Esi Edugyan: Biography

Esi Edugyan

01 sep 1977

The Canadian novelist Esi Edugyan got fame through her novels, ‘The Second Life of Samuel Tyne’ and ‘Half-Blood Blues’. Esi was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta in 1977. Her parents were immigrants from Ghana.

In order to cherish her interest in writing, Esi studied creative writing at the University of Victoria and Johns Hopkins University. Esi has even taught creative writing at both the universities. She has received fellowships from U.S, Scotland, Iceland, Germany, Hungary, Finland, Spain and Belgium.

Esi Edugyan’s debut novel, ‘The Second Life of Samuel Tyne’ was published in the year 2004. The novel was well received and was a great break through for Esi. The book was recognized as one of 2004’s Books to Remember by the New York Public Library; it was also nominated for the Hurston/ Wright Legacy Award and was a More Book Lust Selection.

Although Esi’s first novel received warm welcome, she was unable to find a publisher for her second manuscript. Esi dropped the idea of selling her second creation and started writing her third novel, ‘Half Blood Blues’. The time that Esi spent as a writer-in-residence in Stuggart, Germany inspired her to write the third novel.

‘Half-Blood Blues’ was published in 2011 and was an instant success. The book was nominated and short-listed for that year’s, Man Booker Prize, Scotiabank Giller Prize, Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize and Governor General’s Award for English language fiction. Esi Edugyan received the honour of being one among the two Canadian writers who bagged all the four awards in 2011. The very next year, Esi received the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Half-Blood Blues.

‘Dreaming of Elsewhere: Observations on Home’ was the first non-fiction published by Esi in 2014. Esi has not only won awards but she also sits on many international panels, including the Lesart Literary Festival in Esslingen, Germany, the Budapest Book Fair in Hungary and Barnard College in New York.

Esi married Steven Price, a novelist and poet and she currently live in Victoria, British Columbia and have one kid.