Tanzanian writer Nahida Esmail was born and raised in Dar es Salam. Nahida is an award-winning author of four young adult novels and ten children’s picture books, three of which have been translated into Swahili and one translated into Maa, the language of the Maasai. She has also written two textbooks for the secondary school level. Her four young adult novels, Living in the Shade, Lesslie the City Maasai, Detectives of Shangani, and Living in the Shade: Aiming for the Summit have all received CODE’s Burt Award for African Literature. In 2015, she was honoured with the Tanzania Women’s Achievement Award in the education category.

Nahida’s writing journey began when she went in search of books for her daughter but was disappointed at the lack of books written by and for Tanzanians, and so she decided to write them. For Nahida, the age-old tradition of storytelling is her way of sharing important messages with young people, and she believes that it is within great stories that we can catch a glimpse of ourselves and know that we are not alone. Nahida’s goal is to write a book in every genre and to provide good books for young people with the hope that young Tanzanians will become strong readers and great leaders.

Nahida graduated from Goldsmiths College, University of London, with a BSc in Psychology and she completed a Masters in Child Development with Early Childhood Education at the Institute of Education, University of London. Nahida currently lives in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and is a part-time writer and a full-time mother of two girls. She enjoys reading, cycling, mountain climbing, photography, and traveling. She has lived in London, UK; Cairo, Egypt; and Durban, South Africa, and she continues to explore the world with her children.

Main Menu