Other Books by Tayari Jones
Tayari Jones is an American author and winner of the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award for Debut Fiction. She was educated at Spelman College, the University of Iowa and Arizona State University.
She started writing seriously at Spelman College, where she studied with Pearl Cleage, who published her first story, "Eugenics", in Catalyst magazine. Jones went on to The University of Iowa, where she worked toward a Ph.D. in English, but she left after completing her master's degree. She also studied at The University of Georgia, where she worked with Kevin Young and Judith Ortiz Cofer. She left UGA to enroll in the MFA program at Arizona State University where she worked with Ron Carlson and Jewell Parker Rhodes.
Jones has taught creative writing at The University of Illinois and also at George Washington University, where she served as the Jenny McKean Moore Writer in Washington. She is now a member of the MFA faculty at the Newark Campus of Rutgers University.
Her first novel, Leaving Atlanta, is a three-voiced coming-of-age story set against the backdrop of the Atlanta Child Murders of 1979-81. This novel, which was written while she was a graduate student at Arizona State University, is based on the experience as a child in Atlanta during that period. It won the 2003 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award for Debut Fiction. Aletha Spann of 30Nineteen Productions has purchased the film option for Leaving Atlanta.
The Untelling is also set in Atlanta. Described in Publishers Weekly as Jones's "deep-felt second novel", the book examines how the protagonist comes to terms with the loss of key members of her family as a child before having to redefine herself all over again in her mid-twenties. It was awarded the Lillian Smith Book Award in 2005.
Silver Sparrow, Jones's third novel, was published by Algonquin Books in 2011. It was an American Booksellers Association number 1 "Indie Next" pick.
An American Marriage, her latest novel, was published on February 6, 2018 by Algonquin. On the same day, Oprah Winfrey announced that An American Marriage would be a pick of Oprah's Book Club. An American Marriage is about an African-American couple whose lives are shaken when the husband is arrested for a crime he did not commit.
Winner of the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award for Debut Fiction
Author of "An American Wedding"
An Oprah 2018 Book Club Selection
Important Notice Regarding This Year's Annual Luncheon
Due to a serious health challenge, Nikki Giovanni will not be able to fulfill her engagement with us on April 7, 2018. Her doctors have advised her not to travel. The Foundation is happy to report that on Nikki's recommendation, we extended an invitation to Tayari Jones, author of four books, including her latest, "An American Marriage" and that Ms. Jones has accepted our invitation! Ms. Jones is a winner of the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award for Debut Fiction. An American Marriage is an Oprah 2018 Book Club Selection.
We are confident that this year's luncheon will be another wonderful success! We are sure that you will join us in extending best wishes to Nikki Giovanni for her healing and well-being.