Thursday, June 18th: Fiction. Marian Palaia reads from her debut novel The Given World. 7 pm.
Marian Palaia was born in Riverside, California, and grew up there and in Washington, DC. She lives in San Francisco and has also lived in Montana, Hong Kong, Ho Chi Minh City, and Nepal, where she was a Peace Corps volunteer. She is a graduate of the MFA program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she received the 212 Milofsky Prize. She was a 2012-2013 John Steinbeck Fellow at San Jose State University and is a recipient of the Elizabeth George Foundation Fellowship. Her work has been published in The Virginia Quarterly Review and TriQuarterly. Marian has also been a truck driver, a bartender, and a logger.
“Not all the American casualties of Vietnam went to war. In stunning, gorgeous prose, in precise, prismatic detail, Palaia begins with that rupture and works her way deep into the aftermath -- its impact on one person, on one family, on one country. Riveting and revelatory.” -- Karen Joy Fowler, author of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
“In The Given World, Marian Palaia has assembled a collection of restive seekers and beautifully told their stories of love and lovelessness, home and homelessness, with an emphasis on both makeshift and enduring ideas of family. It has been a long time since a first book contained this much wisdom and knowledge of the world. She has a great ear for dialogue, a feel for dramatic confrontation, and a keen understanding of when background suddenly becomes foreground. She is a strong, soulful, and deeply gifted writer.” -- Lorrie Moore, author of Bark