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Esi Edugyan

Half-Blood Blues

Picador

2012 Fiction

As the Canadian-born daughter of Ghanaian immigrants, Esi Edugyan grew up between worlds. “Loyalties were always mixed,” she said, “and the world inside the walls of my home was significantly different from the world beyond it.”

Edugyan was raised in Calgary and graduated from the University of Victoria and Johns Hopkins University. Her work has appeared in several anthologies, including Best New American Voices 2003 and Revival: An Anthology of Black Canadian Writing (2006). Her debut novel, The Second Life of Samuel Tyne, was nominated for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award.

Edugyan has held fellowships in the United States, Scotland, Iceland, Hungary, Finland, Spain, and Belgium. While working as a writer-in-residence in Stuttgart, Germany, she found the inspiration for her second novel, Half-Blood Blues, a tale of African-American jazz musicians who flourished in Berlin during the cabaret heyday of the Weimar Republic and then found themselves endangered by the rise of the Third Reich.

Half-Blood Blues is the winner of the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize, Canada’s most prestigious literary award, and the 2012 Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize. The novel was short-listed for the Man Booker Prize, the Orange Prize for Fiction, and the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction. 

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Blog Posts about Esi Edugyan

Esi Edugyan Nominated For IMPAC Dublin Prize

                      What a year for Esi Edugyan! After winning multiple awards for her stunning novel Half Blood Blues, she has recently been nominated for the IMPAC Dublin Prize. Nominees are selected by librarians in 120 cities, and the most promising of the authors will move to the short list, announced April 9, 2013. The winner will be announced on June 6, 2013. Along with a prize of about $160,000 (Canadian), the winner will be able to take their place alongside great writers... Read More →

Five Books You Should Read First In 2013

With a new year comes new reading lists. We at Anisfield-Wolf rounded up some of the new and not-so-new books we'd like to read over the next few weeks. If this proves popular, we'll keep adding books here as suggestions and have a discussion about what we've enjoyed over on our Facebook page.  Ayaan Hirsi Ali - Infidel Stephen L. Carter - The Emperor of Ocean Park Jill Lepore - The Mansion of Happiness August Wilson - Fences  Esi Edugyan - The Second Life of Samuel Tyne            Read More →

The Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards - Told Through Tweets

[View the story "77th Annual Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards Ceremony" on Storify]   Read More →

Listen As Esi Edugyan, David Livingstone Smith, David W. Blight And Arnold Rampersad Discuss Race And Diversity

We won't spend too much time on an introduction today; let's get right to the meaty stuff. Recently, our 2012 winners all had a chance to speak with Dred-Scott Keyes on the Public Radio Exchange to discuss their books and the deeper themes within. Take a listen to David W. Blight and Esi Edugyan in part one, and David Livingstone Smith and Arnold Rampersad in part two: Read More →

Esi Edugyan Is Having The Year Of Her Life

2012 winner Esi Edugyan is having the year of her life. Her second novel, Half-Blood Blues, is racking up award after award, giving the new mom (her daughter is less than a year old) many things to be grateful about.  Winner of the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize, 2012 Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize       Shortlisted for the 2011 Man Booker Prize   Shortlisted for the 2012 Orange Prize for Fiction   Shortlisted for the 2012 Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction   Finalist for the 2011 Governor General's Award for... Read More →

VIDEO: Esi Edugyan: "I've Wanted To Be A Writer Since I Was 13"

Often writers feel that urge to put their thoughts out in the world as young children. 2012 Anisfield-Wolf winner Esi Edugyan felt the bug as a pre-teen after she drafted a piece of poetry that was so good, her mother insisted she must have copied it from a book. From then on, being a writer was an ultimate goal of a young Ms. Edugyan. Check out this short video presentation put together for the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize and learn more about her thoughts on the writing process, whether she'll ever use social media to converse with fans... Read More →

5 Things To Know About Esi Edugyan, 2012 Winner For Fiction

We’ll be spending this week exploring the lives and works of the 2012 Anisfield-Wolf Award winners. Today we're recognizing Esi Edugyan, who won the 2012 Anisfield-Wolf Award for Half-Blood Blues.  She counts Leo Tolstoy and Alice Munro among her favorite writers of all time: "Tolstoy has given me the most, year after year, without fail. I return to him for his scope, his sense of human destiny, the vastness of his vision. Alice Munro, for the precision of her writing, the sharp corners she can turn between sentences. There are many... Read More →

Meet Our 2012 Winners!

“The 2012 Anisfield-Wolf winners reflect the complexity of the issues of race and cultural diversity in our world,” said Henry Louis Gates Jr., the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African-American Research at Harvard University, who serves as jury chair. “These books and the people who created them help us gain a deeper understanding of the need to respect both the humanity and individuality of one other.” Our 2012 winners are (click on any of the photos to read more... Read More →
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