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December 9, 2020 @ 7:00 pm
American Gospel: Lin Enger and Thomas Maltman
Books & Books and Miami Book Fair present…
An Evening with Lin Enger and Thomas Maltman
(Univ Of Minnesota Press, $24.95)
(Soho Press, $26)
Wednesday, December 9, 7pm
LIVE on Crowdcast
About American Gospel:
Radically personal and quintessentially American, an intimate drama at the heart of an apocalyptic vision
On a small farm beside a lake in Minnesota’s north woods an old man is waiting for the Rapture, which God has told him will happen in two weeks, on August 19, 1974. When word gets out, Last Days Ranch becomes ground zero for The End, drawing zealots, curiosity seekers, and reporters—among them the prophet’s son, a skeptical New York writer suddenly caught between his overbearing father and the news story of a lifetime. Into the mix comes Melanie Magnus, a glamorous actress who has old allegiances to both father and son. Meanwhile, Nixon’s resignation has transfixed the nation.
Writing with clear compassion and gentle wit, Lin Enger draws us into these disparate yet inextricably linked lives, each enacting a part in a drama forever being replayed and together moving toward a conclusion that will take all of them—and us—by surprise. Set during a time that resonates with our own tension-filled moment, American Gospel cuts close to the battles occurring within ourselves and for the soul of the nation, and in doing so radiates light on a dark strain in America’s psyche, when the false security of dogma competes with the risky tumult of freedom.
About The Land:
A story of violence at the heart of a pastoral landscape, from the author of Indie Next pick and All Iowa Reads selection Little Wolves
Recovering from a terrible auto accident just before the turn of the millennium, college dropout and hobbyist computer-game programmer Lucien Swenson becomes the caretaker of a house in northern Minnesota. Shortly after moving in, Lucien sets out to find a woman with whom he had an affair, who vanished along with money stolen from the bank where they had worked together.
His search will take him to Rose of Sharon, a white supremacist church deep in the wilderness, where a cabal of outcasts await the end of the world at a place they call The Land. Lucien is visited at the house by a mysterious guest, who may not be who she claims, as well as a vast flock of violent ravens out of an apocalyptic vision. At once a mystery and spiritual noir, The Land explores the dark side of belief, entrenched white supremacy in the Heartland, the uniquely American obsession with end times, and the sacrifices we make for those we love.
About the Authors:
Lin Enger has published two previous novels, Undiscovered Country and The High Divide, a finalist for awards from the Midwest Booksellers Association, the Society of Midland Authors, and Reading the West. His stories have been published in literary journals such as Glimmer Train, Ascent, and American Fiction. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he has received a James Michener Award, a Minnesota State Arts Board Fellowship, and a Jerome travel grant. He teaches English at Minnesota State University Moorhead.
Thomas Maltman has an MFA from Minnesota State University, Mankato. His first novel, The Night Birds, won an Alex Award, a Spur Award, and the Friends of American Writers Literary Award. His second novel, Little Wolves, was an Indie Next pick and an All Iowa Reads selection. He teaches at Normandale Community College and lives in the Twin Cities area.