Tiphanie Yanique is from Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands. The author of the story collection How to Escape from a Leper Colony, she is a 2010 Rona Jaffe Writers’ Award winner and was named by the National Book Awards as one of 2011’s 5 Under 35.” She teaches at the New School and lives in Brooklyn and Saint Thomas.
A major debut from an award-winning writeran epic family saga set against the magic and the rhythms of the Virgin Islands.
In the early 1900s an important ship sinks into the Caribbean Sea, just as the Virgin Islands are transferred from Danish to American rule. Orphaned by the sunk vessel are two sisters and their half-brother, now faced with an uncertain identity and future. Each of them is unusually beautiful, and each is in possession of a particular magic that will either sink or save them.
Chronicling three generations of an island family from 1916 to the 1970s, Land of Love and Drowning is a novel of love and magic, set against the emergence of Saint Thomas into the modern world. Wholly unique, with echoes of Toni Morrison, Gabriel Garcia Márquez, and the author’s own Caribbean family history, the story is told in a language and rhythm that evokes an entire world and way of life and love. Following the Bradshaw family through sixty years of fathers and daughters, mothers and sons, love affairs, curses, magical gifts, loyalties, births, deaths, and triumphs, Land of Love and Drowning is a gorgeous, vibrant debut by an exciting, prize-winning young writer.
Praise for How to Escape from a Leper Colony
“I reached the end of How to Escape from a Leper Colony with the exhilarating sense that I had been on the best kind of journey—not, finally, to the Virgin Islands nor Trinidad nor Houston nor London, but to the imagination of a wonderfully talented young writer who has many more stories to tell.” —Margot Livesey, The Boston Globe
“To wrap your mind around life on an island, you need to understand insularity, restlessness, the way it feels to have a fluid sense of identity. All this and more is what you get from Tiphanie Yanique’s haunting and vibrant debut fiction collection.” —O, The Oprah Magazine