Till I’m Laid To Rest


In this compelling novel, Till I’m Laid To Rest by Garfield Ellis’ , we meet Shirley Temple Brown a young woman who has survived some of the hardest social and political times Jamaica has seen. But now she is finally tired of just surviving, she wants to thrive and she knows she must leave Jamaica in order to do so.

She makes the decision to leave Jamaica for a new start in Miami, USA. Not long after arriving in the city, she begins to see what the glare of the sun and the bright lights have kept hidden: elderly American retirees living out their last days in the warmth and comfort their youth never afforded them, while being cared for by complete strangers; drug dealers hungry for their slice of the American dream, sexual predators, con artists and murderers.

Alone in a place where standing still is sure death sentence, Shirley is determined to succeed or be laid to rest!

About the Author

Garfield grew up in Jamaica, the eldest of nine children. He studied marine engineering, management and public relations in Jamaica and he completed his Master of Fine Arts degree at the University of Miami, as a James Michener Fellow.

He is the author of four other books: Flaming Hearts, Wake Rasta, Such As I Have and For Nothing at All . His work has appeared in several international journals, including; Callaloo, Calabash, the Caribbean writer, Obsidian III, Small Axe and Anthurium. He is a two-time winner of the Una Marson Prize for adult literature; has twice won the Canute A. Brodhurst prize for fiction and the 1990 Heinemann/Lifestyle short story competition.

Till I’m laid to Rest (in manuscript form) was the 1999 winner of the Una Marson Award for Adult Fiction.

Here is what others say about Till I’m Laid to Rest:

“Ellis writes with grace and power.” – George Lammaing

“This story reveals much about the culture of poverty, human nature and survival … The author handles contemporary social issues with such skill that there is no detraction from overall enjoyment. The proverb ‘stealing from thieves makes God laugh’ comes alive in the events. The author’s sense of time and place is powerful and convincing.” – Jennifer Amoah

“Where this story is original is the way it weaves a love story with someone who is involved in illegal activities and a woman torn between whether to stay with him or leave.” – Sarah Kibaalya

“It is clear that these characters want the same things those who continue to leave their homes, families, communities and even their countries want: the chance to improve their futures. What separates us from these characters is the lengths to which they are prepared to go in order to improve their circumstances.” – Patricia J. Saunders

“Garfield Ellis makes us see and hear people distinctly. In scene after scene character and tension are communicated in nicely nuanced dialogue.” -Mervyn Morris

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