Book for July 2015
Group 2
Africa39 is a collaborative project initiated by the Hay Festival in partnership with Rainbow Book Club, celebrating Port Harcourt: UNESCO World Book Capital 2014 by identifying 39 of the most promising writers under the age of 40 with the potential and talent to define trends in the development of literature from Sub-Saharan Africa and the diaspora. Africa39 follows the success of two previous Hay Festival initiatives linked to World Book Capital cities, Bogotá39 (2007) and Beirut39 (2009).

The judges for Africa39 were Margaret Busby, Osonye Tess Onwueme and Elechi Amadi, selecting from submissions researched by Binyavanga Wainaina. The writers' names were announced at the London Book Fair on 8 April 2014. An anthology entitled Africa39: New Writing from Africa South of the Sahara, featuring work by the 39 writers was published by Bloomsbury in October 2014, edited by Ellah Allfrey and with a preface by Wole Soyinka.
About the Author
Ellah Wakatama Allfrey
Ellah Wakatama Allfrey (born 16 September 1966) is a Zimbabwe-born editor and literary critic. She is a former Deputy Editor of Granta (2009–13) and former Senior Editor at Jonathan Cape, Random House. She sits on the board of the Writers' Centre Norwich, has been Deputy Chair of the Council of the Caine Prize for African Writing since 2011 and is a patron of the new Etisalat Prize for Literature. She was the 2013 Chair of the Commonwealth Writers' Prize.

Allfrey's journalism has appeared in The Telegraph, The Guardian and The Observer and she is a regular contributor to the book pages of NPR. Her broadcasting includes a series of author interviews for and she contributes regularly to NPR's All Things Considered and BBC Radio 4's Saturday Review. In 2011 Allfrey was on the judging panel of both the David Cohen Prize and the Caine Prize. In 2012 she was chair of the fiction panel for the OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature. Her introduction to Woman of the Aeroplanes by Kojo Laing (Heinemann African Writers Series) was published in 2012. She edited the anthology Africa39: New Writing from Africa South of the Sahara (2014), showcasing the writers in the Africa39 initiative. She has been announced as a judge of the Man Booker Prize for 2015.

A Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts, Allfrey was awarded an OBE in 2011 for services to the publishing industry.