Acclaimed author Roxane Gay releases debut novel, ‘An Untamed State’


On May 6, Grove Atlantic will release Roxane Gay’s much-anticipated debut novel An Untamed State, The Kalamazoo Gazette reports. Gay has previously published a collection of short stories and poetry, Ayiti, as well as pieces in many literary magazines. Gay is the co-editor of PANK and the essays editor for The Rumpus. She teaches writing at Eastern Illinois University. She has an essay collection, Bad Feminist, forthcoming from Harper Perennial later this summer.
Gay’s novel has garnered praise from the likes of Edwidge Danticat, Meg Wolitzer, and Tayari Jones. The accolades are growing day by day: the novel was named as one of 2014’s fifteen most anticipated books by flavorwire, it received starred reviews from the Library Journal and Kirkus Reviews, and buzz continues to build on literary websites across the country.

An Untamed State explores the story of a Haitian woman kidnapped for ransom, her captivity as her father refuses to pay and her husband fights for her release, and her struggle to come to terms with the ordeal in its aftermath. Bookbug bookseller Kirsten Jennings has this to say about the book’s impact: “This book is breathtaking in the very literal sense of the word. The story will consume you, the suspense will overtake you, the violations will enrage you, the humanity will overwhelm you, and Gay’s remarkable, fearless voice will carry you through. Gay’s novel is a kidnapping story, an examination of Haitian privilege and class, a family drama, a feminist legend of survival — move it to the top of your list.”

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