Zinzi Clemmons What We Lose: A Novel

ISBN 13: 9780735221710

What We Lose: A Novel

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9780735221710: What We Lose: A Novel
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A National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 Honoree
NBCC John Leonard First Book Prize Finalist
Longlisted for the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction & the Aspen Words Literary Prize
Named a Best Book of the Year by Vogue, NPR, Elle, Esquire, Harper’s Bazaar, The Huffington Post, The A.V. Club, The Root, PasteBustleand Kirkus Reviews

“The debut novel of the year.” Vogue

“Like so many stories of the black diaspora, What We Lose is an examination of haunting. ” —Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker

“A richly volatile study of grief, wonderment and love.” —Sam Sacks, The Wall Street Journal

“A startling, poignant debut.” The Atlantic

“Raw and ravishing, this novel pulses with vulnerability and shimmering anger.” —Nicole Dennis-Benn, O, the Oprah Magazine

“Stunning. . . . Powerfully moving and beautifully wrought, What We Lose reflects on family, love, loss, race, womanhood, and the places we feel home.” —Buzzfeed

“Remember this name: Zinzi Clemmons. Long may she thrill us with exquisite works like What We Lose. . . . The book is a remarkable journey.” —Essence

From an author of rare, haunting power, a stunning novel about a young African-American woman coming of age—a deeply felt meditation on race, sex, family, and country


Raised in Pennsylvania, Thandi views the world of her mother’s childhood in Johannesburg as both impossibly distant and ever present. She is an outsider wherever she goes, caught between being black and white, American and not. She tries to connect these dislocated pieces of her life, and as her mother succumbs to cancer, Thandi searches for an anchor—someone, or something, to love.

In arresting and unsettling prose, we watch Thandi’s life unfold, from losing her mother and learning to live without the person who has most profoundly shaped her existence, to her own encounters with romance and unexpected motherhood. Through exquisite and emotional vignettes, Clemmons creates a stunning portrayal of what it means to choose to live, after loss. An elegiac distillation, at once intellectual and visceral, of a young woman’s understanding of absence and identity that spans continents and decades, What We Lose heralds the arrival of a virtuosic new voice in fiction.

One of the New York Times, Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Redbook, Marie Claire, Essence, Houston Chronicle, LA Daily News, Nylon, and Elle’s Books to Read This Summer

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Review:

An Amazon Best Book of July 2017: In its simplest form, What We Lose tells a story of a young African American woman coming to terms with adulthood and the death of her mother. As Thandi tries to process the truths that cannot possibly be, she swings from gut emotion—“She’s gone. But she’s here, I can feel her. I can see her that day they told us that everything was going to be all right. But she’s not here. But I can feel her arms around me. It feels like the breeze coming off the river...it smells like her breath.”—to searing observations about the word in which we live: “I’ve often thought that being a light-skinned black woman is like a being a well-dressed person who is also homeless...you have nowhere to rest, nowhere to feel safe.” The novel weaves in and out of the past and present, from memories of childhood to Thandi’s own pregnancy and love affairs, to visits to her mother's childhood home in Johannesburg. There are photographs, graphs, drawings, pages filled with a single line that infuse the story with an immediacy. Through Thandi’s pain and process, she (re)constructs her identity from the memory of her mother, family, her experiences, and the reality of the world that surrounds her. A breathtaking novel. --Al Woodworth

About the Author:

Zinzi Clemmons was raised in Philadelphia by a South African mother and an American father. A graduate of Brown and Columbia, her writing has appeared in Zoetrope: All-Story, The Paris Review Daily, Transition, and elsewhere. She is a cofounder and former publisher of Apogee Journal and a contributing editor to Literary Hub. She has been in residence at the MacDowell Colony, Bread Loaf, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and Dar al-Ma'mûn in Marrakech, Morocco. Clemmons lives in Los Angeles with her husband, where she teaches at The Colburn Conservatory and Occidental College.

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Book Description Hardcover. Condition: New. From an author of rare, haunting power, a stunning novel about a young African-American woman coming of ageóa deeply felt meditation on race, sex, family, and countryRaised in Pennsylvania, Thandi views the world of her motherís childhood in Johannesburg as both impossibly distant and ever present. She is an outsider wherever she goes, caught between being black and white, American and not. She tries to connect these dislocated pieces of her life, and as her mother succumbs to cancer, Thandi searches for an anchorósomeone, or something, to love. In arresting and unsettling prose, we watch Thandiís life unfold, from losing her mother and learning to live without the person who has most profoundly shaped her existence, to her own encounters with romance and unexpected motherhood. Through exquisite and emotional vignettes, Clemmons creates a stunning portrayal of what it means to choose to live, after loss. An elegiac distillation, at once intellectual and visceral, of a young womanís understanding of absence and identity that spans continents and decades,What We Loseheralds the arrival of a virtuosic new voice in fiction. Seller Inventory # 5666202

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Book Description VIKING, 2017. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. A National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 Honoree Longlisted for the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction the Aspen Words Literary Prize Named a Best Book of the Year by Vogue, NPR, Elle, Esquire, Harper s Bazaar, The A.V. Club, The Root, Bustle, and Kirkus Reviews The debut novel of the year. --Vogue Like so many stories of the black diaspora, What We Lose is an examination of haunting. --Doreen St. Felix, The New Yorker A richly volatile study of grief, wonderment and love. --Sam Sacks, The Wall Street Journal A startling, poignant debut. --The Atlantic Raw and ravishing, this novel pulses with vulnerability and shimmering anger. --Nicole Dennis-Benn, O, the Oprah Magazine Stunning. . . . Powerfully moving and beautifully wrought, What We Lose reflects on family, love, loss, race, womanhood, and the places we feel home. --Buzzfeed Remember this name: Zinzi Clemmons. Long may she thrill us with exquisite works like What We Lose. . . . The book is a remarkable journey. --Essence From an author of rare, haunting power, a stunning novel about a young African-American woman coming of age--a deeply felt meditation on race, sex, family, and country Raised in Pennsylvania, Thandi views the world of her mother s childhood in Johannesburg as both impossibly distant and ever present. She is an outsider wherever she goes, caught between being black and white, American and not. She tries to connect these dislocated pieces of her life, and as her mother succumbs to cancer, Thandi searches for an anchor--someone, or something, to love. In arresting and unsettling prose, we watch Thandi s life unfold, from losing her mother and learning to live without the person who has most profoundly shaped her existence, to her own encounters with romance and unexpected motherhood. Through exquisite and emotional vignettes, Clemmons creates a stunning portrayal of what it means to choose to live, after loss. An elegiac distillation, at once intellectual and visceral, of a young woman s understanding of absence and identity that spans continents and decades, What We Lose heralds the arrival of a virtuosic new voice in fiction. One of the New York Times, Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Redbook, Marie Claire, Essence, Houston Chronicle, LA Daily News, Nylon, and Elle s Books to Read This Summer. Seller Inventory # ABZ9780735221710

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