Oyeyemi wrote her first novel, The Icarus Girl, while still at school studying for her A-levels at Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School.
While studying social and political sciences at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge University, Oyeyemi saw two of her plays, Juniper’s Whitening and Victimese, performed by fellow students to critical acclaim and subsequently published by Methuen. In 2007 Bloomsbury published Oyeyemi’s second novel, The Opposite House, which is inspired by Cuban mythology. Her third novel, White is for Witching, described as having “roots in Henry James and Edgar Allan Poe”, was published by Picador in May 2009. A fourth novel, Mr Fox, was published by Picador in June 2011, and a fifth, Boy, Snow, Bird, in 2014.