The Thief and the Patriot

Fiction - Historical - Event/Era
212 Pages
Reviewed on 03/12/2024
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Author Biography

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 live in 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.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

The Thief and the Patriot is a work of fiction in the political thriller, interpersonal drama, and sociocultural writing subgenres. It is best suited to the general adult reading audience. Penned by author Chikodi Anunobi, this fascinating novel delves into the intricate world of Nigerian politics and corruption, focusing on Bona Angila, a prominent lawyer entangled in a web of deceit and power struggles. As Angila's empire faces imminent collapse, he finds himself reluctantly drawn into the realm of the Patriots, a clandestine group manipulating divisions for their gain. Meanwhile, The People's Congress advocates for a unified Nigeria. Angila's dilemma intensifies as he navigates between these opposing forces, knowing that his revelations could endanger his family.

Author Chikodi Anunobi has crafted a work with skilled and emotive narration techniques that probe all the complexities of cultural diversity versus the imperative of national unity, offering a compelling exploration of Nigeria's political landscape and its place in the global community. More than this, Anunobi is able to center the tale on Bona Angila with conviction and strong character presentation, presenting an intimate psychological portrait that serves as a metaphor for the wider forces at play. Through Angila's journey, the novel prompts reflection on the challenges of reconciling diverse interests to forge a cohesive national identity amidst political turmoil. Every moment is well-paced and realized to give readers the closest possible insight into the complex world on display. Overall, I would certainly recommend The Thief and the Patriot for fans of intense and well-penned political thrillers everywhere.

Doreen Chombu

The Thief and the Patriot by Chikodi Anunobi is a captivating story about Bonaventure (Bona) Angila, a man who grows up in a corrupt system in Nigeria that takes advantage of tribal divisions and relies on bribes. He is ambitious and enjoys having power and control. Some people view him as a skilled businessman who supports his tribesmen, while others see him as an opportunist who has made lots of money for himself and his associates through illegal dealings. Bona finds himself in a dangerous situation, due to the unstable political climate in Nigeria, which has experienced numerous coups and the emergence of groups such as The People's Congress, who aim to unite the country. His freedom and life are at risk, and he wonders if he will ever be able to redeem himself before it's too late.

The Thief and the Patriot is an engaging and thought-provoking book that asks you to contemplate the various illegalities that often go unpunished because they benefit a specific group of people. The character of Bona is complex and raises questions about what is morally right for those in power. His desire to succeed and help his community appears just until you realize that his methods are discriminatory and lead to the loss of opportunities for others. The book perfectly captures his conflicting thoughts, as seen in the scene where he has a nightmare about a boy who is more deserving of a position into which Bona had bribed his way. Chikodi Anunobi addresses social issues like tribalism, corruption, and religious differences, raising questions and suggesting solutions. This is excellent work, and I would love to read more from this author. His engaging writing and inclusion of vital life lessons make this story unforgettable.

Luwi Nyakansaila

Bona is a young boy from Nigeria who comes from a humble family. He sees firsthand the advantages that having money and connections can bring when his wealthy uncle becomes the chief of their ancestral hometown instead of his father, who is the rightful heir. Bona uses this same tactic to become the senior prefect at his school, and later, the president of the student union in law school for three consecutive terms. Through this, he gains a taste of power and hones his skills in bribery. Bona takes his schemes to a national level when he joins the Standard Law Firm and meets like-minded colleagues. Eventually, he catches the attention of the Patriots, a transnational group of powerful people who thrive on tribal divisions. Bona becomes invisible and feared while working with the most influential people, but unfortunately, everything that goes up must come down. Bona is betrayed, and the empire he built starts to fall. Follow the rise and fall of Bona in The Thief and the Patriot by Chikodi Anunobi.

The Thief and the Patriot is an intriguing tale that challenges the mind and stirs emotions. This educative story teaches readers about the dangers of corruption and tribalism which can cause division within a country and its people. The book not only portrays dark themes but also introduces readers to Nigerian culture and traditions. I loved that the author incorporated the Pidgin language in the narrative, which added authenticity to the characters and setting, making the story more immersive and rich in cultural details. Chikodi Anunobi also blends real historical events into the tale, giving it a realistic touch that many readers will appreciate. Finally, Bona is relatable to everyone. He has his flaws, and his internal struggles are familiar problems that many face. 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.

Frank Mutuma

In The Thief and the Patriot by Chikodi Anunobi, Bonaventure was born into privilege. His grandfather was a chief, a position Bona hoped to one day inherit since his father was the firstborn son. But the position was passed on to his uncle due to bribery. In high school, when Bona wanted to become the senior prefect, he had to bribe Mr. Gordon, who had the principal's ear. This is when he realizes how the system works, the advantages of being in power, and the importance of having a 'godfather' to teach you the ropes. Bona proceeds on to university, where he studies law. After university, he joins Standard Law as a junior attorney. Was the position offered because of his friend Fibi? It is at Standard Law that Bona is introduced to more serious crime and corruption that involve very powerful players. How will things turn out for Bona?

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. I loved the many themes covered such as culture and diversity, and how they influence the nation-building process in this setting where there are many tribes with different ideas and views in the same country. Chikodi vividly captured all the events, and the systematic flow of the plot ensured no room for confusion for the reader, adding to the overall beauty of the book. This was a very thought-provoking story on governance and corruption, and I can't wait to read something else by Chikodi.

Mimie Odigwe

Chikodi Anunobi’s The Thief and the Patriot explores the relationship between tribal culture and political corruption in Nigeria. It begins with a man named Bonaventure, who grew up believing that power makes a man great and that achieving this height of greatness is determined by who you know and how many palms you can grease along the way. He becomes a lawyer and quickly climbs the ladder of riches and high positions, all of which he achieves through unethical means. Here, he is introduced to a life of fraud, stealing, and affluence, supported by corrupt government officials. However, no evil deed goes unpunished, and he is betrayed and jailed by the people who once supported him.

In a world where the pursuit of power and money is based on connections, through affiliations or bribery, Chikodi Anunobi seeks to enlighten readers. Though some good people and politicians have given their lives for the sake of the country, the novel aims to expose the political corruption, tribal disunity, and cultural differences that threaten to destroy it. In this captivating story, the author teaches us that a country with diverse cultural backgrounds and beliefs can only thrive if unity and cultural integration are practiced. From Nigeria’s amalgamation in 1914, when different tribes were brought together under one colonial master, to her independence in 1960, leaders and top politicians continued to practice nepotism until today. Tribal disunity and corruption have been around for generations. Anunobi emphasizes the importance of a united nation where diverse cultures are respected while love for one another is paramount. The Thief and the Patriot is a very satisfying and educational novel, with an expertly delivered storyline and engaging dialogue.