SULAIMAN ADDONIA s a British-Eritrean-Ethiopian novelist who fled Eritrea as a refugee in childhood. He spent his early life in a refugee camp in Sudan following the Om Hajar massacre in 1976, and in his early teens he lived and studied 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 debut 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 and Graywolf, 2020), was longlisted for the Orwell Prize for Fiction. His essays appear in LitHub, Granta, the New York Times, De Standaard, and Passa Porta. He is a contributor in the anthology Tales of Two Planets (Penguin, 2020, edited by John Freeman) and also Addis Ababa Noir (Akashic Books, 2020, edited by Maaza Mengiste). Sulaiman Addonia currently lives in Brussels where he has launched a creative writing academy for refugees and asylum seekers & the Asmara-Addis Literary Festival (In Exile.)


Literary Hub, The Wound of Multilingualism: On Surrendering the Languages of Home

Granta, In Search of Beauty: Blackness as a Poem in Saudi Arabia

Granta, Writing Like Degas Paints, shortlisted for the Brittle Paper Award for Essays & Think Pieces 2019, and listed in Brittle Paper's African Literary Digest: 101 Notable Pieces of 2018.

New York Times Magazine, How My Father Looked

Passa Porta, For Virginia Woolf

MsAfropolitan, The Sexless Life of My Mother

Brittle Paper, The Voices I Overcame to Write Silence is My Mother Tongue

Equal Times, Can a Brussels Art Project Help Refugees Alleviate the Burden of Time?

Al-Jazeera, For Refugees, Hope is Ever-Present in Europe

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