Hey, come join me in celebrating the release of the new novel by Jennifer Natalya Fink, in a joint reading and signing event!
Friday Oct. 29
Hub City Writers Project Bookshop
186 W. Main St.
Published by Rebel Satori Press, Fink's The Mikvah Queen is a coming-of-age story with many disco twists. In the anti-everything hippie culture of early ‘80s Ithaca, New York, what rituals can a girl borrow, steal, or invent to make sense of puberty? Jane Schwartz, a lonely, Talmud-quoting, disco-worshipping eleven-year-old girl, builds a mikvah (Jewish ritual bath) in the porta-sauna of her middle-aged neighbor, Charlene Walkeson, in hopes of saving Charlene from the ravages of cancer. Will Jane also save her fierce, fragile self? Out of fragments of disco, feminism, cooking shows, Christian salvation narratives and Jewish law, Jane forges her own theology. The Mikvah Queen offers no radical transformations; it is instead a story of incremental changes and incomplete human connections. Winner of the Dana Award for the Novel and a finalist for the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest, The Mikvah Queen is a remarkable exploration of postmodern Jewish identity, cancer, the confusion and promise of ‘70s alternative culture, and the power of ritual.
Also appearing, D. Travers Scott will read from his recent story collection, Love Hard: Stories 1989-2009, also by Rebel Satori Press/Queer Mojo.
Dr. Jennifer Natalya Fink is a professor of English at Georgetown University, a literacy activist, and an all-around hell-raiser. She is the author of two previous award-winning novels, BURN and V (both from Suspect Thoughts Press), and is the founder and Gorilla-in-Chief of The Gorilla Press, an organization that promotes youth literacy through bookmaking. Nominated for the Pulitzer, National Jewish Book, and National Book Award, Fink is also the winner of the Dana Award, STORY Magazine's short fiction award, and twelve other awards. She is the U.S. judge for the Caine Prize for African Literature (known as the "African Booker"), and has published widely on literature, literacy, and hybridity, most notably in the anthology PERFORMING HYBRIDITY (Minnesota), which she co-edited with May Joseph
D. Travers Scott has authored two novels, the internationally acclaimed Execution, Texas: 1987 and the Lambda Literary Award winner, One of These Things is Not Like the Other, plus the collection Love Hard: Stories 1989-2009. He has appeared everywhere from underground 'zines to Harper's and This American Life, earning praise from the likes of David Sedaris, James McManus, and Craig Lucas. After earning a PhD from the University of Southern California, he currently teaches technology studies, gender, and sexuality as Assistant Professor of Communication Studies at Clemson University. He and his husband live in Greenville, South Carolina.