Archives par étiquette : MY MONTICELLO

MY MONTICELLO, novella de Jocelyn Nicole Johnson, paraîtra chez Harvill Secker au Royaume-Uni

Les éditions Harvill Secker au Royaume-Uni ont fait l’acquisition du premier recueil de nouvelles de Jocelyn Nicole Johnson intitulé MY MONTICELLO. Ils publieront d’abord la novella éponyme dans une édition reliée en novembre 2021, puis le recueil entier dans un deuxième temps. Aux États-Unis, c’est Henry Holt qui publiera le recueil en octobre 2021. Une négociation est en cours pour les droits d’adaptation audiovisuelle. (Lire l’article du Bookseller)

Dans la novella d’anticipation, un groupe de voisins d’horizons divers vivant à Charlottesville en Virginie cherchent à se réfugier à Monticello, la plantation historique de Thomas Jefferson, après de violentes émeutes provoquées par des suprémacistes blancs. (Lire la présentation complète)

L’éditeur chez Harvill Secker a déclaré : « Families, lovers and near-strangers care for and sustain one another over 19 heart-stopping days on the mountain, finding ways to hope, to resist, and to live, as the town burns below them. Their story is told by Da’Naisha Love, an imagined young Black descendant of Jefferson and Sally Hemings. Love must reckon with her own relationship to the house and its enslaved former inhabitants, as the present threat draws ever closer ».

Le livre a déjà reçu d’excellentes avant-critiques :

“A badass debut by any measure―nimble, knowing, and electrifying.” ―Colson Whitehead, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Nickel Boys, Underground Railroad and Harlem Shuffle

“It is a rare breed of writer who can tell any kind of story and do so with exquisite deftness. Jocelyn Nicole Johnson is one such writer. Her debut collection, MY MONTICELLO, is comprised of six stories of astonishing range and each one explores what it means to live in a world that is at once home and not. She dissects the unbearable burdens of such displacement. The crowning glory of this collection is the title story, a novella about a world that has fallen apart and a small band of people who take refuge in Monticello, among the old ghosts of the former plantation, how they become family, and how they try to make a stand for their lives, for the world the way it once was. This collection is absolutely unforgettable and Johnson’s prose soars to remarkable heights.” ―Roxane Gay, New York Times bestselling author of Hunger and Ayiti

“There is a special pleasure in discovering a voice that is vital and unlike anything else you’ve known before. Jocelyn Nicole Johnson is such a voice. One that is necessary and brimming with both heart and imagination, Johnson’s My Monticello is a beautiful debut work of art.” ―Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, New York Times bestselling author of Friday Black

“Johnson crafts a fine-grained character study that also harrowingly reveals how racist violence repeats. . . . Johnson has a knack for irony and inventive conceits. . . . A sharp debut by a writer with wit and confidence.” ―Kirkus starred review

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MY MONTICELLO de Jocelyn Nicole Johnson

A searing literary debut that not only contains multitudes in terms of its reverberations of past, present, and future, but also lovingly creates within its pages a timeless home for its characters. A literary tour de force, it is a powerful call for the collectivism that is likely America’s only true hope.

by Jocelyn Nicole Johnson
Holt, October 2021
(chez DeFiore and Co.

Jocelyn Nicole Johnson first broke onto the literary scene with a short story, ‘Control Negro,’ originally published in Guernica and later collected in Best American Short Stories (2018), as selected by Roxane Gay. In that story, a Black professor conducts a lifelong experiment on his own son to test America’s promise of racial equity and liberty for all. Since that piece’s publication, Johnson has crafted MY MONTICELLO, a work of debut fiction which encompasses five shorter stories, inclusive of ‘Control Negro,’ plus a high-concept, 41,000 word novella from which the book derives its name.
In that novella, ‘My Monticello,’ Johnson relays the near-future experiences of a diverse group of Charlottesville, Virginia neighbors who, in an effort to escape a band of marauding white supremacists, stake claim on founding father Thomas Jefferson’s historic plantation home. Unfolding over nineteen increasingly harrowing days, this unforgettable tale is narrated by a young Black descendant of Jefferson and Sally Hemings (an enslaved woman of mixed race owned by President Jefferson, who fathered her six children).
The book’s other four short pieces range from the life story of a woman determined to escape her own name and home state, yet held in place by unforgiving roots (‘Virginia Is Not Your Home’); the moments leading up to an elementary-school bully encouraging a group of male classmates to commit an act of violence against the lone African immigrant in class, even as they all struggle to find sweetness in their days (‘Something Sweet On Our Tongues’); the trials of an immigrant father‘s precarity and loss of dignity as he struggles to ensure his son’s future (‘The King of Xandria;), and the urgency of a mother hoping to own a home, at last, for herself and her estranged daughter in the face of an ever-apocalyptic present (‘Buying A House Ahead of The Apocalypse’).

Jocelyn Nicole Johnson’s writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Guernica, The Guardian, Shenandoah, Phoebe, Prime Number, and elsewhere. In addition to the Best American Short Stories 2018 anthology, her work has been read live by LeVar Burton and broadcast as part of PRI’s Selected Shorts series. She has received fellowships from Hedgebrook, Tin House, and VCAA. Johnson lives and teaches art to public-school children in Charlottesville, Virginia.