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Lesley Arimah Book Launch: What It Means When A Man Falls From the Sky

Date: 4/26/17

Location: The Loft at Open Book (Performance Hall)

Day of the Week: Wednesday

Time: 7:00 - 9:00 pm

• Regular: $10.00
• Member: $5.00

The Loft presents Lesley Nneka Arimah, author of the new collection What It Means When a Man Falls from the Sky. Lesley will be joined in conversation by Sugi Ganeshananthan.

Advanced tickets guarantee a general admission seat and help cover the Loft's costs to host the event. Pay-what-you-can tickets are available at the door 30 minutes prior to the event on a first-come, first-served basis. No one turned away for lack of funds. Doors open 30 minutes before the event. Seating is general admission (not assigned).

Lesley Nneka Arimah’s first story in the New Yorker—about a doll woven from hair who comes to life—was a finalist for a National Magazine Award. Her story in Granta about a father grappling with how to best raise his daughter won the 2015 African Commonwealth Prize. And a story about a young woman who has the ability to see people’s sadness was a finalist for the 2016 Caine Prize. Whimsically beautiful and delightfully strange, Arimah’s inventive and sharply observed stories have amassed a devoted following of readers. So it is a great pleasure to introduce you to this singular and exuberant voice in Arimah’s dazzling debut collection.

Lesley Arimah emigrated from Nigeria to Louisiana at the age of thirteen, a disorienting transition that left her keenly attuned to the shockwaves set in motion by displacement. The powerful twelve stories in this collection embrace magical realism while deploying a deeply empathetic understanding of character and place. With her intimate yet universal portrayals of homeland and exile, of mothers molding daughters and young women trying to steer their own course, Arimah explores the struggle to navigate conflicting cultures and to reconcile conflicting desires and needs. At once playfully subversive and resonant with loss, this collection presents a prodigious talent with a remarkable career ahead of her.

Lesley Arimah describes her collection as “a book that interrogates the Nigerian experience, exploring the past, present and future.” What It Means When a Man Falls from the Sky joins a proud and essential Riverhead publishing tradition of bringing attention to voices from around the world. It also continues, in company with Junot Diaz’s Drown and Helen Oyeyemi’s What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours, among others, our long and stellar tradition of break-out short fiction.

Sugi Ganeshananthan debut novel, Love Marriage (Random House), was named one of Washington Post Book World’s Best of 2008 and long-listed for the Orange Prize. The book, set in Sri Lanka and its diasporas, was translated into several languages. Her journalism has appeared in the New York Times, Columbia Journalism Review, The Washington Post, and The Atlantic, among others. A recipient of support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, she teaches in the MFA program at the University of Minnesota, and has been visiting faculty at the University of Michigan and the Iowa Writers' Workshop. She is at work on a second novel, excerpts of which have been published in Granta, Ploughshares, and Best American Nonrequired Reading 2014.

Pricing Option: $10.00 (Non-Member Price)