BRATTLEBORO – Award-winning novelist Ruth Ozeki will speak with local writer Stephanie Greene this week.
At 5 p.m. on Friday, the Brattleboro Literary Festival will close its 20th anniversary with a special literary cocktail.
Ozeki’s new book, “The Book of Form and Emptiness,” tells the story of 13-year-old Benny Oh, who, a year after the death of his beloved musician father, begins to hear voices . Voices belong to things in her house – a basketball, a broken Christmas ornament, a wilted piece of lettuce. Although Benny doesn’t understand what these things are saying, he can sense their emotional tone; some are pleasant, a soft buzzing or cooing, but others are sarcastic, angry, and painful. When her mother, Annabelle, develops a hoarding problem, her voices get louder.
The virtual cocktail is free and open to the public. Registration is at bit.ly/LitCocktail14.
Ozeki is a Zen Buddhist novelist, filmmaker, and priest, whose books have received international acclaim for their ability to integrate issues of science, technology, religion, environmental policy, and global pop culture into hybrid narrative forms. “The Book of Form and Emptiness” was published in September.
His first two novels, “My Year of Meats” (1998) and “All Over Creation” (2003), have been translated into 11 languages and published in 14 countries. His third novel, “A Tale for the Time Being” (2013), won the LA Times Book Prize, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and has been published in over 30 countries. Ozeki’s personal non-fictional work, “The Face: A Time Code” (2016), was published by Restless Books as part of their groundbreaking series called “The Face”.
Greene’s short fiction has appeared in Nostoc Magazine, Green Mountains Review, Sky Island Journal, The New Guard, and Flash Fiction Magazine. His work was shortlisted for the Lascaux Prize for Short Fiction, nominated for inclusion in the Best of the Net Anthology and for a Pushcart Prize. A collaborator with Vermont Public Radio for nine years, she is revising her second novel (the first being locked safely in a drawer). She lives on the family farm with her husband, writer and artist Marshall Brooks.