Join us on Thursday, August 23rd with New York Times bestselling author Naomi Novik as she discusses her new book, Spinning Silver! A fresh and imaginative retelling of the Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale from the bestselling author of Uprooted, which was hailed as “a very enjoyable fantasy with the air of a modern classic” by The New York Times Book Review.
Spinning Silver follows Miryem, the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders–but her father is not a very good one. Free to lend and reluctant to collect, he has left his family on the edge of poverty–until Miryem intercedes. Hardening her heart, she sets out to retrieve what is owed, and soon gains a reputation for being able to turn silver into gold. But when an ill-advised boast brings her to the attention of the Staryk, the cold creatures who haunt the wood, nothing will be the same again. For words have power, and the fate of a kingdom will be forever altered by the challenge she is issued.
Channeling the heart of the classic fairy tale, Novik deftly interweaves six distinct narrative voices–each learning valuable lessons about sacrifice, power and love–into a rich, multilayered fantasy that readers will want to return to again and again.
“A book as cool and mysterious as a winter’s night, with two marvelous heroines at its heart. Spinning Silver pits the cold of endless winter against the fires of duty, love, and sacrifice. I couldn’t put it down.”—Katherine Arden, New York Times bestselling author of The Bear and the Nightingale
“Naomi Novik knows how to weave words into magic, and Spinning Silverenchants the reader from the first page. This magnificent tale of three courageous young women who find the power to change their fates will catch you in its spell and linger long after the last chapter is read.”—Christina Henry, nationally bestselling author of The Mermaid
NAOMI NOVIK received the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer at the 2007 World Science Fiction Convention. In 2016 she won the Nebula Award for best novel for Uprooted. An avid reader of fantasy literature, Novik is also a history buff with a particular interest in the Napoleonic era and a fondness for the work of Patrick O’Brian and Jane Austen. In 2011 she published her first graphic novel, Will Supervillains Be on the Final? She lives in New York City with her family and six computers.
Join in on Monday, September 10th, for an evening with Jennifer Baker, editor of Everyday People: The Color of Life. Jennifer will be joined by Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond and Glendaliz Camacho who are both contributors to the anthology. In the tradition of Best American Short Stories comes Everyday People: The Color of Life, a dazzling collection of contemporary short fiction.
Join Manzoor Ahtesham as he discusses The Tale of the Missing Man (Dastan-e Lapata), winner of the Global Humanities Translation Prize. Manzoor will be joined by co-translators Jason Grunebaum and Ulrike Stark.
The Tale of the Missing Man (Dastan-e Lapata) is a milestone in Indo-Muslim literature. A refreshingly playful novel, it explores modern Muslim life in the wake of the 1947 partition of India and Pakistan. Zamir Ahmad Khan suffers from a mix of alienation, guilt, and postmodern anxiety that defies diagnosis. His wife abandons him to his reflections about his childhood, writing, ill-fated affairs, and his hometown, Bhopal, as he attempts to unravel the lies that brought him to his current state (while weaving new ones).
A novel of a heroic quest gone awry, The Tale of the Missing Man artfully twists the conventions of the Urdu romance, or dastan, tradition, where heroes chase brave exploits that are invariably rewarded by love. The hero of Ahtesham’s tale, living in the fast-changing city of Bhopal during the 1970s and ’80s, suffers an identity crisis of epic proportions: he is lost, missing, and unknown both to himself and to others. The result is a twofold quest in which the fate of protagonist and writer become inextricably and ironically linked. The lost hero sets out in search of himself, while the author goes in search of the lost hero, his fictionalized alter ego.
New York magazine cited the book as one of “the world’s best-untranslated novels.” In addition to raising important questions about Muslim identity, Ahtesham offers a very funny and thoroughly self-reflective commentary on the modern author’s difficulties in writing an autobiography.