It’s back! First Fiction returns to Changing Hands Bookstore, now at our own First Draft Book Bar.
Three first-time fiction writers read excerpts from their buzz-worthy novels while YOU enjoy happy hour prices at the bar. Afterwards, we’ll open the floor to questions, then enjoy an informal mixer with the authors, who will meet attendees, take photos, and sign their books.
FREE EVENT / VIP OPTIONS
The event is free, but you can also select from two VIP options, both of which entitle you to a pre-event mixer with the authors, all three books, an exclusive First Fiction tote, a free drink from our First Draft Book Bar, and complimentary light refreshments.
EVENT DETAILS → RSVP: free: Entry to the FREE event starting at 7pm. → VIP Package 1: $85 + fees: Admission for one (1) person to an EXCLUSIVE pre-event Meet & Greet with the authors (get pictures taken, mingle, one free drink, and free light refreshments), plus a collectible First Fiction tote, a reserved seat for the event, one (1) copy of THE INCENDIARIES, one (1) copy of FRUIT OF THE DRUNKEN TREE, and one (1) copy of FRIDAY BLACK. → VIP Package 2: $100 + fees: Admission for two (2) people to an EXCLUSIVE pre-event Meet & Greet with the authors (get pictures taken, mingle, two (2) free drinks, and free light refreshments), plus a collectible First Fiction tote, reserved seats for the event, one (1) copy of THE INCENDIARIES, one (1) copy of FRUIT OF THE DRUNKEN TREE, and one (1) copy of FRIDAY BLACK.
The EXCLUSIVE pre-event Meet & Greet (with the purchase of a VIP Package) takes place from 6-7-pm.
FREE PARKING / LIGHT RAIL
- Don’t want to drive? Take the Light Rail! It lets off at the Central Avenue/Camelback Park-and-Ride, which has hundreds of free parking spaces across the street from Changing Hands.
ABOUT THE BOOKS
The Incendiaries by R. O. Kwon
“The Incendiaries probes the seductive and dangerous places to which we drift when loss unmoors us. In dazzlingly acrobatic prose, R. O. Kwon explores the lines between faith and fanaticism, passion and violence, the rational and the unknowable.” — Celeste Ng, author of LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE and EVERYTHING I NEVER TOLD YOU
Phoebe Lin and Will Kendall meet in their first month at prestigious Edwards University. Phoebe is a glamorous girl who doesn’t tell anyone she blames herself for her mother’s recent death. Will is a misfit scholarship boy who transfers to Edwards from Bible college, waiting tables to get by. What he knows for sure is that he loves Phoebe. Grieving and guilt-ridden, Phoebe is drawn into a secretive cult founded by a charismatic former student with an enigmatic past. When the group commits a violent act in the name of faith, Will finds himself struggling to confront a new version of the fanaticism he’s worked so hard to escape. Haunting and intense, The Incendiaries is a fractured love story that explores what can befall those who lose what they love most.
Fruit of the Drunken Tree by Ingrid Rojas Contreras.
“When women tell stories, they are finally at the center of the page. When women of color write history, we see the world as we have never seen it before. In Fruit of the Drunken Tree, Ingrid Rojas Contreras honors the lives of girls who witness war. Brava! I was swept up by this story.” — Sandra Cisneros, author of THE HOUSE ON MANGO STREET
Seven-year-old Chula and her older sister Cassandra enjoy carefree lives thanks to their gated community in Bogotá, but the threat of kidnappings, car bombs, and assassinations hover just outside the neighborhood walls, where the godlike drug lord Pablo Escobar continues to elude authorities and capture the attention of the nation. When their mother hires Petrona, a live-in-maid from the city’s guerrilla-occupied slum, Chula makes it her mission to understand Petrona’s mysterious ways. But Petrona’s unusual behavior belies more than shyness. She is a young woman crumbling under the burden of providing for her family as the rip tide of first love pulls her in the opposite direction. As both girls’ families scramble to maintain stability amidst the rapidly escalating conflict, Petrona and Chula find themselves entangled in a web of secrecy that will force them both to choose between sacrifice and betrayal. Inspired by the author’s own life, and told through the alternating perspectives of the willful Chula and the achingly hopeful Petrona, Fruit of the Drunken Tree contrasts two very different, but inextricably linked coming-of-age stories. In lush prose, Rojas Contreras has written a powerful testament to the impossible choices women are often forced to make in the face of violence and the unexpected connections that can blossom out of desperation.
Friday Black by Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah
“This book is dark and captivating and essential…A call to arms and a condemnation. Adjei-Brenyah offers powerful prose as parable. The writing in this outstanding collection will make you hurt and demand your hope. Read this book.” — Roxane Gay
From the start of this extraordinary debut, Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah’s writing will grab you, haunt you, enrage and invigorate you. By placing ordinary characters in extraordinary situations, Adjei-Brenyah reveals the violence, injustice, and painful absurdities that black men and women contend with every day in this country. These stories tackle urgent instances of racism and cultural unrest, and explore the many ways we fight for humanity in an unforgiving world. In “The Finkelstein Five,” Adjei-Brenyah gives us an unforgettable reckoning of the brutal prejudice of our justice system. In “Zimmer Land,” we see a far-too-easy-to-believe imagining of racism as sport. And “Friday Black” and “How to Sell a Jacket as Told by Ice King” show the horrors of consumerism and the toll it takes on us all. Entirely fresh in its style and perspective, and sure to appeal to fans of Colson Whitehead, Marlon James, and George Saunders, Friday Black confronts readers with a complicated, insistent, wrenching chorus of emotions, the final note of which, remarkably, is hope.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
R. O. KWON is a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellow. Her writing is published or forthcoming in The Guardian, Vice, Buzzfeed, Time, Noon, Electric Literature, Playboy, and elsewhere. She has received awards from Yaddo, MacDowell, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Omi International, the Steinbeck Center, and the Norman Mailer Writers’ Colony. Born in South Korea, she has lived most of her life in the United States.
INGRID ROJAS CONTRERAS was born and raised in Bogotá, Colombia. Her essays and short stories have appeared in the Los Angeles Review of Books, Electric Literature, Guernica, and Huffington Post, among others. She has received fellowships and awards from The Missouri Review, Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference, VONA, Hedgebrook, The Camargo Foundation, Djerassi Resident Artists Program, and the National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures. She is the book columnist for KQED Arts, the Bay Area’s NPR affiliate.
NANA KWAME ADJEI-BRENYAH is from Spring Valley, New York. He graduated from SUNY Albany and went on to receive his MFA from Syracuse University. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in numerous publications, including Guernica, Compose: A Journal of Simply Good Writing, Printer’s Row, Gravel, and The Breakwater Review, where he was selected by ZZ Packer as the winner of the 2nd Annual Breakwater Review Fiction Contest. Friday Black is his first book.
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