logo
Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
Tayari Jones
Tayari Jones was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia where she spent most of her childhood with the exception of the one year she and her family spent in Nigeria, West Africa. Although she has not lived in her hometown for over a decade, much of her writing centers on the urban south. "Although I... show more

Tayari Jones was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia where she spent most of her childhood with the exception of the one year she and her family spent in Nigeria, West Africa. Although she has not lived in her hometown for over a decade, much of her writing centers on the urban south. "Although I now live in the northeast," she explains, "my imagination lives in Atlanta."Her first novel, Leaving Atlanta, is a coming of age story set during the city's infamous child murders of 1979-81. Jones herself was in the fifth grade when thirty African American children were murdered from the neighborhoods near her home and school. When asked why she chose this subject matter for her first novel, she says, "This novel is my way of documenting a particular moment in history. It is a love letter to my generation and also an effort to remember my own childhood. To remind myself and my readers what it was like to been eleven and at the mercy of the world. And despite the obvious darkness of the time period, I also wanted to remember all that is sweet about girlhood, to recall all the moments that make a person smile and feel optimistic."Leaving Atlanta received many awards and accolades including the Hurston/Wright Award for Debut Fiction. It was named "Novel of the Year" by Atlanta Magazine, "Best Southern Novel of the Year," by Creative Loafing Atlanta. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and The Washington Post both listed it as one of the best of 2002. She has received fellowships from organizations including Illinois Arts Council, Bread Loaf Writers Conference, The Corporation of Yaddo, The MacDowell Colony, Arizona Commission on the Arts and Le Chateau de Lavigny.Her second novel, The Untelling, published in 2005, is the story of a family struggling to overcome the aftermath of a fatal car accident. When asked why she chose to focus on a particular family in this work after the sprawling historical subject matter of Leaving Atlanta, Tayari Jones explains, "The Untelling is a novel about personal history and individual and familial myth-making. These personal stories are what come together to determine the story of a community, the unoffical history of a neighborhood, of a city, of a nation." Upon the publication of The Untelling, Essence magazine called Jones, "a writer to watch." The Atlanta Journal Constitution proclaims Jones to be "one of the best writers of her generation." In 2005, The Southern Regional council and the University of Georgia Libraries awarded The Untelling with the Lillian C. Smith Award for New Voices.The Silver Girl, her highly anticipated third novel, is forthcoming from Algonquin Books. An excerpt has been published in Calaloo. Tayari Jones debuted the piece as a headline reader at the conference of the Associated Writers Conference in Atlanta. Tayari Jones is a graduate of Spelman College, The University of Iowa, and Arizona State University. She has taught at Prairie View A&M University, East Tennessee State University, The University of Illinois and George Washington University. Currently, she is an Assistant Professor in the MFA program at Rutgers-Newark University. She was recently named as the 2008 Collins Fellow by the United States Artists Foundation.
show less
Tayari Jones's Books
Recently added on shelves
Tayari Jones's readers
Share this Author
Community Reviews
Hol
Hol rated it 2 weeks ago
An American Marriage recently won the woman’s prize for fiction, a story surrounding a couple and what happens to their marriage when the man is put in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. The narrative is split into three, with the most time being given to the husband (Roy) and his wife (Celestia...
Obsidian Blue
Obsidian Blue rated it 5 months ago
Well I went into this expecting a compelling read. It was that at times. I think the biggest reason why I just didn't get into this story that much was that the story should have stayed between Roy and Celestial. Adding Andre actually took away from both of them. And having the narrative go to their...
Chris' Fish Place
Chris' Fish Place rated it 11 months ago
This is a review of the audio edition and deals with an issue that may only apply to the audio edition. There are times when I think an audio book is, in fact, superior, to the written form. For instance, Lincoln at the Bardo. If I had read that, having brought it thinking it was...
Thewanderingjew
Thewanderingjew rated it 1 year ago
An American Marriage: A novel, Tayari Jones, author; Sean Crisdon, Elsa Davis, narrators Three friends are caught up in a love triangle that threatens to tear them apart. Andre Maurice Tucker introduces Celestial Gloriana Davenport to Roy Othaniel Hamilton Jr. Andre and Celestial are neighbors livin...
debbiekrenzer
debbiekrenzer rated it 1 year ago
This was a dark, beautiful story. Dark due to the subject matter and beautiful due to the author's writing and the way she wrote about this great tragedy. While the story is fiction, the subject matter is not.A happily married couple and their best friends' lives are changed forever due to the wrong...
see community reviews
Need help?