The first Jamaican to win the Man Booker Prize, A Brief History of Seven Killings is Marlon James’ third novel. His first novel, John Crow’s Devil, was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the Commonwealth Writers Prize, and was a New York Times Editor’s Choice, while 2009’s The Book of Night Women won the 2010 Dayton Literary Peace Prize, The Minnesota Book Award and was a finalist for the 2010 National Book Critics Circle Award in fiction as well as an NAACP Image Award.
Mr. James was born in Kingston, Jamaica, and graduated from the University of the West Indies in 1991 with a degree in Language and Literature, and from Wilkes University in 2006 with a Masters in creative writing. He has taught for the last eight years at Macalester College in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
A Brief History of Seven Killings crosses multiple genres: the political thriller, the oral biography, and the classic whodunit to confront the untold history of Jamaica in the late 1970’s, as well as exploring the country’s clandestine battles of the Cold War. Michael Wood, chair of the Man Bookers’ judges, said that the judges came to a unanimous decision to award to the Prize to A Brief History of Seven Killings in less than two hours, calling it the “most exciting” book on the shortlist.
The Prize comes with a £50,000 award (over $75,000) and a huge boost to book sales.