Summer Sale! Save 20% today and get access to all our member benefits.

Margaret Cezair-Thompson biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Read-Alikes

Margaret Cezair-Thompson

Margaret Cezair-Thompson

Margaret Cezair-Thompson Biography

Margaret Cezair-Thompson was born in Jamaica, West Indies; she attended St Andrews High School for Girls, a long-established government-subsidized school that has produced many of Jamaican's most prominent women.  She also spent a year at a Roman Catholic boarding school in the countryside called Servite Convent of the Assumption School for Girls—which was a bit like the school she describes Ida as attending in The Pirate's Daughter.  She was expelled after a year and returned happily to St Andrews.

She came of age as Jamaica emerged from being a British colony to being an independent nation.  She left Jamaica at nineteen years old to attend Barnard College in New York where she received a B.A. in English.  She received her Ph.D. in English from the City University of New York with a dissertation on V.S. Naipaul. Since 1990, she has taught literature and creative writing at Wellesley College. 

Her son was born in 1999, the same year that her first book, The True History of Paradise, was published. She's also published short fiction, essays, reviews, and interviews in various magazines.  Her first screenplay, Photo Finish, about a Jamaican-American athlete, was sold to Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo Productions in 1994 (now Harpo-Disney). The True History of Paradise was selected as one of six finalists for the Dublin International IMPAC Award.

Her interests include movies, Victorian and Modern British fiction and poetry, Caribbean and British colonial history, postcolonial literature and film (especially related to the Caribbean and Africa), and Jamaican music.  The authors she returns to again and again are Edith Wharton, Virginia Woolf, Thomas Hardy, Paule Marshall, Ben Okri, Jean Rhys, William Shakespeare (especially the tragedies), Joyce’s Dubliners, Thackeray’s Vanity Fair, Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, Yeats, Wallace Stevens, and the King James Bible.

She currently lives in Massachusetts.

Margaret Cezair-Thompson's website

This bio was last updated on 07/03/2016. In a perfect world, we would like to keep all of BookBrowse's biographies up to date, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's simply impossible to do. So, if the date of this bio is not recent, you may wish to do an internet search for a more current source, such as the author's website or social media presence. If you are the author or publisher and would like us to update this biography, send the complete text and we will replace the old with the new.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Interview

Margaret Cezair-Thompson talks about The Pirate's Daughter, and how she came to write about Errol Flynn in Jamaica.

Why did you want to write about Errol Flynn?
It wasn't so much that I wanted to write about Errol Flynn but rather that once I came upon the setting and early images, he presented himself as a person who had been there at that time. Then a number of things fell into place in my mind: stories I'd heard about him when I was growing up in Jamaica, all that he symbolized, and the challenge of recreating him, not only as Hollywood icon but as a human with human weaknesses and hopes.

How did you research Flynn’s life? What sources did you use?
I read one or two books about him and also his own autobiography. I spoke to people who had known him and/or who remembered the time he lived in Jamaica. I watched his films countless times including the film he made that was set partly in Jamaica (Cruise of the Zaca).

What do you make of Errol Flynn? In your opinion, what sort of person do you imagine he was?
It will sound strange but I feel like I’ve gotten to know him, that I’ve lived close to him these past few years. My son has, in a sense, grown up with Errol Flynn in our home – his pictures, his movies – pirates, sea captains, Robin Hood. What I’ve come to know is a man who made mistakes, who ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Books by this Author

Books by Margaret Cezair-Thompson at BookBrowse
The Pirate's Daughter jacket The True History of Paradise jacket
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Read-Alikes

All the books below are recommended as read-alikes for Margaret Cezair-Thompson but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose read-alikes

  • Austin Clarke

    Austin Clarke

    Austin Clarke was a professor of literature and taught at Yale, Brandeis, Williams, Duke, and the Universities of Texas and Indiana. He assisted in setting up a Black Studies program at Yale in 1968, after which he became the... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Pirate's Daughter

    Try:
    The Polished Hoe
    by Austin Clarke

  • Alice Hoffman

    Alice Hoffman

    Alice Hoffman was born in New York City on March 16, 1952 and grew up on Long Island. After graduating from high school in 1969, she attended Adelphi University, from which she received a BA, and then received a Mirrellees ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Pirate's Daughter

    Try:
    The Marriage of Opposites
    by Alice Hoffman

We recommend 6 similar authors

View all 6 Read-Alikes

Non-members can see 2 results. Become a member
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Join our inner reading circle, go ad-free and get way more!

Find out more


Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: The Ballad of Jacquotte Delahaye
    The Ballad of Jacquotte Delahaye
    by Briony Cameron
    Our titular heroine's story begins in Yáquimo, Santo Domingo. Jacquotte Delahaye is a young ...
  • Book Jacket: Another Word for Love
    Another Word for Love
    by Carvell Wallace
    "I write about beautiful things because I live in a country that has tried to kill me and every...
  • Book Jacket
    The Flower Sisters
    by Michelle Collins Anderson
    Michelle Collins Anderson's novel The Flower Sisters, based in part on a real tragedy that occurred ...
  • Book Jacket: Craft
    Craft
    by Ananda Lima
    You may have heard about books that are letters to God, but what about books that are letters to the...

BookBrowse Book Club

Book Jacket
The 1619 Project
by Nikole Hannah-Jones
An impactful expansion of groundbreaking journalism, The 1619 Project offers a revealing vision of America's past and present.
Win This Book
Win The Bluestockings

The Bluestockings by Susannah Gibson

An illuminating group portrait of the eighteenth-century women who dared to imagine an active life for themselves in both mind and spirit.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

A W in S C

and be entered to win..

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.