Deep Dives

Deep Dives is a new series of hour-long, in-depth discussions in which we’ll gather to talk about books we love. Each intimate group (with no more than 12 participants) will be facilitated by a member of the PEN/Faulkner community, and everyone will get to join in the conversation.    

Deep Dives will be held virtually over Zoom. Instructions to access each event will be sent upon registration and again 24 hours before. Please read the book we’ll be discussing prior to the event and come ready to contribute to a thoughtful conversation!    

Kate Atkinson, Life After Life

“For nearly two decades, Kate Atkinson has been winning fans on both sides of the Atlantic for her smart and witty detective stories, but her novel, Life After Life, is another kind of mystery altogether… I love this sharply realized, endlessly inventive, and ultimately moving book, and I look forward to exploring what it tells us about the status of girls and women in the 20th century, with side forays into multiverses, the Mitford sisters, and roads not taken.”

Join Louis Bayard, author and PEN/Faulkner Board member, on October 4th from 8-9 PM ET.

Rivka Galchen, Atmospheric Disturbances

“Although she is perhaps better known for her nonfiction work in the New Yorker, Rivka Galchen’s debut novel, Atmospheric Disturbances, is a gem of mind-bending tragicomic fiction, an amalgam of the enviable left and right brain intelligence possessed by this medical doctor who is also a prolific writer… This brilliant, twisty, whimsical, and very strange book is one of my favorite contemporary novels, my copy heavily annotated and filled with post-it notes. Please join me in a discussion of this brainy and fiercely original novel.”

Join Susan Coll, author and PEN/Faulkner Board President, on October 12th from 7-8 PM ET.

Heidi Schreck and Lynn Nottage

“As Broadway is set to reopen, I wanted to look back at two recent successes from the last few seasons before the shut-down. Shreck’s What the Constitution Means to Me is a thrilling, innovative exploration of the ways in which our country’s founding ideas intersect with real lives… I also had the privilege of working on a recent DC-area production of Sweat, a deeply literary examination of the intersections between race, class, and gender in a down-and-out town. No one captures thorny, complex human relationships quite as genuinely as Nottage does.”

Join Gwydion Suilebhan, playwright and PEN/Faulkner Executive Director, on October 18th from 8-9 PM ET.

Elena Ferrante, My Brilliant Friend

My Brilliant Friend is a rich, transportive, exploration of social class, gender, and an intense friendship between two women in post-war Naples. During our time together, we’ll talk about how Ferrante centers these extremely bright young women in a working class community that would prefer them sidelined and how she conveys the complexities of their emotional life in all its terrifying, wondrous, and brazen fullness.”

Join Lauren Francis-Sharma, author and PEN/Faulkner Board member, on November 7th from 4-5 PM ET.

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