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If I Survive You by Jonathan Escoffery
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If I Survive You

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Narrator Torian Brackett
Length 8 hours
Language English
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SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2023 BOOKER PRIZE


‘Dazzling’
GUARDIAN


‘Blistering’
THE TIMES

'A delight' DIANA EVANS
‘Fiction written at the highest level’ ANN PATCHETT
'Hilarious, revelatory' MARLON JAMES

An electrifying, hilarious and deeply moving tragicomic debut novel following a Jamaican family grappling with a new life in the US.


‘What are you?’


This is the puzzled question that greets a young Trelawny growing up in a Miami where his racial ambiguity is regarded with confusion and suspicion. It’s not just his neighbours, his Jamaican parents Topper and Sanya don’t seem to understand him either. Then there’s his stubborn older brother Delano, who is determined to secure a better future for his own children, no matter what it takes.


As both brothers navigate the challenges littered in their path – a woefully unreliable father, racism, recession and even a hurricane – they find themselves increasingly at odds. Will they make it through together or must one brother’s future come at the cost of the other?


Shortlisted for the 2024 Gordon Burn Prize

‘An astonishingly assured debut novel … clarity, variety and fizzing prose’ BOOKER PRIZE JUDGES
‘So damn funny’ RUMAAN ALAM

‘Astonishing’
I NEWSPAPER


'Utterly unstoppable’
IRISH TIMES


What readers say:


‘So good it was hard to put down’


‘Humour, real feeling … totally recommend’


‘So engrossing and entertaining’


‘A must read’

Jonathan Escoffery is the recipient of the 2020 Plimpton Prize for Fiction, a 2020 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship and the 2020 ASME Award for Fiction. His fiction has appeared in The Paris Review, American Short Fiction, Electric Literature and elsewhere. He is a PhD fellow at the University of Southern California and in 2021 was awarded a Wallace Stegner Fellowship in the Creative Writing Program at Stanford University. If I Survive You is his first book and was longlisted for the Booker Prize in 2023 and the National Book Award for Fiction in 2022.

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Reviews

‘Blistering … Escoffery writes stinging sentences’ The Times ‘All of life is here in unflinching detail: the fragility of existence, the American dream and the road not taken’ The Booker Prize Judges ‘Thrilling … With much tenderness in the gulf between father and son’ Observer ‘So brilliant it stopped me in my tracks … Astonishing’ iNews ‘Brilliantly energetic… his talent feels fully formed and raring to go’ Financial Times ‘Unmissable… rare in that it has the heft and heart of a novel, with the refined finesse of the short story’ Irish Times ‘Surges with the symphonic, imaginative, propulsive energy of Gabriel García Márquez’ Guardian ‘A compelling hurricane of a book’ Ann Patchett, author of The Dutch House Profound, tender, and laugh-out-loud hilarious, If I Survive You will knock you off your feet and keep you spellbound to the very last page … A must-read. Maaza Mengiste, author of The Shadow King, shortlisted for The Booker Prize ‘Superb… a much-needed new voice’ Percival Everett, author of Erasure 'This I adore… Sumptuous and astute' Diana Evans, author of Ordinary People ‘An elegant meditation on belonging from a powerful new writer’ Nikesh Shukla, author of Brown Baby ‘A dazzling mirror held up to our identity-obsessed time’ Joyce Carol Oates, author of Blonde ‘A gifted, sure-footed storyteller’ New York Times ‘Like nothing you've read before’ Marlon James, author of A Brief History of Seven Killings ‘So damn funny’ Rumaan Alam, author of Leave the World Behind Expand reviews