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Tayari Jones Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Leaving Atlanta (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Untelling (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
Silver Sparrow (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
An American Marriage (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

The Believer Book of Writers Talking to Writers(2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
Atlanta Noir(2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves(2018)Description / Buy at Amazon

An American author of contemporary literature and fiction, the writer Tayari Jones is world renowned all thanks to her unique and perceptive voice that resonates with readers regardless of their background. This is due to her down-to-earth manner that manages to convey her perspective from a place of both confidence and vulnerability, displaying a real sense of humanity in her prose. Carrying her novels forwards in a strong and independent manner, she is able to draw the reader in, allowing them to see the world ostensibly through her eyes, creating a sense of real intimacy with them, allowing them to gain a unique insight that they may otherwise not have had. Chosen for Oprah’s Book Club in 2018, she has made waves throughout the industry, with many public figures and critics singing her praises, as both the critics and the general public have been taking to her work. Using characters that come from a very real place, she really manages to touch on real-world issues that resonate throughout her work and her audience at large. This has given her an even greater profile in recent years, allowing her to expand upon her portfolio of work with resounding success. Knowing and understanding her readers on an intimate level, she really makes the most of her material, creating a vibrant and upbeat tone, whilst also ensuring that her readers find something new that challenges their beliefs each and every time. This has lead to her becoming one of the most sought after voices in recent years, allowing her influence to spread globally on an unprecedented scale. It is also the familiar nature of her characters that really rings true, as they manage to provide the reader with a window into a highly distinctive mindset and outlook. With her career still showing signs of continuing onwards and upwards, she doesn’t seem to be stopping any time soon, as her writing career grows from strength-to-strength.

Early and Personal Life

Born in Atlanta, Georgia, in the United States, Tayari Jones grew up with a strong passion for both reading and writing from a very early age, always looking to expand upon it and nurture it over the years. Graduating from the University of Iowa, Spelman College and the Arizona State University, she would also have a lifelong career in academia too, something which continues in her position as an Associate Professor who is currently working upon the MFA program that is situated at the Rutgers-Newark University. This has allowed her to work upon her voice over the years, building upon her material and experience, as well as refining her craft and style too. With a lot more to come in the future, there’s plenty more planned on the horizon, as her writing career will carry on for quite some time to come.

Writing Career

Producing and publishing her first novel in 2002, Tayari Jones would make her debut onto the literary scene with the stand-alone novel titled ‘Leaving Atlanta’. This would be a book that would fully utilize Atlanta, a city and location that Jones holds very close to her heart, something which becomes abundantly clear as the novel progresses. Over time she would continue to develop her career on from this, taking the time to hone and refine her voice, building upon what it was that she really wanted to say. Whilst she wouldn’t create any series as such, she would publish self-contained titles that would speak for themselves, making it clear what her viewpoints were, as she would write from a very singular point-of-view. This isn’t to say that she doesn’t empathize with all walks of life though, as she would really work at getting into the mindset of characters with personalities and lives far removed from her own. Ultimately it would be her sense of compassion that would ring true, as she continues to enjoy a high level of success to this very day.

Silver Sparrow

Initially released in 2011, this first came out through the ‘Algonquin Books’ publishing label. Using many themes familiar to Jones, it would also be a stand-alone title. Set in Atlanta too, it is definitely a must for any fans of the author.

Looking into the lives of those that are seemingly ordinary from the outside, Jones gets to the heart of what really makes them tick as living breathing people. Working as character studies essentially, Jones has an extremely sympathetic insight into the nature and personality of very real human beings. Heading to Atlanta once again as well, she finds herself on familiar ground, something which works to her benefit ultimately as she tells the stories that she wants to tell.

Set during the 1980s, this heads into a middle-class Atlanta neighborhood, as it examines two families revolving around the character of James Witherspoon. A bigamist by nature, he has two daughters; one from each family, as they both finally meet up, with only one of them initially knowing that they are sisters. As the truth begins to come out, they begin to start discovering some home-truths about themselves that may be a little close for comfort. What will they discover? Can they cope with the truth about their father? Who is the silver sparrow?

An America Marriage

Selected for Oprah Winfrey’s Book Club in 2018, this would show Jones at the peak of her powers. Coming out in 2018 through Algonquin Books once again, it would show a clear sense of development in her career. Using Atlanta once more too as its backdrop, it show Tayaria Jones at her most eloquent and will stand the test of time for years to come.

This would really showcase Jones’s true gift for storytelling, as it would come to be heralded as her really coming into her own as a writer, with many celebrating it throughout the industry. Looking at the values behind the ‘American Dream’ through that of its central characters, it really manages to set the tone for a period and moment in time. Using Atlanta again, it is no surprise that Jones uses her home city once more, as she allows the city to become a character in of itself, as it provides the ideal backdrop to the action.

Embodying the ‘American Dream’, a newlywed couple find everything they could ever hope for, as the executive Roy and artist Celestial find themselves in wedded bliss in the New South. This peace is soon disturbed though, after Roy is arrested and incarcerated for a crime he didn’t commit, something which they both know to be heinous. After five years the crime is overturned, as it is found to be false and, returning to Atlanta, Roy finds that the life and love he once knew may have changed forever. Does she still love him? How does the best man at their wedding Andre play a role? What will become of an American marriage?

Book Series In Order » Authors » Tayari Jones

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