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Ask Algonquin

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Abr 23, 2009, 9:11am

Algonquin published Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's first novel, Purple Hibiscus, Anita Rau Badami's first The Hero's Walk and Laila Lalami's first Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits, three excellent, excellent first books by women authors who were not born in the West and whose tales open another part of the world to us. Although I have read many Algonquin books, these are three titles that have stayed with me. Algonquin seems to have gotten away from this. . .

I'm not referring to further publication of these particular authors* so much as the publication of this kind of work in general.

*I do note that you have published Lalami's newest novel, but I was distraught to have to buy from Canada, Badami's latest.

Abr 27, 2009, 10:21am

Hey avaland--we love having them too! The editors here do their best to acquire writers from all over and it's no particular pattern that we don't have any new ones of late. We are very fortunate to be publishing Laila's debut novel--we're extremely excited about that! I've been in the book business a few years now (starting out as a bookseller), and even in that relatively short time, I've seen Algonquin change and morph. Authors leave Algonquin to go to other houses, authors come from other houses to join the ranks of the Algonquin all-stars, it's an interesting process. Through all the changes, though, we just hope we're continuing to provide quality reading for book lovers around the world.

Abr 28, 2009, 9:44pm

>Thanks for getting back to me. I don't mind so much them leaving (which, as you know, happens a lot in the book world), I was just hoping the "trend" that I saw in these authors/books would continue (ok, granted, the 'trend' was the wishful figment of my own imagination).

We are very fortunate to be publishing Laila's debut novel
Don't you mean her 2nd, or are you counting Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits as a novella or a collection? I have recently started Ben Jelloun's Leaving Tangier and I can't help but think back to Hope & Other Dangerous Pursuits...

Abr 29, 2009, 12:19pm

Yeah, we see Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits as a collection of interlinking stories, rather than a novel. It seems to be doing well, hopefully that trend will continue!

Maio 5, 2009, 8:24pm

>4 lmcguirk: Ah, I see...