Literary Lives: Bookish Characters and Essayists
11:00 am - 11:45 am
Saturday, November 5, 2022
Capitol Extension Room E2.010
1100 Congress Avenue, Austin Texas

NOTE: Elif Batuman will no longer be joining this panel, due to an availability change

Three new books—two novels and an essay collection—center characters and subjects whose lives are deeply influenced by literature. In Either/Or, by Pulitzer Prize finalist and bestselling author Elif Batuman, Selin’s life is guided by a literature syllabus and a hunt for an answer to the question “How does one live a life as interesting as a novel?” In the highly acclaimed and darkly funny debut novel Vladimir by Julia May Jonas, an English professor faces mounting allegations from former students against her professor husband. And in the Publishers Weekly–starred The Traces, essayist Mairead Small Staid explores the nature of happiness in art, literature, and philosophy—an inquiry and meditation structured around a trip in Italy spent reading Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities.

Moderator: Rose Smith, winner of The Missouri Review‘s 27th Annual Jeffrey E. Smith Editors’ Prize and a finalist for Narrative Magazine‘s 2018 Story Contest
Elif Batuman, Julia May Jonas, Mairead Small Staid, Either/Or, Vladimir, The Traces: An Essay


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