Segu
Maryse Condé

Book cover image

Narrated By: Debra Michaels

Duration: 18 hours and 44 minutes

What to expect

Brought to you by Penguin.

Winner of the Alternative Nobel Prize for Literature 2018

The bestselling epic novel of family, treachery, rivalry, religious fervour and the turbulent fate of a royal African dynasty

It is 1797 and the African kingdom of Segu, born of blood and violence, is at the height of its power. Yet Dousika Traore, the king's most trusted advisor, feels nothing but dread. Change is coming. From the East, a new religion, Islam. From the West, the slave trade. These forces will tear his country, his village and the lives of his beloved sons apart, in Maryse Condé's glittering epic.

'Maryse Condé is an extraordinary storyteller who brings the history of an African kingdom alive as vividly as if it existed today. . . This is a great novel: unputdownable and unforgettable' Bernardine Evaristo

'Rich and colorful and glorious. It sprawls over continents and centuries to find its way into the reader's heart' - Maya Angelou

'A stunning reaffirmation of Africa and its peoples... It's a starburst' - John A. Williams


© Maryse Condé 1984 (P) Penguin Audio 2021

Genre

Historical fiction, African history

Listen to a sample

Condé's story is rich and colorful and glorious. It sprawls over continents and centuries to find its way into the reader's heart

Maya Angelou

A stunning reaffirmation of Africa and its peoples... It's a starburst

John A. Williams

The grand queen, the empress, of Caribbean literature

Guardian

Maryse Condé is an extraordinary storyteller who brings the history of an African kingdom alive as vividly as if it existed today. Suspenseful, shocking, panoramic and hugely engrossing, the novel explores the politics and impact of external and domestic forces on nineteenth century west Africa through wonderfully realised characters and their complicated relationships. This is a great novel: unputdownable and unforgettable

Bernardine Evaristo

If there were no tools on a desert island, I would take Segu by Maryse Condé. This generational family saga has so many layers that I can read and reread it, in between figuring out how to build a raft

Time Out

Richly textured and detailed, this narrative, alternating between the lives of various characters, illuminates magnificently a little known historical period. Virtually every page glitters with nuggets of cultural fascination

Los Angeles Times

A wondrous novel about a period of African history few other writers have addressed