Macalester's Marlon James wins Man Booker Prize

Author Marlon James
Author Marlon James spoke at the ceremony for the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2015 at The Guildhall on Tuesday in London, England.
Neil Hall | WPA Pool/Getty Images

Updated: 5:30 p.m. | Posted: 4:04 p.m.

Macalester College professor and Jamaica native Marlon James has won the Man Booker Prize for fiction.

His third novel, "A Brief History of Seven Killings," revolves around an attempt to assassinate reggae superstar Bob Marley in the 1970s and its aftermath, which spins into the Jamaican community in Brooklyn. Each chapter is written from the perspective of a different character, sometimes in Jamaican patois.

In awarding the prize, the Man Booker judges praised the novel as being full of the "sheer pleasure of language." The prize includes a $77,000 award, but also an expected surge in international sales.

"Seven Killings" has already won an American Book Award and a Minnesota Book Award and has been optioned for a miniseries by HBO.

The Man Booker Prize is awarded annually to an original novel, written in English and published in the United Kingdom.

Two years ago, writers of all nationalities became eligible for the Booker, previously open only to British, Irish and Commonwealth authors.

James, who has taught at Macalester since 2007, is scheduled to read at the Hopkins Center for the Arts on Oct. 29 and 30 as part of the Friends of Hennepin County Library's "Pen Pals" series.

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