Sulaiman Addonia

Genres: Fiction | Novel

Sulaiman Addonia is an Eritrean-Ethiopian-British novelist. He spent his early life in a refugee camp in Sudan, and his early teens in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. He arrived in London as an underage unaccompanied refugee without a word of English and went on to earn an MA in Development Studies from SOAS and a BSc in Economics from UCL. His first novel, The Consequences of Love (Chatto & Windus, 2008), was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize and was translated into more than 20 languages. His second novel, Silence is My Mother Tongue (Indigo Press, 2019; Graywolf, 2020), was a Finalist for the Lambda Literary Awards 2021, the Firecracker (CLMP) Awards, the inaugural African Literary Award from The Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) in San Francisco, and longlisted for the 2019 Orwell Prize for Fiction. His essays appear in LitHub, Granta, Freeman’s, The New York Times, De Standaard and Passa Porta. He is a contributor to Tales of Two Planets (Penguin, 2020) and *Addis Ababa Noir *(Akashic Books, 2020). Sulaiman currently lives in Brussels where he founded the Creative Writing Academy for Refugees & Asylum Seekers and the Asmara-Addis Literary Festival In Exile (AALFIE), selected in 2022 as one of the top 40 literary festivals in the world. In 2021 he was awarded Belgium’s Golden Afro Artistic Award for Literature and in 2022 he was elected as a Fellow of Royal Society of Literature (RSL).elected as a Fellow of Royal Society of Literature (RSL). His latest novel The Seers is published by Prototype in June 2024.


Sulaiman Addonia’s attendance at West Cork Literary Festival is supported by Flanders Literature as part of their Flip Through Flanders programme.


©Alexander Meeus
Arts Council - funding literature
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Wild Atlantic Way
CCC Library & Arts Service
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Pure Cork
Creative Places West Cork Islands
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Maritime Hotel