In these pages, Laila Lalami brings us the imagined memoirs of the first black explorer of America: Mustafa al-Zamori, called Estebanico. The slave of a Spanish conquistador, Estebanico sails for the Americas with his master, Dorantes, as part of a danger-laden expedition to Florida. Within a year, Estebanico is one of only four crew members to survive.
As he journeys across America with his Spanish companions, the Old World roles of slave and master fall away, and Estebanico remakes himself as an equal, a healer, and a remarkable storyteller. His tale illuminates the ways in which our narratives can transmigrate into history—and how storytelling can offer a chance at redemption and survival.
**PULITZER PRIZE FINALIST** **NOMINATED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE** **WINNER OF THE AMERICAN BOOK AWARD**
A New York Times Notable Book A Wall Street Journal Top 10 Book of the Year An NPR Great Read of 2014 A Kirkus Best Fiction Book of the Year
Laila Lalami was born in Rabat and educated in Morocco, Great Britain, and the United States. She is the author of four novels, including The Moor's Account, which won the American Book Award, the Arab-American Book Award, the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, and The Other Americans, which was a national bestseller and a finalist for the National Book Award in Fiction. Her essays and opinion pieces have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, The Nation, the Guardian, the New York Times, and in many anthologies. She is the recipient of a British Council Fellowship, a Fulbright Fellowship, and a Guggenheim Fellowship, and is currently a professor of creative writing at the University of California at Riverside. Her new book, a work of nonfiction called Conditional Citizens: On Belonging in America,/i> was published by Pantheon in September 2020.