Conville & Walsh literary agency is delighted to announce that Tom Burgis has won the top £10,000 grant in this year’s Royal Society of Literature Jerwood Awards, for his book The Looting Machine. The prize is awarded annually to authors engaged on their first major commissioned works of non-fiction, with two other authors receiving £5,000 each.
As China’s formidable economy continues to grow rapidly so does its appetite for natural resources. An increasing proportion of these raw materials come from thousands of miles away, from the troubled soils and rocks of Africa. Despite the natural resource wealth of their continent, however, only a very small minority of Africans benefit – financially or otherwise. Much of the wealth generated by the new resource trade finds its way into the hands of mafia led groups, corrupt businessmen, government officials and giant multinational companies.
As the Financial Times’ former Lagos and Johannesburg correspondent, Tom Burgis has dedicated years to delving deep and unearthing shocking stories illustrating both the old and new systematic plundering of Africa’s natural wealth and to giving voice to the silent millions who gain little or no benefit despite living on this continent of riches.
The Looting Machine digs deeper than any studies on Africa’s resource curse have done before. Tom has spent prolonged periods in the Niger delta, Angola, South Africa and Guinea following shadowy oil barons, kicking over stones and revealing the cynical corruption of the multinational companies at the heart of the exploitation. In The Looting Machine Tom presents a thrilling tour of the underbelly of a continent whose supposed new dawn is tainted on an unimaginable scale.
The book is due to be delivered next year, and will be published by HarperCollins in 2015.
12 Dec 2013