Tuesday, May 10, 2022
Dewing Hall, room 103
Join the 2021 GLCA New Writers Award winner for Fiction, Gabriel Bump,
as he reads from his award winning book, Everywhere You Don’t Belong.
Gabriel Bump is an Assistant Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Gabriel grew up in South Shore, Chicago. He received his MFA in fiction from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. His debut novel, Everywhere You Don’t Belong, was a New York Times Notable Book of 2020 and has won the Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence, the Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writers Award for Fiction, the Heartland Booksellers Award for Fiction, and the Black Caucus of the American Library Association’s First Novelist Award. He loves baseball, basketball, birds, and long strolls.
Gabriel Bump has written a book that stands apart as a coming-of-age story that ventures into the absurd and is by turns darkly comic. It is funny and tough-minded. The prose goes off like a rocket, powerful, a little shocking at times. The plot is big, but never overwhelms the characters, whose relationships are so poignantly drawn. The novel has astonishing narrative drive and control. Bump writes some of the most piquant, electrifying sentences and scenes. His prose seems self-assuredly his own. He draws characters who are unique and memorable. The Chicago scenes are especially compelling.
Bump positions his main character with a certain narrative distance. Claude exists between the reader and the world, and he understands this. He’s a messenger. He’s a window. He’s an Ishmael. He’s bringing the news from one world to another. While precise and particular to his time and place and telling needful stories, Claude McKay Love takes a position in American literature alongside Huck Finn, Esther Greenwood, Holden Caulfield. I sense this writer going on to write more books.
About Gabriel Bump
Ten Questions for Gabriel Bump with Poets & Writers 50 & Forward Staff