An American Marriage

An American Marriage

Book - 2018
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THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

OPRAH'S BOOK CLUB 2018 SELECTION

LONGLISTED FOR THE 2018 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FOR FICTION

"One of my favorite parts of summer is deciding what to read when things slow down just a bit, whether it's on a vacation with family or just a quiet afternoon . . . An American Marriage by Tayari Jones is a moving portrayal of the effects of a wrongful conviction on a young African-American couple." --Barack Obama

"Haunting . . . Beautifully written." -- The New York Times Book Review

"Brilliant and heartbreaking . . . Unforgettable." -- USA Today

"A tense and timely love story . . . Packed with brave questions about race and class." -- People

"Compelling." -- The Washington Post

"Epic . . . Transcendent . . . Triumphant." -- Elle

Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn't commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend, and best man at their wedding. As Roy's time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her center. After five years, Roy's conviction is suddenly overturned, and he returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together.

This stirring love story is a profoundly insightful look into the hearts and minds of three people who are at once bound and separated by forces beyond their control. An American Marriage is a masterpiece of storytelling, an intimate look deep into the souls of people who must reckon with the past while moving forward -- with hope and pain -- into the future.
Publisher: Chapel Hill, North Carolina : Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 2018.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9781616201340
1616201347
Branch Call Number: FICTION JONES
Characteristics: 308 pages ; 24 cm

Opinion

From Library Staff

When her new husband is arrested and imprisoned for a crime she knows he did not commit, a rising artist takes comfort in a longtime friendship, only to encounter unexpected challenges in resuming her life when her husband's sentence is suddenly overturned.


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j
jesskadoll
Aug 21, 2020

I had heard rave reviews on this book, and found it mediocre. I couldn't love or get connected to any of the characters. Although the story line was great, it was just an average read for me.

a
alecbussott
Aug 17, 2020

One of the most compelling reads I have encountered. This book will have you frustrated at one moment and elated at the next. A great examination of race and marriage in the US.

t
therebeccaharris
Jul 03, 2020

https://electricliterature.com/46-books-by-women-of-color-to-read-in-2018/

AndreaG_KCMO Jun 30, 2020

"Love is not love/ Which alters when it alteration finds...O no! it is an ever-fixed mark/ That looks on tempests and is never shaken..." In my former life as a teacher, Sonnet 116 was my exemplar of figurative language and emotional intensity. The poem is beautiful to read aloud, its aspirations daunting, even unattainable.

Tayari Jones's love story [and social commentary] is tragic because the characters pursue Shakespeare's lofty ideals but are relegated to reality. After Roy is wrongly imprisoned, Celestial's letters convey her ongoing love and loyalty to him. As years pass, she must quietly grapple with her fading feelings, the shame of accepting the relationship's end, and the complications caused by Roy's early release.

Each character's perspective is relatable, authentic, and causes the reader to question whether love can and should always be born out "even to the edge of doom."

kreedDCL Jun 20, 2020

Racial injustice and false imprisonment test the limits of what a relationship can endure.

JCLHeatherM Jun 10, 2020

Beautifully well written and packed with emotion, heartbreak, and injustice, Jones invites readers to examine the marriage of Roy and Celestial, two newlyweds barely into their second year of marriage when they are ripped apart by an unjust legal system that deems Roy a criminal. Facing a 12-year sentence, Roy and Celestial struggle to maintain their relationship and are facing an uncertain future when Roy is released back into society seven years early. Rather than portray a rosy ending, Jones promotes realism, examining the ties that bind us and the choices that we all make

j
JANMAYS
May 15, 2020

Innocent black jailed for rape. Not for book club

OPL_AnnaW May 01, 2020

What happens to a relationship when someone is wrongly incarcerated? This powerful novel delves into the aftermath of such a tragedy, providing an unforgettable narrative and complex characters.

ArapahoeKati Mar 04, 2020

Tayari Jones does an excellent job of writing complicated characters. You'll find lots to discuss and ponder while you read this.

ArapahoeTina Feb 06, 2020

A twisty, turny, thoughtful book about marriage, love, race and how life rarely goes the way we plan. I burned through this in 2 days. I think this would be a great book club pick!

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ArapahoeTina Feb 20, 2020

I don’t believe that blood makes a family; kin is the circle you create, hands held tight.

ArapahoeTina Feb 20, 2020

Marriage is between two people. There is no studio audience.

ArapahoeTina Feb 20, 2020

There should be a word for this, the way it feels to steal something that’s already yours.

a
abbi_g
Dec 27, 2018

The vast generosity of women is a mysterious tunnel, and nobody knows where it leads.

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