I started writing The Other Americans as a way to find narrative order in the chaos of ideas and emotions that were swirling around in me about immigration and exile, alienation from the self and others, families and communities. It has been a long journey, with a lot of ups and downs. By the time I held the finished book in my hands, I felt a sense of accomplishment. Everything else that happened after that has been the proverbial cherry on the cake. So it was especially thrilling to hear that The Other Americans made it onto the shortlist for both the Kirkus Prize and the National Book Award in Fiction. My heart is full.
(Illustration by Katherine Moffett for Vanity Fair.)
Friends, I’m delighted to share with you that the Los Angeles Times picked The Other Americans for its book club this July! You can read an excerpt from the novel, a review by Michael Schaub, some questions for book club discussion, and more at the Times. Then on July 30, I will be in conversation with Lorraine Ali at Skirball Cultural Center. Tickets are available here. See you then!
In other news, I wrote an op-ed about the assault on reproductive rights for The Nation as well as an essay for their Spring Books issue on border walls, immigrant flows, speculative fiction, and John Lanchester’s new novel, The Wall.
I’m wrapping up my book tour this week with a stop in Minneapolis for the Loft Literary Wordplay Festival, where I will be in conversation with Tommy Orange, moderated by Joseph Farag. I still have a few events on my calendar, but for the most part I’m done for this spring.
I really enjoyed talking about The Other Americans to audiences across the country and getting to hear their perspectives on it. If you’re curious about the book and would like to know more, you can find interviews with me in The Nation and Guernica.
I also did a video interview with the Los Angeles Times at the Festival of Books last month, a radio interview with Maggie Downs and Tod Goldberg on their KCOD show Open Book , and an audio interview with Pamela Paul for The New York TimesBook Review podcast.