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January 23, 2018

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Adults : About the Book & Author

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About the Book & the Author

About the Book:

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi (Vintage, 2017)

Homegoing follows the parallel paths of two sisters, born in Ghana in the eighteenth century, each unaware of the other. One marries an Englishman and leads a life of comfort. The other is captured in a raid on her village, imprisoned, and enslaved.

We meet their descendants through eight generations and two continents: from the Gold Coast to the plantations of Mississippi, from the American Civil War to Jazz Age Harlem. This extraordinary novel illuminates slavery's troubled legacy both for those who were taken and those who stayed-and shows how the memory of captivity has been inscribed on the soul of our nation.

Homegoing was the winner of the PEN/ Hemingway Award, and the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Award, as well as a New York Times and a Washington Post Notable Book. It was named One of the Best Books of the Year by Oprah.com, NPR, Time, Entertainment Weekly and Esquire.

"Thanks to Ms. Gyasi's instinctive storytelling gifts, the book leaves the reader with a visceral understanding of both the savage realities of slavery and the emotional damage that is handed down, over the centuries. . . . By its conclusion, the characters' tales of loss and resilience have acquired an inexorable and cumulative emotional weight."  -The New York Times

 

About the Author: Yaa Gyasi

Yaa Gyasi (photo credit Michae Lionstar)Yaa Gyasi was born in Ghana and raised in Huntsville, Alabama. She holds a BA in English from Stanford University and an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, where she held a Dean's Graduate Research Fellowship. She lives in New York City.

Yaa Gyasi will visit Seattle in May 2018. More details to come soon.

About Seattle Reads

Seattle Reads is designed to deepen engagement in literature through reading and discussion. Seattle Reads Homegoing is made possible by The Seattle Public Library Foundation and The Wallace Foundation, with additional support from media sponsors The Seattle Times and KUOW 94.9 Public Radio, and Vintage Books.

What has Seattle read in years past?

For details, see Previous Years' Featured Works.

Seattle Reads
2018 Seattle Reads: 'Homegoing' by Yaa Gyasi