Sassine was an expatriate African writer in France after leaving Guinea when it received independence under Sékou Touré. As a novelist he wrote of marginalized characters, but he became more optimistic on Toure's death. His novel Le jeune homme de sable has been regarded as among the best twentieth century African novels Few of his works have been translated into English, but Wirriyamu was published in an English translation in 1980. As an editor he remained critical of Toure as chief editor for the satirical Le Lynx paper. Some of Sassine's works have been translated into English, Spanish, and Russian.