Chinua Achebe's story "Vengeful Creditor" first appeared in 1971 in the inaugural issue of Okike: A Nigerian Journal of New Writing, a magazine that Achebe founded, and it was later reprinted in his collection of stories, Girls at War, and Other Stories. The story focuses on the gap between the wealthy and the poor in the tumultuous environment of a haphazardly modernizing African country. The overt political issue at stake is the government's institution of free primary education for children, a policy the well-to-do Emenikes resent because it means they will have difficulty keeping their servants. In order to obtain a nurse for their baby, the Emenikes promise an impovenshed girl that she will eventually be able to go to school—her only chance at obtaining a better life for herself. As it becomes clear that the Emenikes are not going to make good on their promise, the young servant, Veronica, becomes increasingly resentful and acts out her frustration on the Emenikes and their child.
Achebe is known primarily as a novelist, and his 1958 novel Things Fall Apart is considered one of literature's most important African novels. He has written relatively few short stories in his career, but his collection Girls at War, and Other Stories like his novels, has received overwhelming positive reviews from critics. "Vengeful Creditor" in particular is noted for its satirical qualities in depicting "women and their aspirations, blighted ... by the society and the circumstances that surround them,'' according to C. L. Innes in her book Chinua Achebe.