Granta reveals its Best of Young US Novelists 2017

Granta reveals its Best of Young US Novelists 2017

Boston-born author Ottessa Moshfegh, whose second novel Eileen (Vintage) was shortlisted for the 2016 Man Booker Prize, debut novelists Yaa Gyasi, author of Homegoing (Viking), and Emma Cline, whose The Girls (Chatto & Windus) is in the running for Debut Book of the Year at next month's British Book Awards, are among the names to feature on the 2017 Granta Best of Young American Novelists list, announced today (26th April).

The list of 21 writers chosen by Granta magazine for the once-in-a-decade listing of literary fiction's most prominent represents a "dynamic and diverse" literary scene and provides a "snapshot of the exceptional talent working across the country", according to this year's judges - novelists Patrick deWitt, A M Homes, Kelly Link and Ben Marcus, and Granta’s editor and publisher Sigrid Rausing. Seven of the 21 authors chosen for the list are published by Granta, and a further eight by Penguin Random House UK.

There is a raft of debut novelists on the list, three published by Granta: Rachel B Glaser, author of Paulina and Fran; Chinelo Okparanta, the Nigeria-born author of Under the Udala Trees; and Sana Krasikov, whose The Patriots was published by Granta earlier this year. Other writers chosen for the list with just one novel behind them are Claire Vaye Watkins, author of Gold Fame Citrus (riverrun); Anthony Marra, author of A Constellation of Vital Phenomena (Vintage); Emma Cline, author of The Girls (Chatto & Windus); and Yaa Gyasi, whose debut Homegoing was published by Viking earlier this year.

From left: Ben Lerner, Emma Cline and Yaa Gyasi

Debut novelists who have not yet been published in the UK are Mark Doten, author of "utterly original and blackly comic" The Infernal (published in the US by Graywolf); Halle Butler, the Chicago-based author of "feel-bad book" of 2015 Jillian (published by Curbside in the US); and Esme Weijun Wang, author of The Border of Paradise (published by Unnamed Press in the US).

The prestigious list also names short story writers Greg Jackson, whose debut collection Prodigals was published by Granta last year and Jen George, whose 2016 collection The Babysitter at Rest was released by Dorothy, a publishing project in the US.

Also named are Joshua Cohen, whose novel Moving Kings is forthcoming from Fitzcarraldo Editions; Lauren Groff, whose fourth novel Fates and Furies (William Heinemann) was chosen as one of President Obama's favorite books; Garth Risk Hallberg, the author of City on Fire (Jonathan Cape); Karan Mahajan, the author of The Association of Small Bombs (Chatto); Dinaw Mengestu, whose most recent novel All Our Names was published by Sceptre; Otessa Moshfegh; and three more writers published by Granta: Ben Lerner, whose most recent novel was 10:04; Catherine Lacey, whose second novel The Answers will be published by Granta this year; and Jesse Ball, whose forthcoming novel Census will be published by Granta in 2018. 

Every 10 years Granta magazine publishes a special issue of new fiction from the "most exciting" American writers under the age of 40. Granta 139: Best of Young American Novelists 3 will be published internationally on 4th May, and will feature new work from each of the selected novelists.

The novelists named on the 2007 list included Jonathan Safran Foer, Nicole Krauss, Akhil Sharma, Anthony Doerr, Nell Freudenberger, Gary Shteyngart and Yiyun Li.

From left: Dinaw Mengestu, Lauren Groff and Garth Risk Hallberg