Author, Professor, Thinker, and Playwright

Sharing Stories About Freedom and Redemption


Praise for Yonder - A New York Times Notable Book

“With his handling of Black love, showing how it existed amid the worst circumstances, tender and memorable, Asim delivers a fresh, sweeping, must-read tale.”
— New York Times

“Jabari Asim brilliantly takes horrific details of the Black American experience of slavery and breathes life into them. He adds depth to the nameless monochrome images, offering vivid strokes of color and encouraging readers to commit to a deeper understanding of the lasting impact of being a person held in captivity. . . 'Yonder' is not depressing, just beautifully honest — offering hope and empowerment.”
— Washington Post

“This moving, lyrical book is a worthy addition to its genre, as Asim gives triumphant voice to his own ancestors.”
— Historical Novel Review

“[M]ajestic…Asim demonstrates all a novel can be: soaring and grounded, personal and epic, thrilling and quiet. A wonder-filled novel about the power of words and stories to bring hope to the most difficult situations.”
— Kirkus (starred review)

“A mesmerizing touch of magical realism…Asim vividly captures the daily rhythms of the Stolen’s lives, in which harshness is punctuated by brief spells of joy. As the enslaved embark on a soaring adventure in pursuit of freedom, a gripping and satisfying crescendo caps this lyrical story."
— Booklist (starred review)

“Asim delivers a searing and redemptive story of slavery and survival…At once intimate and majestic, the prose marries a gripping narrative with an unforgettable exploration of the power of stories, language, and hope. With a bold vision, Asim demonstrates his remarkable gifts.”
— Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"[Asim] is a gifted storyteller, first building the world in which his characters are bound before setting in motion their united mission toward freedom...Yonder reminds us that even in despair, love and the human spirit can endure."

“Exceptional. A splendid addition to the library of fiction on American slavery, which—given the centuries it existed—is not as large as it could be. Skillfully wielding a number of literary tools, including a grand way with language, Asim reveals the slaves’ everyday world away from the lash and brutality: the loves, the laughter, the age-old tussles with life. Yonder builds a permanent place in a reader’s mind. Asim is to be applauded.”
—Edward P. Jones, author of The Known World

“Jabari Asim’s masterful Yonder has no doubt set our Ancestors to dancing and rejoicing. A compelling and dazzling storyteller, Asim beautifully captures the depth of their bonds, intellect, and unwavering commitment to each other, honoring the fullness of their humanity against the backdrop of enslavement. This novel made me shout, cry, laugh, and, most of all, believe.”
—Deesha Philyaw, author of The Secret Lives of Church Ladies

“The magic of Yonder is the hope and love and devotion that shine from its pages despite the darkness and brutality that surround its loving, beloved characters. Asim’s story is utterly absorbing. His people have wings; let them transport you.”
—Margot Livesey, New York Times bestselling author of The Flight of Gemma Hardy

“Brilliant! A fresh telling of a story we think we already know, Yonder is wholly engrossing and expertly executed. With beautiful language laced with raw honesty, Jabari Asim has written a novel that I know will forever impact the way I think of the merciless nature of slavery and the enduring power of love.”
—Sadeqa Johnson, internationally bestselling author of Yellow Wife

“Asim is a renowned master of the written word.”

About Jabari

Jabari Asim is the Distinguished Professor of Multidisciplinary Letters at Emerson College, where he is also the Elma Lewis Distinguished Fellow in Social Justice. He has also been a scholar-in-residence at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, an editor and columnist at the Washington Post, and editor-in-chief of the NAACP’s Crisis Magazine, founded by W.E.B. DuBois in 1910. His work has been included in Best American Poetry and Best American Essays. A Guggenheim Fellow, he is the author of 14 books for children and 8 books for adults, including Preaching to the Chickens, named a New York Times Best Illustrated Book in 2016, and Yonder, a novel named a New York Times Notable Book in 2022.