Here Again Now
‘A beautiful exploration of grief and family, written in exquisite prose and told with compassion and tenderness.’ Brit Bennett, author of The Vanishing Half
‘Tender and honest, pulsing with love. Nzelu is the future of Black British writing.’ Derek Owusu, author of That Reminds Me
From award-winning author Okechukwu Nzelu comes a spellbinding literary novel that asks, how do you move forward when the past keeps pulling you back?
Achike Okoro feels like his life is coming together at last. His top-floor flat in Peckham is as close to home as he can imagine and after years of hard work, he’s about to get his break as an actor. He’s even persuaded his father, Chibuike, to move in with him, grateful to offer the man who raised him as a single parent a home of his own.
Between filming trips, Achike is snatching a few days in London with Ekene, his best friend of twenty years, the person who makes him feel whole. Achike can put the terrible things that happened behind him at last; everything is going to be alright. Maybe even better.
But after a magical night, when Achike and Ekene come within a hair’s breadth of admitting their feelings for each other, a devastating event rips all three men apart. In the aftermath, it is Ekene and Chibuike who must try to rebuild. And although they have never truly understood each other, grief may bring them both the peace and happiness they’ve been searching for…
A heartbreaking and immensely uplifting novel about lovers, fathers and sons. If you love The Vanishing Half, Shuggie Bain or Moonlight then you’ll adore this this incredibly moving book that shows the power of family – both the one into which we are born and those we choose for ourselves.
What readers are saying about Here Again Now:
‘A deeply intimate novel. Nzelu’s incisive style probes beneath his characters’ layers to expose vulnerability, joy, and love… Here Again Now is a revelation.’ Courttia Newland
‘I loved these heartbreaking characters, their flaws were never glossed over in Nzelu’s work, and their humanity shines out all the brighter for that. I cannot recommend this novel enough.’ Paterson Joseph
‘Okechukwu Nzelu is truly coming into his power as a novelist. It’s a beautiful and memorable book. Watch him soar.’ Niven Govinden
‘WOW, Nzelu is a BEAUTIFUL writer. A truly stunning love story. Heavy themes captured with grace and lightness. Tender, erotic, a total pleasure to read. Pre-order and be smug when it wins all the awards.’ Daisy Buchanan
‘His most assured, daring work. Telling a riveting and heartbreaking tale… A gloriously moving book which willsurely collect every award going.’ Harper’s Bazaar
‘A novel of great tenderness and understanding. Nzelu’s words feel both wise and fresh on the page.’ Elizabeth Day
‘An elegiac take on the unpredictabilities of the heart and a love that survives loss.’ Paul Mendez
‘A book so beautiful, it makes your heart ache on every page. Utterly brilliant, I loved it.’ Julie Owen Moylan
‘One to watch next year.’ Stylist
‘A powerful and heartbreaking novel; Okechukwu Nzelu is a vital voice.’ Andrew McMillan
‘Nzelu confirms his place as one of the most exciting and versatile writers of his generation.’ Angela Chadwick
‘A transgenerational story of grief as tender, potent and nimble as love.’ Kit Fan
A beautiful exploration of grief and family. Through exquisite prose, Okechukwu Nzelu delves into the lives of the complicated men at the centre of this story with compassion and tenderness. A lyrical and insightful novel. -- Brit Bennett, author of The Vanishing Half Here Again Now is a novel of great tenderness and understanding. Okechukwu Nzelu's words feel both wise and fresh on the page. -- Elizabeth Day A truly stunning love story. Heavy themes captured with grace and lightness. Tender, erotic, a total pleasure to read. Preorder and be smug when it wins all the awards. -- Daisy Buchanan One to watch next year * Stylist * A deeply intimate novel. Nzelu's incisive style probes beneath his characters' layers to expose vulnerability, joy, and love. This is a work of aching possibilities, unearthed warmth between distant bodies, the blurred limits that masculinity sometimes affords. Such emotional truths can be troubling to witness, although rich with the weight of their honesty. Here Again Now is a revelation. -- Courttia Newland Nzelu has written a tender and probing book. I've not read anything like it and its impact will be far reaching. Baldwin-esque and honest, pulsing with love. I honestly believe Nzelu is the future of Black British writing -- Derek Owusu Here Again Now finds Okechukwu Nzelu truly coming into his power as a novelist. Through this deeply absorbing an devastating story navigating a complex father-son relationship, masculinity and the exquisite joy and pain of queer love, Nzelu writes with precision, style and emotional intelligence. It's a beautiful and memorable book. Watch him soar. -- Niven Govinden Here Again Now is a compelling, enchanting novel of love, grief, and healing. Written in sumptuous prose, and with formal flair, it is heartbreaking, redeeming, and utterly mesmerising -- Sean Hewitt Hooked me from the very beginning. There's such a great respect and dignity at play in this writing - we're never allowed to forget that the painful blunderings of inexpertly loving can lead us, almost in spite of ourselves, to the place we are supposed to be -- Jenn Ashworth Here Again Now is an affecting portrait of contemporary masculinity, exploring themes of love, loss and vulnerability in the most achingly-beautiful prose. With his second novel, Nzelu confirms his place as one of the most exciting and versatile writers of his generation. -- Angela Chadwick, author of XX A powerful and heartbreaking novel; it opens up new, important space in the queer canon. Okechukwu Nzelu is a vital voice -- Andrew McMillan Love has always been a stubborn twin of grief. In Here Again Now, Okechukwu Nzelu reinvents the grammar of time to tell a transgenerational story of grief as tender, potent and nimble as love. Through observant prose and skin-deep dialogues, Nzelu gives us unforgettable portraits of intimacy between friends and families, shaped and reshaped by origin, conflict, migration, responsibility and the yearning for change. -- Kit Fan This is a book so beautiful, it makes your heart ache on every page. A stunning exploration of love, grief and what it means to be a man. Utterly brilliant and I loved it -- Julie Owen Moylan Tender and touching; the writing is thoughtful and compelling. Perfectly captures the brevity of life and happiness, and how a missed opportunity doesn't have to be the end of everything - but should be grabbed anyway, just in case -- Justin Myers An affecting portrayal of love and grief . . . Here Again Now is devastating yet tender, heartbreaking yet hopeful -- Deepa Anappara Departing from the lighthearted humour of his debut, Nzelu's follow-up is a solemn, elegiac take on the unpredictabilities of the heart and the body, the vicissitudes of the ageing process, and the love that survives loss. -- Paul Mendez Nzelu's debut, The Private Joys of Nnenna Maloney, may have put him on the map, but his March follow up, Here Again Now, is arguably his most assured, daring work. Telling a riveting and heartbreaking tale of male friendship, missed opportunity and the bond between fathers and sons, this is a gloriously moving book which will surely collect every award going. * Harpers Bazaar * In Here Again Now, Nzelu brings verve and radiant detail * Guardian * Love in its many forms, the limitations of gender norms, art and addiction are just a handful of the themes explored . . . thought provoking . . . aims to shed a new light on emotional intimacy and queerness. * Big Issue * Nzelu is an insightful writer whose prose is deep and philosophical . . . plenty to admire and analyse * Irish Times * Like its central characters, Okechukwu Nzelu's second novel is thoughtful * New Statesman * Memorably intense . . . Nzelu circles and returns to key themes: love, grief, masculinity, fatherhood and shelter (both literal and metaphorical). . . it's heartbreakingly sad. * Daily Mail * Nzelu's novel is exactly what UK literary canon needs right now. Gripping, tender but sharp - and a story of a romance I've always wanted to see written in books -- Travis Alabanza This book is incredible because it focuses on relationships between a father and son and also on mental health, how our past traumas can manifest and interrupt our present and also how we can break cycles, rebuild and ultimately do better, be better. * Evening Standard * The powerful narrative is both domestic and deeply profound, and the themes of loss, fatherhood and gay love in a British-Nigerian world are enlightening and moving. -- Paterson Joseph * Daily Mail *
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