Culture / Thurs 12th Oct / 7:30-9 pm
Monthly meet up to discuss a great read, along with drinks & good company
"Full of lyricism and power, Paul Harding's spellbinding novel celebrates
the hopes, dreams and resilience of those deemed not to fit
in a world brutally intolerant of difference" - The Booker Prizes
Inspired by historical events, This Other Eden tells the story of Apple Island: an enclave off the coast of the United States where castaways - in flight from society and its judgment - have landed and built a home.
In 1792, formerly enslaved Benjamin Honey arrives on the island with his Irish wife, Patience, to make a life together there. More than a century later, the Honeys’ descendants remain, alongside an eccentric, diverse band of neighbours.
Then comes the intrusion of ‘civilization’: officials determine to ‘cleanse’ the island. A missionary schoolteacher selects one light-skinned boy to save. The rest will succumb to the authorities’ institutions - or cast themselves on the waters in a new Noah’s Ark…
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Paul Harding attended the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he studied English, and has taught writing at Harvard University and the University of Iowa.
This Other Eden, longlisted for the Booker Prize 2023, is Harding’s third novel. His debut novel Tinkers, was published in 2009 and won the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the 2010 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize, among other honours. He published his second novel, Enon, in 2013.
He has an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and is currently director of the MFA in Creative Writing & Literature at Stony Brook University. He lives on Long Island, New York, with his family.
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