Marcus Burke

Critically Acclaimed Novelist
Longlisted for PEN Open Book
Travels from: Lubbock, TX

“TEAM SEVEN achieves a rare degree of mature and compassionate insight. It is a remarkable first novel.”— Marilynne Robinson

Marcus Burke grew up in Milton, Massachusetts. He graduated from Susquehanna University where he played four years of Varsity basketball. Burke went on to receive his MFA at the Iowa Writer’s Workshop where he was awarded a Maytag Fellowship, an Iowa Arts Fellowship, and upon graduation, a competitive grant in honor of James Alan McPherson from the University of Iowa MacArthur Foundation Fund.

Burke’s debut novel, Team Seven, was published in 2014 by Doubleday Books. Team Seven received a starred review from Kirkus Reviews, was long-listed for the 2015 PEN Open Book Award, and was one of the “10 Titles to Pick Up Now,” in O, The Oprah Magazine. In contemporary American fiction there are very few examples of novels that have portrayed the realities of black inner-city life with honesty, empathy, and storytelling skills. Into that near-vacuum steps Team Seven a literarily accomplished, autobiographically tinged coming-of-age family drama with an undeniably authentic feel for place, language, and character.

Burke was the inaugural Creative Writing Fellow at Susquehanna University, 2016-2017, and is an Assistant Professor in the Creative Writing Department at Texas Tech University. He is currently at work on his next novel.

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Team Seven

Anchor |
Novel

Just south of Boston in Milton, Massachusetts, Andre Battel is growing away from his Jamaican family, discovering genuine prowess on the basketball court, and eventually falling into dealing drugs for the local street gang, Team Seven. But when Andre and his crew fall behind on payments, dire and violent consequences await. Around Andre swirls a cast of characters and voices: Ruby, a hardworking medical secretary; Nina, his older sister; Eddy, his mostly-not-there father; and Reggie and Smoke, the kingpins of competing drug crews. As these individual lives clash and come together, the novel weaves an intricate and unflinching portrait of a black family, a black community, and one young man poised between youthful innocence and ambiguous experience.

The Myth of the Angry Black Man

Novelist Marcus Burke on The Angry Black Man Myth and George Floyd’s Murder

Episode 1.1: Angry Black Man

Honors, Awards & Recognition

“10 Titles to Pick Up Now,” in O, The Oprah Magazine
Inaugural Creative Writing Fellow at Susquehanna University, 2016-2017
Maytag Fellowship
Iowa Arts Fellowship
Competitive grant in honor of James Alan McPherson from the University of Iowa MacArthur Foundation Fund

Media Kit

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