Monday, July 30, 2012

The Audio Series - J. Robert Lennon

Oh yeah, baby! We've cooked up a new feature for the blog.

Our brand new audio series "The Authors Read. We Listen." is an incredibly special one for us. Hatched in a NYC club during BEA week, this feature requires more work of the author than any of the ones that have come before. And that makes it all the more sweeter when you see, or rather, hear them read excerpts from their own novels, in their own voices, the way their stories were meant to be heard.

Kicking off the series is the one, the only, the inspiration behind the whole kit-and-caboodle, J. Robert Lennon! For those of you who don't know, he  is the author of a story collection, Pieces For The Left Hand, and seven novels, including Mailman, Castle, and Familiar. He directs the Creative Writing program at Cornell University

Familiar releases Oct 2, 2012 by Graywolf Press
Photo of J Robert Lennon by Lindsay France

Lennon and I had a great conversation about audio books - more specifically: the Iambik Audio version of his novel Castle and his feelings about hearing someone else narrate his story - at the Graywolf Press booth during BEA that bled over into an after party when we found ourselves face to face again. It's amazing what a little beer and brain-picking can accomplish. 

I'm extremely excited to premiere Lennon reading from his upcoming October release Familiar in this especially-recorded, for-your-ears-only, you-heard-it-here-first excerpt!

The word on Familiar:

*A haunting, enigmatic novel about a woman who is given a second chance—and isn’t sure whether she really wants it

Elisa Brown is driving back from her annual, somber visit to her son Silas’s grave when something changes. Actually, everything changes: her body is more voluptuous; she’s wearing different clothes and driving a new car. When she arrives home, her life is familiar—but different. There is her house, her husband. But in the world she now inhabits, Silas is no longer dead, and his brother is disturbingly changed. Elisa has a new job, and her marriage seems sturdier, and stranger, than she remembers. She finds herself faking her way through a life she is convinced is not her own. Has she had a psychotic break? Or has she entered a parallel universe? Elisa believed that Silas was doomed from the start, but now that he is alive, what can she do to repair her strained relations with her children? She soon discovers that these questions hinge on being able to see herself as she really is—something that might be impossible for Elisa, or for anyone. In Familiar, J. Robert Lennon continues his profound and exhilarating exploration of the surreal undercurrents of contemporary American life. 

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