Aya: Graphic Novel Series by Marguerite Abouet



I recently discovered the Aya graphic novel series by Marguerite Abouet and illustrated by her husband, Clément Oubrerie. Set in 1970's Côte d'Ivoire, the stories revolve around the everyday life of Aya, a sweet and humble girl. According to this Wikipedia entry, the books are one of very few postcolonial African fiction works that focus almost entirely on the middle class. Would you agree?

The Aya graphic novel series is available on Amazon (Aya of Yop City, Aya: Life in Yop City and Aya: Love in Yop City, including editions in Spanish). You can preview the books on Drawn & Quarterly. The animated film version of the series, Aya de Yopougon, comes out later this year.


Thank you Belinda Otas for my wonderful gift!


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4 thoughts on “Aya: Graphic Novel Series by Marguerite Abouet”

  1. Wow… how crazy?! Just last week I was traveling in Abidjan for work and bought the first three Aya de Yopougon books in the series (there were six for sale). I loved the insight into middle class, post colonial life in a neighborhood I was working in. I read the graphic novels in French; I’d be really interested to see how they capture the Ivoirian slang in English.
    I’m also so excited to see that a movie is coming out!
    This is my first time coming out of the woodwork on your blog 😉 I live and work in Dakar and love finding blogs that expose me to new facets of the African/”Afropolitan” perspective.

  2. Hi Kim, thanks for your coming out of the woodwork :). I didn’t realise they were 6 in the Aya series! I look forward to eventually checking them all out. Interesting point about the translation of slang – I’m always amused by how some sub-titles to Swahili in films don’t capture the full meaning of what’s been said.
    Thanks for reading the blog – I’d love to hear more about life in Dakar. That’s one city I really look forward to visiting.
    – Lulu

  3. I could be misinformed, but I think « Aya: Life in Yop City » and « Aya: Love in Yop City » collect all six separate volumes of the Aya series.

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