidi book. Then a monster tries to drag her into a lake and this is only the beginning of her troubles. Eventually, Sunny must confront her destiny and with the support of her Leopard Society member friends, Orlu, Chichi, and Sasha, and of her spirit face Anyanwu, journey to the mysteries town of Osisi to fight a climactic battle to save humanity.

Okorafor also announced that as she wrote Akata Warrior, she compiled notes for a third book that will be included in the series.

Akata Warrior Amazon is available on and other major book retailers.

Music

Interview: Ranks ATM Makes ‘Substance Music’

South African hip-hop artist Ranks ATM on his latest EP 'Substance Music', working with Riky Rick and his crew African Trap Movement's new chapter.

Ranks ATM demands to be taken seriously. With every successive release, listeners are bound to pick up on both his personal and artistic growth. His latest EP, Substance Music, released towards the end of 2020, is an honest body of work that sees the artist divulge some aspects of his life while remaining playful and entertaining.

Young2unn, who produced a majority of the project, gave Ranks ATM beats that primarily consist of keys and strings cushioned by atmospheric pads and ethereal vocal samples panned for effect. The music is soulful enough for Ranks to tell his story and gritty enough to maintain his street aesthetic.

On Substance Music, the artist strikes the balance between playful banter and poignant expression of emotions. It's what makes his raps believable in general—he presents himself as a complete human who feels pain at times but also feels himself. Songs such as "Die For Me" and "How Could It Be" are laced with specific details that could have only been extracted from his life experiences, for instance, on the former, he raps, "You cheated on me with a gym freak, you did me dirty."

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