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Author Nana Kwame Adjei Brenyah on Tour for Chain-Gang All-Stars


Author Nana Kwame Adjei Brenyah on Tour for Chain-Gang All-Stars

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Author Nana Kwame Adjei Brenyah on Tour for Chain-Gang All-Stars


Published on March 29, 2023


Two top women gladiators fight for their freedom within a depraved private prison system not so far-removed from America’s own in Chain-Gang All-Stars, the hotly-anticipated debut novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Friday Black.

This spring, join author Nana Kwame Adjei Brenyah on a coast-to-coast tour—check out the full list of dates below!

She felt their eyes, all those executioners…

Loretta Thurwar and Hamara “Hurricane Staxxx” Stacker are the stars of Chain-Gang All-Stars, the cornerstone of CAPE, or Criminal Action Penal Entertainment, a highly-popular, highly-controversial, profit-raising program in America’s increasingly dominant private prison industry. It’s the return of the gladiators and prisoners are competing for the ultimate prize: their freedom.

In CAPE, prisoners travel as Links in Chain-Gangs, competing in death-matches for packed arenas with righteous protestors at the gates. Thurwar and Staxxx, both teammates and lovers, are the fan favorites. And if all goes well, Thurwar will be free in just a few matches, a fact she carries as heavily as her lethal hammer. As she prepares to leave her fellow Links, she considers how she might help preserve their humanity, in defiance of these so-called games, but CAPE’s corporate owners will stop at nothing to protect their status quo and the obstacles they lay in Thurwar’s path have devastating consequences.

Moving from the Links in the field to the protestors to the CAPE employees and beyond, Chain-Gang All-Stars is a kaleidoscopic, excoriating look at the American prison system’s unholy alliance of systemic racism, unchecked capitalism, and mass incarceration, and a clear-eyed reckoning with what freedom in this country really means from a “new and necessary American voice” (Tommy Orange, The New York Times Book Review).

Buy the Book

Chain-Gang All-Stars
Chain-Gang All-Stars

Chain-Gang All-Stars

Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah is the New York Times-bestselling author of Friday Black. His work has appeared in The New York Times Book Review, Esquire, The Paris Review, and elsewhere. He was a National Book Foundation’s “5 Under 35” honoree, the winner of the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award and the Saroyan Prize, and a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Award for Best First Book, along with many other honors. Raised in Spring Valley, New York, he now lives in the Bronx.



Tuesday May 2nd at 7:00 pm ET
In conversation with Roxane Gay

PEN Out Loud event at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture
515 Malcom X Blvd, New York, NY
Event details

Wednesday May 3rd at 7:00 pm ET
In conversation with Jared Loggins

Odyssey Bookstore
9 College St., South Hadley, MA
Event details

Thursday May 4th at 7:00 pm ET
In conversation with Tayari Jones

Georgia Center for the Book event with Charis Books
First Baptist Church Decatur, 308 Clairemont Ave., Atlanta, GA
Event details

Monday May 8th at 7:30 pm ET
In conversation with Dan Torday

Free Library of Philadelphia event with Uncle Bobbie’s Coffee and Books
1901 Vine St., Philadelphia, PA
Event details

Tuesday May 9th 1:00 pm CT
Moon Palace Books
3032 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis, MN
Event details

Tuesday May 9th at 6:00 pm CT
In conversation with Sequoia Nagamatsu

Next Chapter Booksellers
38 Snelling Ave S, St. Paul, MN
Event details

Wednesday May 10th at 6:30 pm CT
In conversation with Dr. Nneka Jones Tapia

Chicago Beyond event with Semicolon
811 W. Fulton Market, Chicago, IL
Event details

Thursday May 11th at 7:00 pm CT
Magic City Books event in conversation with Jennifer Croft.
221 E Archer St., Tulsa, OK
Event details

Friday May 12th at 7:00 pm ET
In conversation with Damon Young

White Whale Bookstore event at Bottlerocket Social Hall
1226 Arlington Ave, Pittsburgh, PA
Event details

Saturday May 13th at 7:00 pm ET
Books & Books
265 Aragon Ave, Coral Gables, FL
Event details

Monday May 15th at 6:30 pm ET
In conversation with Allen Smith

Bookmarks event at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts
634 W 4th St #110, Winston-Salem, NC
Event details

Wednesday May 17th at 8:00 pm PT
In conversation with Tommy Orange

Green Apple Books BOOK-BUNDLED event at The Chapel
777 Valencia Street between 18th St. and 19th St, San Francisco, CA
Event details

Thursday May 18th at 7:00 pm PT
Skylight Books event
1818 N Vermont Ave, Los Angeles, CA
Event details

Saturday, May 20th at 3:30pm MT
In conversation with Hakim Bellamy

Santa Fe International Literary Festival event with Collected Works
Santa Fe Convention Center, 201 W. Marcy Street., Santa Fe, NM
Event details

Sunday, May 21st at 7:00 pm PT
In conversation with Leni Zumas

Powell’s Bookstore
1005 W Burnside St., Portland, OR
Event details

Monday May 22nd at 7:00 pm PT
Elliott Bay Bookstore at the Seattle Public Library Central Branch
Main Auditorium
1000 Fourth Ave., Seattle, WA
Event details

Tuesday May 23rd at 7:30 pm MT
In conversation with Alan Heathcock

The Cabin event at the Old Idaho Penitentiary in the Shirt Factory
2205 Old Penitentiary Road., Boise, ID
Event details

Wednesday May 24th at 7:00 pm ET
In conversation with Yaa Gyasi

Books Are Magic event at The Bell House
149 7th Street, Brooklyn, NY
Event details

Wednesday May 31st at 6:30 pm ET
In conversation with Tochi Onyebuchi   

NYPL event at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library
7th floor event space
455 5th Ave, New York, NY
Event details

Thursday June 8th at 7:00 pm ET
In conversation with Clint Smith

Politics & Prose Bookstore
5015 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC
Event details

About the Author


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