Kenyan-Canadian Author, D. Nandi Odhiambo Wins Prestigious Hawaiian Literary Prize

Kenyan-Canadian author, D. Nandi Odhiambo has been named as one of two winners of this year’s Elliot Cades Award for Literature.

Odhiambo who is an assistant professor of English at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa was named the recipient of the established-writer prize, while his co-award winner Jean Toyama is recognized as an emerging artist.

Odhiambo was born in Nairobi, Kenya and moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, in 1977. He has a PhD in English Literature from the University of Hawaii, Manoa, an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and a B.A. in Classics from McGill University.

He is the author of four novels, The Reverend’s Apprentice, Kipligat’s Chance, diss/ed banded nations and most recently, Smells Like Stars (Book*hug 2018).

The award run by the Hawaii Literary Arts Council is considered to be Hawaii’s most prestigious literary honor recognizes an established writer and an emerging writer for their contributions to Hawaiian literature.

Odhiambo and Toyama will receive their prizes at a ceremony on May 4 at the Hawaii Book & Music Festival. They will each receive a cash award. The amount fluctuates each year, but has been a minimum of $1,000 U.S. ($1,332.50 Cdn) since the prize’s inception.

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