Esi Edugyan The Second Life of Samuel Tyne

ISBN 13: 9780060736033

The Second Life of Samuel Tyne

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A young man of great promise when he emigrated from Ghana by way of Oxford University to the New World in 1955, Samuel Tyne was determined to accomplish significant things. Fifteen years later, now a failed and insignificant government employee, Samuel inherits his uncle's crumbling mansion in Aster, a small town in Canada. Despite his wife's resistance and the sullen complaints of his thirteen-year-old twin daughters, Samuel quits his job and moves his family to the town. For here, he believes, is that fabled second chance, and he is determined to not let it slip away.

At first, Aster seems perfect. To Samuel, the formerly all-black town represents the return to a communal, idyllic way of life. But he soon discovers the town's problems: a history of in-fighting, a strict town council, and a series of mysterious fires that put all the townsfolk on edge. When his daughters cease to speak and refuse to explain their increasingly threatening behavior, Samuel turns more and more to the refuge of his electronics shop, where he hopes to build one of the country's first advanced computing machines. As his ambitions intensify, the life he has struggled so hard to improve begins to disintegrate around him, and a dark current of menace in the town is turned upon the Tyne family. Written by Edugyan when she was twenty-five, The Second Life of Samuel Tyne is the highly original debut of a gifted writer.

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From the Inside Flap:

Haunting and atmospheric, this debut novel portrays the heartbreak, hardship and moments of surprising grace in the life of a man struggling to realize his destiny.
A young man of astonishing promise when he emigrated from Ghana in 1955, Samuel Tyne was determined to accomplish great things. Fifteen long years later, he's an insignificant government employee who hates his job when he unexpectedly inherits his uncle's crumbling mansion in Aster, Alberta. Despite his wife's resistance and the sullen complaints of his thirteen-year-old twin daughters, Samuel quits his job and moves his family to the town. For here, he believes, is that fabled second chance, and he is determined not to fail again.
At first, Aster seems perfect -- to Samuel, the formerly all-black town represents the return to a communal, idyllic way of life. But he soon discovers the town's problems: a history of in-fighting, a strict town council and a series of mysterious fires that put all the townsfolk on edge. When his daughters cease speaking and refuse to explain their increasingly strange behaviour, Samuel turns more and more to the refuge of his electronics shop.
As his ambitions intensify, the life he has struggled so hard to improve begins to disintegrate around him, and a dark current of menace in the town is turned upon the Tyne family.

About the Author:

ESI EDUGYAN’s Half Blood Blues won the Scotiabank Giller Prize and was a finalist for the Man Booker Prize, the Governor General’s Literary Award, the Rogers Writers’ Trust Prize and the Orange Prize. Esi lives in Victoria, BC.

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