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“The story of how I became one of the biggest crooks in Nigerian history would be less complicated had I grown up poor and fallen into a life of crime to escape poverty.” – The Thief and the Patriot

When Bona Angila, the high-powered lawyer and uber-wealthy posterchild of Nigerian corruption, becomes a victim of his own success and a system that he cleverly helped to shape and embolden, it seems nothing can stop the onrushing train of events that spiral out of control and threaten to dismantle the empire he created for himself, his family, his clients, and his tribal community. Not by choice, he’s initiated into a covert, transnational organization of kingmakers called the Patriots, which maintains power through divisiveness. Its opposition, The People’s Congress, envisions a new, cohesive face for Nigeria. Finding himself embroiled in the conflict, Bona becomes a risk to those whose secrets he keeps. Although, no stranger to narrow escapes, this time, he’s really trapped, with few friends in high places willing to help him elude professional death or worse, assassination.

If he exposes all he knows, a mysterious small man who holds the strings by which the Patriots dance and its member generals are ready and more than willing to make an example of him. Their hitmen know where to find Bona’s wife and children. From choir boy to con-man, from prince in line to a royal tribal throne to prison inmate, the betrayed betrayer faces shifting allegiances and tough choices about who to save and who or what to sacrifice. Maybe there’s redemption in death. Maybe there’s more in life.

The Thief and the Patriot explores the ease by which individual ethics and integrity collapse under the weight of burgeoning ambition at all cost, greed, and twisted alliances. The book tantalizingly unravels an issue larger than the protagonist: Is it possible to—and how do powerbrokers—bridge the widening abyss between the interests that continue to deepen the trend toward “cultural diversity,” the catch phrase of our times, and the need for unity through cultural integration that places Nigeria on a strong footing within its global community? If the greater good is such an elusive goal, is it worth the fight? Historically, Nigerian tribes ousted their colonial master, Great Britain. But Nigerian independence only supplanted one master with another. Innocent people are often caught in the crossfire between the struggle of dominant tribes to maintain individualism and gain control over the minor tribes. Daily, we read about these still-relevant issues.

About the Author

Chikodi Anunobi was born and raised in Nigeria. A graduate of the University of Washington, Seattle USA, he is a Data Analyst who, with his family, lives in the United States. He remains a student of political science and social philosophy. His first novel, Nri Warriors of Peace won the USA Best Books Award in the Multicultural Fiction category. His second novel, The Thief and the Patriot, explores the ease by which individual ethics and integrity collapse under the weight of burgeoning ambition at all cost, greed, and twisted alliances.

Praise for The Thief and the Patriot

The Thief and the Patriot by Chikodi Anunobi addresses many issues that bedevil governance on the African continent and not just in Nigeria. With a steady narration and well-developed, relatable characters, I was hooked from the first page to the last. 

Reviewed by Frank Mutuma for Readers’ Favorite

Choosing to walk a morally righteous path, even amid adversity or temptation, requires strength and conviction. It not only benefits the individual making the choice but also contributes to a more ethical and harmonious society. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for an engaging story filled with valuable lessons.

Reviewed by Luwi Nyakansaila for Readers’ Favorite

Chikodi Anunobi


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