An extraordinary literary debut about a Nigerian boy's secret intersex identity and his desire to live as a girl.
Oto leaves for boarding school with one plan: excel and escape his cruel home. Falling in love with his roommate was certainly not on the agenda, but fear and shame force him to hide his love and true self.
Back home, weighed down by the expectations of their wealthy and powerful family, the love of Oto's twin sister wavers and, as their world begins to crumble around them, Oto must make drastic choices that will alter the family's lives for ever.
Richly imagined with art, proverbs and folk tales, this moving and modern novel follows Oto through life at home and at boarding school in Nigeria, through the heartbreak of living as a boy despite their profound belief they are a girl, and through a hunger for freedom that only a new life in the United States can offer.
An Ordinary Wonder is a powerful coming-of-age story that explores complex desires as well as challenges of family, identity, gender, and culture, and what it means to feel whole.
Buki Papillon was born in Nigeria, the oldest of six. After studying law at Hull University in the UK, she completed an MFA in Creative Writing at Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She has received several fellowships and awards for her writing and is an alumnus of Key West Literary, Vermont Studio Centre and Vona Voices residencies and workshops. Her work was published in Post Road Magazine and the Del Sol Review. She has in the past been a travel adviser, events host and chef. Buki currently lives in Boston, where she is resigned to finding inspiration in the long winters.