Library Rock's Backpages

Tribal War, CIA, Dons & Drugs: Marlon James' A Brief History of Seven Killings

Paul Bradshaw, Ancient to Future, 15 July 2015

ONE EVENING, as I left the home of friend and fellow scribbler, Neil Spencer, he thrust a weighty tome into my hands and said, "You need read this but I want it back after." The book was A Brief History Of Seven Killings by Marlon James. I'd read James' first novel John Crow's Devil – a deranged and dark tale of spiritual combat in a remote Jamaican hamlet – and had recently toyed with reading his award winning second book, The Book Of Night Women – "a devastating epic of savage history, relentless oppression, and souls that refuse to be shackled". As I weighed A Brief History Of Seven Killings in my hand I knew I was about to be immersed no holds barred account of the most violent era in Jamaica's post slavery history.

Total word count of piece: 1930


Becoming a member is easy. Membership gives you access to all the thousands of articles in the library.

Click here to go to Subscribe page.

Click here for academic and other group subscriptions.