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Powell's Books Presents Nell Zink in Conversation With Justin Taylor
From Nell Zink, one of America’s most original voices, comes Avalon (Knopf), a profound and singular story about a young woman searching for her place in the world. Bran’s Southern California upbringing is anything but traditional. After her mother joins a Buddhist colony, Bran is raised by her “common-law stepfather” on Bourdon Farms — a plant nursery that doubles as a cover for a biker gang. She spends her days tending plants, slogging through high school, and imagining what life could be if she had been born to a different family. And then she meets Peter, a beautiful, troubled, and charming train wreck of a college student from the East Coast, who launches his teaching career by initiating her into the world of literature and aesthetics. As the two begin a volatile and ostensibly doomed long-distance relationship, Bran searches for meaning in her own surroundings — attending disastrous dance recitals, house-sitting for strangers, and writing scripts for student films. She knows how to survive, but her happiness depends on learning to call the shots. Exceedingly rich, ecstatically dark, and delivered with masterful humor, Avalon is the irresistible story of one teenager’s reckoning with society at large and her search for a personal utopia. Zink will be joined in conversation by Justin Taylor, author of Riding with the Ghost.

Jun 2, 2022 05:00 PM in Pacific Time (US and Canada)

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Speakers

Nell Zink
Nell Zink left Southern California for eastern Virginia in 1972, aged eight. After completing a B.A. in philosophy at the College of William and Mary, she worked mostly as a secretary, with stints in masonry, technical writing, and translating. In 2000, she moved to Tübingen, Germany, and now lives near Berlin. Her books include The Wallcreeper, Mislaid, Private Novelist, Nicotine, and Doxology, and her writing has appeared in n+1, Granta, and Harper’s Magazine.
Justin Taylor
Justin Taylor is the author most recently of the memoir Riding with the Ghost, as well as three books of fiction: Flings, The Gospel of Anarchy, and Everything Here Is the Best Thing Ever. His work has appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's Bookforum, BOMB and The Baffler, among other journals. He has taught creative writing in every time zone of the contiguous United States, including (but not limited to) stints in New York, Tennessee, New Hampshire, Mississippi, Indiana, Montana, and Oregon, where he lives in Portland with his partner and their cat, Emma, whose brief but enviable CV includes being the dedicatee of Zink's previous novel, Doxology.