Trying to pin down Edwidge Danticat as a writer is like trying to encapsulate her maddening, tragic, and beautiful homeland in just a few words. The Haitian-American is the rare writer who can move effortlessly between fiction and nonfiction, gritty realism and magic-tinged short stories and even young-adult fiction. In her novels and nonfiction, she fearlessly explores themes of national identity and the Haitian diaspora, intertwining the two difficult subjects with issues of gender and family relationships. Take, for example, Danticat's second book, Krik? Krack!, a collection of short stories that tells the fictional tales of nine Haitians, exquisitely detailing the pain and brutality of living under a dictatorial government while celebrating the resilience of Haitians. The book garnered a National Book Award nomination, which was followed in 2009 by a MacArthur Fellowship. For her next book, Danticat has taken inspiration from the Magic City. Untwine — due for release this fall — tells the story of identical twin sisters and is partially set in Miami.