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The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois

Honoree Fanonne Jeffers

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HARPER360
01 September 2021
A TOP TEN NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER  AN OPRAH BOOK CLUB PICK  ONE OF BARACK OBAMA'S FAVOURITE BOOKS OF THE YEAR

'Astonishing... It is something so remarkable I'm not sure we collectively ever even dreamed it... A great work infused with love and honesty' Alice Walker, author of The Color Purple

'The kind of book that comes around only once a decade...Simply magnificent' Washington Post

'Epic... It just consumed me' Oprah Winfrey, Oprah Book Club    A breath-taking debut novel that chronicles the journey of generations of one American family, from the centuries of the colonial slave trade to our own tumultuous era, by prize-winning poet Honoree Fanonne Jeffers

The great scholar, W.E.B. Du Bois, once wrote about the Problem of race in America, and what he called 'Double Consciousness,' a sensitivity that every African American possesses in order to survive. Since childhood, Ailey Pearl Garfield has understood Du Bois's words all too well.

Ailey grows up in the north in the City but spends summers in the small Georgia town of Chicasetta. From an early age, she fights a battle for belonging made all the more difficult by a hovering trauma, as well as the whispers of women - her mother, her sister and a maternal line reaching back two centuries - that urge her to succeed in their stead.

Ailey embarks on a journey through her family's past, uncovering the shocking tales of generations of ancestors - Indigenous, Black, and white - in the deep South. In doing so she must learn to embrace her full heritage, a legacy of oppression and resistance, bondage and independence, cruelty and resilience that is the story - and the song - of America itself.

With all the dazzling force of Yaa Gyasi's Homegoing and Jesmyn Ward's Sing, Unburied, Sing, The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois is set to be one of the most talked about books of the year.

* LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FOR FICTION
* SHORTLISTED FOR THE CENTER FOR FICTION FIRST NOVEL PRIZE
* LONGLISTED FOR THE ASPEN LITERARY PRIZE

New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year * Time 10 Best Books of the Year * Washington Post 10 Best Books of the Year * People 10 Best Books of the Year * Booklist 10 Best First Novels of the Year
By:  
Imprint:   HARPER360
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm,  Spine: 49mm
Weight:   1.050kg
ISBN:   9780008516482
ISBN 10:   0008516480
Pages:   816
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Honoree Fanonne Jeffers is a fiction writer, poet, and essayist. She is the author of five poetry collections, including The Age of Phillis, which won the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work in Poetry, was longlisted for a National Book Award, and was a finalist for the PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Poetry. She was a contributor to The Fire This Time, edited by Jesmyn Ward, and has been published in the Kenyon Review, the Iowa Review, and other literary magazines. Jeffers was elected into the American Antiquarian Society, whose members include fourteen US presidents, and is a critic at large for the Kenyon Review. She teaches creative writing and literature at the University of Oklahoma.

Reviews for The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois

'Astonishing...so remarkable I'm not sure we collectively ever even dreamed it' Alice Walker, author of The Colour Purple, from her blog Alice Walker's Garden 'Whatever must be said to get you to heft this daunting debut novel by Honoree Fanonne Jeffers, I'll say, because The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois is the kind of book that comes around only once a decade ... With the depth of its intelligence and the breadth of its vision, Love Songs is simply magnificent' Washington Post 'Triumphant... Quite simply the best book that I have read in a very, very long time... An epic tale of adventure that brings to mind characters you never forget: Meg Murry in A Wrinkle in Time, Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird, Huckleberry Finn... Just as Toni Morrison did in Beloved, Jeffers uses fiction to fill in the gaping blanks of those who have been rendered nameless and therefore storyless... A sweeping, masterly debut' New York Times 'Just as brilliant as it is necessary, just as intimate as it is expansive. An outstanding portrait of an American family and in turn, an outstanding portrait of America' Angie Thomas, author of The Hate U Give 'It's awe-inspiring. Massive, unflagging, gripping, gorgeous. A sweeping family saga that is also history at its most intimate and vital. I will be recommending it everyone I know. Unforgettable' Stef Penney, author of The Tenderness of Wolves 'If you read one book this year, choose this one ... One of America's finest poets has announced herself as a storyteller of the highest magnitude. Absolutely brilliant' Dolen Perkins-Valdez, author of Wench 'Beautiful ... In Jeffers' deft hands, the story of race and love in America becomes the Great American Novel' Jacqueline Woodson, author of Red at the Bone


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