Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The (Early) Rise & Coverage of Ayana Mathis

Not long ago, Ayana Mathis received the call many novelists and especially their publishers long for. Yep, she got the call from Oprah Winfrey. Her debut novel The Twelve Tribes of Hattie was selected as an Oprah book club selection. Mathis was quite pleased by the news, and so was her publisher Alfred A. Knopf. They increased the print-run of Mathis's novel from 50,000 to 125,000 and pushed the release date up to this month as opposed to January when the book was initially set for release.

Winfrey had high praise for Mathis's novel. "I can’t remember when I read anything that moved me in quite this way," Morrison was quoted as saying, "besides the work of Toni Morrison."

The world of contemporary literature remains incredibly crowded and competitive. Novelists must have an edge, some extra boost in order to have their voices heard and get their novels read by large numbers of readers. The Winfrey endorsement has so far served as that boost for Mathis. The Oprah seal that will now appear on her book ensures that she will receive what eludes so many writers: an expansive audience.

What follows are a selection of articles (reviews, interviews, news articles) featuring Mathis: 

• January 4: 'The Twelve Tribes of Hattie' -- San Francisco Chronicle – Jane Ciabattari
• January 3: Ayana Mathis Finds Literary Success After Years of Uncertainty -- Ebony 
 • January 3: '12 Tribes of Hattie' Scribe Talks Oprah -- The Root -- Brett Johnson
• January 3: Northern Passage -- New York Times -- Isabel Wilkerson
• December 30: 'The Twelve Tribes of Hattie,' biblical and evocative -- The Plain Dealer -- Karen R. Long
• December 22: 'The Twelve Tribes of Hattie' -- Minneapolis Star Tribune -- Mark Athitakis
• December 21: The Oprah Bounce, 2.0 -- Publishers Weekly -- Mike Harkvey
• December 21: The Twelve Tribes of Hattie': Oprah pick is heartbreaking -- Newsday -- Marion Winik
• December 20: Melodrama overtakes 'Twelve Tribes of Hattie' -- Los Angeles Times -- Hector Tobar
• December 19: The Twelve Tribes of Hattie: Why You Should Read It NOW -- Huffington Post OWN
• December 17: A writer launched into orbit by Oprah -- Philadelphia Inquirer -- John Timpane 
• December 17:  'A wise and ambitious debut -- Pittsburgh Post-Gazette -- Judy Wertheimer
• December 16: Ayana Mathis: Oprah Winfrey’s on the phone, and a career is born -- Salon -- David Daley
• December 16: Napa Valley Writers Conference attendee gets boost as Oprah pick -- Times-Herald -- Sarah Rohrs
• December 12: Oprah's Book Club Author Mathis... And Other Iowa Writers' Workshop Alumni  -- HuffPost OWN
• December 11: Greenlight Bookstore FEC Novel Selected for Oprah's Book Club -- Patch -- Caitlin Nolan
• December 11: Oprah’s latest pick: ‘The Twelve Tribes of Hattie’ -- The Washington Post -- Ron Charles
• December 11: Oprah's Second Pick: A First-Time Novelist -- NPR -- Lynn Neary
• December 10: The Wind at Her Back, a Writer’s Buzz Gets Louder -- NYTIMES -- Felicia R. Lee
• December 10: Oprah’s new book: ‘The Twelve Tribes of Hattie’ -- USA Today -- Deirdre Donahue
• December 7: 6 Things Ayana Mathis Knows for Sure About Sticking With It --
• December 6:  Oprah Chooses Ayana Mathis’ Novel as Book Club Pick -- The Network Journal -- Tenesha Thibou  
• December 5: Oprah chooses Mathis debut novel -- Free Malaysia Today -- 
• December 5: Oprah Winfrey Picks The Twelve Tribes of Hattie -- Mediabistro -- Jason Boog
• December 5: Fate’s Cruel Hand Nearly Ices a Heart -- NYTIMES -- Michiko Kakutani
• December 5: Oprah Winfrey picks Ayana Mathis’ debut novel for book club -- Associated Press
 • December 5: Novelist’s Debut Is Newest Pick for Oprah’s Book Club -- NYTIMES -- Felicia R. Lee
• December 5: Brooklyn. author's 1st novel picked for Oprah's Book Club -- NY Daily News -- Sherryl Connelly
• December 4: Oprah's Book Club 2.0's Second Selection Is The Twelve Tribes of Hattie -- 
•  November 20: PW Talks with Ayana Mathis -- Publishers Weekly -- Sara Hov
• October 15: The Twelve Tribes of Hattie -- Publishers Weekly
• October 15: The Twelve Tribes of Hattie -- Booklist -- Donna Seaman

Coverage of books, authors & special topics 

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