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The Clothesline Swing Shortlisted for Lambda Literary Awards

Posted: Wednesday, March 7, 2018 at 11:14am

The Clothesline Swing, by Ahmad Danny Ramadan, has been shortlisted for the prestigious 2018 Lambda Literary Awards in the category of Gay Fiction. The book is among a group of esteemed Finalists selected from nearly 1,000 submissions.

Published by Nightwood Editions, The Clothesline Swing is a fictional journey through the troublesome aftermath of the Arab Spring. A former Syrian refugee himself, Ramadan tells the epic story of two lovers, anchored to the memory of a dying Syria. One is a Hakawati, a storyteller, who relays remembered fables to his dying partner. Meanwhile, Death himself shares the two men’s home, eavesdropping on their secrets as he awaits their final undoing.

The Clothesline Swing is Ramadan’s debut book in English; he has previously published two short story collections in Arabic. Based in Vancouver, B.C., Ramadan is an esteemed journalist and LGBTQ-refugee activist who has raised more than $100,000 to support LGBTQ-identifying Syrian refugees. In 2016 he was selected as the Grand Marshal for the Vancouver Gay Pride Parade to celebrate those efforts.

Publisher’s Weekly praised the book, saying, “While each story is autonomous, Ramadan’s delicate use of imagery links these narratives, allowing them to reverberate with meaning and emotion.” The Globe and Mail said: “By turns sombre, fantastical, violent and tender, [The Clothesline Swing] is a gay son's conflicted love letter to Syria – a look on the present from a possible future.”

The Clothesline Swing was longlisted for CBC Canada Reads 2018 and is nominated for the 2018 Evergreen Award. It was included on the Toronto Star’s “Top Books of 2017,” the Globe and Mail’s “Best 100 Books of 2017” and CBC Book’s “95 Must-Read Books from 2017.”

Now in their thirtieth year, the Lambda Literary Awards celebrate achievement in LGBTQ writing for books published in 2017. The awards ceremony on June 4, 2018, will be held at the NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts. For information, visit Lambda's website: