Tayari Jones (www.tayarijones.com) was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia where she spent most of her childhood with the exception of the one year she and her family spent in Nigeria, West Africa. Her first novel, Leaving Atlanta, is a coming of age story set during the city’s infamous child murders of 1979-81. Leaving Atlanta received many awards and accolades including the Hurston/Wright Award for Debut Fiction. She has received fellowships from organizations including Illinois Arts Council, Bread Loaf Writers Conference, The Corporation of Yaddo, The MacDowell Colony, Arizona Commission on the Arts and Le Chateau de Lavigny ( Switzerland.) Her second novel, The Untelling, published in 2005, is the story of a family struggling to overcome the aftermath of a fatal car accident. In 2005, The Southern Regional council and the University of Georgia Libraries awarded The Untelling with the Lillian C. Smith Award for New Voices. Tayari Jones is an Assistant Professor in the MFA program at Rutgers-Newark University.