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Jamaica Kincaid

Author of Annie John

44+ Works 7,301 Members 144 Reviews 23 Favorited

About the Author

Jamaica Kincaid came to the United States in 1966 as a free-lance writer and is now on staff at the New Yorker. Her first volume of stories, At the Bottom of the River (1983), depicts men and women alienated from each other by conflict, physical separation, or death. The story "My Mother" vividly show more describes the painful separation between mother and daughter; and the stories in Annie John (1985) clearly reveal that the world of the past cannot be recaptured. Kincaid's poetic use of language and everyday images allows the reader to experience ordinary events with a new and heightened sensitivity. Kincaid is a relatively new writer whose works are beginning to receive critical attention. (Bowker Author Biography) Jamaica Kincaid, novelist, memoirist, & essayist, was born in St. John's, Antigua. Her books include At the Bottom of the River, Annie John, Lucy, The Autobiography of My Mother, and My Brother, all published by FSG. She lives with her family in Vermont. (Publisher Provided) show less
Image credit: Embassy of the U.S./Israel (Distinguished American Speaker Series)

Works by Jamaica Kincaid

Annie John (1985) 1,564 copies, 31 reviews
A Small Place (1988) 1,309 copies, 27 reviews
Lucy (1990) 1,127 copies, 9 reviews
The Autobiography of My Mother (1995) 854 copies, 16 reviews
At the Bottom of the River (1978) 429 copies, 5 reviews
My Brother (1997) 422 copies, 2 reviews
My Garden (Book) (1999) 293 copies, 1 review
Mr. Potter (2002) 224 copies, 8 reviews
See Now Then (2013) 213 copies, 10 reviews
The Best American Travel Writing 2005 (2005) — Editor — 210 copies, 1 review
The Best American Essays 1995 (1995) — Editor — 161 copies, 1 review
Among Flowers : A Walk in the Himalaya (2005) 150 copies, 5 reviews
Talk Stories (2001) 109 copies, 1 review
My Favorite Plant: Writers and Gardeners on the Plants They Love (1998) — Editor — 70 copies, 1 review
Girl (1991) 36 copies, 15 reviews
Life and debt (2006) — Writer — 26 copies, 1 review
Party: A Mystery (2019) 17 copies, 3 reviews
My Favorite Plant (2024) 7 copies
Tide (2011) 6 copies
(Boken om) min trädgård (2020) 5 copies
Ahora y entonces (2022) 4 copies, 2 reviews
My Mother 4 copies, 1 review
My Favorite Tool (2007) 3 copies
Wingless 2 copies
Min mors självbiografi (2016) 2 copies
Hermano, Mi (2009) 1 copy
מר פוטר (2003) 1 copy
Mother 1 copy
El meu germà (2022) 1 copy, 1 review
No title (2014) 1 copy, 1 review

Associated Works

The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories (2011) — Contributor — 838 copies, 21 reviews
Wayward Girls & Wicked Women: An Anthology of Subversive Stories (1986) — Contributor — 530 copies, 8 reviews
The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Short Stories (1994) — Contributor — 485 copies, 2 reviews
Onward and Upward in the Garden (1979) — Afterword, some editions — 484 copies, 8 reviews
Writers on Writing: Collected Essays from the New York Times (2001) — Contributor — 449 copies, 4 reviews
Flash Fiction: 72 Very Short Stories (1992) — Contributor — 399 copies, 9 reviews
The Granta Book of the American Short Story (1992) — Contributor — 369 copies, 1 review
Wonderful Town: New York Stories from The New Yorker (2000) — Contributor — 356 copies
The Bridge of Beyond (1972) — Introduction, some editions — 336 copies, 9 reviews
The Best American Short Stories 1995 (1995) — Contributor — 302 copies
100 Years of the Best American Short Stories (2015) — Contributor — 294 copies, 3 reviews
The New Gothic: A Collection of Contemporary Gothic Fiction (1991) — Contributor, some editions — 261 copies, 2 reviews
The Best American Short Stories 1996 (1996) — Contributor — 249 copies
The Best American Essays 2000 (2000) — Contributor — 214 copies, 1 review
Sudden Fiction International: Sixty Short-Short Stories (1989) — Contributor — 213 copies
The Best American Essays 1998 (1998) — Contributor — 194 copies, 2 reviews
Nothing But You: Love Stories From The New Yorker (1997) — Contributor — 188 copies
The Best American Essays 1994 (1994) — Contributor — 182 copies
The Best American Essays 1992 (1992) — Contributor — 138 copies
The Big New Yorker Book of Cats (2013) — Contributor — 136 copies, 1 review
Mistresses of the Dark [Anthology] (1998) — Contributor — 123 copies, 4 reviews
Winter: A Spiritual Biography of the Season (1986) — Contributor — 105 copies, 2 reviews
The Best American Essays 2020 (2020) — Contributor — 96 copies, 2 reviews
The Matter of Black Lives: Writing from The New Yorker (2021) — Contributor — 93 copies
The Colors of Nature: Culture, Identity, and the Natural World (2002) — Contributor — 82 copies, 1 review
Life Notes: Personal Writings by Contemporary Black Women (1994) — Contributor — 81 copies
Memory of Kin: Stories About Family by Black Writers (1990) — Contributor — 68 copies
The Penguin Book of the Modern American Short Story (2021) — Contributor — 62 copies
Summer: A Spiritual Biography of the Season (2005) — Contributor — 38 copies, 2 reviews
The Secret Self: A Century of Short Stories by Women (1995) — Contributor — 34 copies
A Way Out of No Way: Writing about Growing Up Black in America (1996) — Contributor — 33 copies, 2 reviews
Beach : Stories by the Sand and Sea (2000) — Contributor — 32 copies, 1 review
In the Garden: Essays on Nature and Growing (2021) — Author — 25 copies
Babouk: Voices of resistance (1934) — Foreword, some editions — 25 copies
One World of Literature (1992) — Contributor — 24 copies
The Gardener's Bedside Reader (2008) — Contributor — 22 copies
Wonders: Writings and Drawings for the Child in Us All (1980) — Contributor — 19 copies
The Faber Book of Contemporary Caribbean Short Stories (1990) — Contributor — 18 copies
Poetics of Place: Photographs by Lynn Geesaman (1998) — Introduction — 12 copies
Amerika, Amerika bloemlezing — Contributor — 8 copies


20th century (134) African American (97) American (82) American literature (110) anthology (849) Antigua (181) autobiography (43) biography (54) Caribbean (360) Caribbean literature (134) collection (73) colonialism (54) coming of age (48) ebook (43) essay (45) essays (469) fantasy (87) feminism (43) fiction (1,583) first edition (40) gardening (93) gothic (47) horror (141) literature (209) memoir (144) New Yorker (41) non-fiction (350) novel (140) own (71) postcolonial (49) read (115) short fiction (77) short stories (1,035) short story (48) stories (77) to-read (780) travel (118) unread (108) women (119) writing (165)

Common Knowledge

Canonical name
Kincaid, Jamaica
Legal name
Potter Richardson, Elaine Cynthia
Antigua and Barbuda
Country (for map)
Antigua and Barbuda
St. John's, Antigua and Barbuda
Places of residence
St. John's, Antigua and Barbuda (birth)
New York, New York, USA
New Hampshire, USA
North Bennington, Vermont, USA
New School for Social Research (Photography)
Franconia College (New Hampshire)
fact checker (Forbes magazine)
staff writer (The New Yorker)
creative writing teacher (Harvard University)
gardening writer (show all 7)
Shawn, Allen (husband | divorced)
The New Yorker
Harvard University
Awards and honors
Lannan Literary Award (Fiction, 1999)
Paris Review Hadada Prize (2022)
Morton Dauwen Zabel Award (1984)
Anisfield-Wolf Book Award (1997)
Prix Femina étranger (2000)
American Academy of Arts and Letters (Literature ∙ 2004) (show all 11)
American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2009)
Clifton Fadiman Medal (2010)
American Book Award (2014)
Dan David Prize (2017)
Royal Society of Literature International Writer (2019)
The Wylie Agency (UK) Ltd
Short biography
Jamaica Kincaid is an Antiguan-American novelist, essayist, gardener, and gardening writer. She was born in St. John's, Antigua (part of the twin-island nation of Antigua and Barbuda). She lives in North Bennington, Vermont and is Professor of African and African American Studies in Residence at Harvard University during the academic year.

- Wikipedia




A truly heart-wrenching tale of an African American woman struggling with the loss of her mother and the absence of love in her life.
EnchantedCabin | 15 other reviews | Jul 8, 2024 |
Beautiful art and great stories to go with each letter of the alphabet
wellred2 | 1 other review | Jul 5, 2024 |
A coming of age tale set in Antigua in the 1950s, under British Colonial rule, Annie John tells of a girl growing up on the island from the age of around ten until she leaves at 17 to go to England to train as a nurse. Antiguan author Jamaica Kincaid tells a largely autobiographical story that focuses on Annie’s relationship with her mother. As a child, she and her mother are close, but as adolescence arrives her mother creates a distance between them and pushes Annie to conform to societal expectations of a young woman. Annie rebels and feels abandoned and resentful towards her parents. It is not until her departure that she glimpses some of what she is leaving behind and nostalgia for her island home grips her. Life in Antigua is portrayed, not so much in a political fashion, but giving insights into local customs and ways. There is a seeming dichotomy between the Englishness of Annie’s education, focused on learning about Columbus, going to Brownies and Girl Guides, and the island’s traditional ways. Her mother consults the Obeaya medicine woman for their illnesses, hiding her medicines behind those of the English doctor. There are hints of poverty and hardship, with a scene about a neighbour’s child dying of fever. The beautiful surroundings are described with the heat, breadfruit, ocean swims, suppers of green figs, fish and coconut all featuring. A short enjoyable read. The audiobook narrated by Robin Miles was well-paced and created the atmosphere suitably.… (more)
mimbza | 30 other reviews | Jun 24, 2024 |
Bibliography includes: Travels of Wm Bartram, Valley of Flowers by Frank Smythe, Botanical Latin by Wm T Stearn, Oxford Companion to Gardens, edited by Jellicoes et al
and more titles to explore
Overgaard | 1 other review | May 27, 2024 |



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