The SUNY Ulster Herbert H. & Sofia P. Reuner Library Writers Series is a special program begun in 1998, sponsored by The Ulster Community College Foundation, that brings renowned writers to campus every fall. This is a truly unique opportunity for SUNY Ulster students and community members to hear award winning authors read from their work.
Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah
Bestselling Fiction Writer
Tuesday, November 8, 2022 1:15 PM
Moderated by Dr. Ivan Godfrey, Associate Professor
Criminal Justice & Human Services
“Reading Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah is like being shaken awake. Adjei-Brenyah skewers the ways we brush past racism and injustice, making the absurdity of the rhetoric around both impossible to ignore.” —BuzzFeed
“Inventive, stirring, ingenious. Adjei-Brenyah is a versatile writer who creates a micro-universe with each story that explodes our expectations and takes us inside frustrated lives.” —Bernardine Evaristo
Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah is the New York Times-bestselling author of Friday Black (Mariner Books, 2018). Of the collection, George Saunders notes, “These stories are an excitement and a wonder: strange, crazed, urgent and funny, yet classical in the way they take on stubborn human problems: the depravities of capitalism, love struggling to assert itself within heartless systems. The wildly talented Adjei-Brenyah has made these edgy tales immensely charming, via his resolute, heartful, immensely likeable narrators, capable of seeing the world as blessed and cursed at once.”
Adjei-Brenyah’s debut novel, Chain-Gang All-Stars, is forthcoming in 2023 with Penguin Random House. About the book, Kiese Laymon says, “In a narrative world where the real is growingly more unbelievable than the make believe, Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah’s Chain-Gang All-Stars is an uncanny, singular feat of literature. I’ve never read satire so bruising, so brolic, so tender and really, so pitch-perfect. It’s nuts brilliant. Just read it!”
Adjei-Brenyah was selected by Colson Whitehead as one of the National Book Foundation’s “5 Under 35” honorees, the winner of the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award, and a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Award for Best First Book and the Aspen Words Literary Prize. His work has appeared or is forthcoming from numerous publications, including the New York Times Book Review, Esquire, Literary Hub, the Paris Review, Guernica, and Longreads.
Originally from Spring Valley, New York, he graduated from SUNY Albany and went on to receive his MFA from Syracuse University.