Behind the Book Reading Series: Alex Gilvarry, Amelia Gray, Joseph Salvatore, & Suzzy Roche

March 08, 2012
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Alex Gilvarry’s debut novel, Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant, features high fashion and homeland security mixing in a “peculiar cocktail of themes—immigrant on-the-make, post-9/11 burlesque, sybaritic send-up of fashion and hipster Brooklyn—[that] goes down smoothly.” As acclaimed author Gary Shteyngart writes, “It’s rare for a novel to tread so fearlessly into the political and yet to emerge so deeply funny and humane.  Gilvarry is a young talent on the rise.” Alex has been named a Norman Mailer Fellow, and his writing has appeared in The Paris Review.  He is the founding editor of the web site, Tottenville Review.  He lives in Brooklyn, New York, and Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Amelia Gray’s third book, Threats, is praised by Publishers Weekly as an “innovative debut novel featuring a most unreliable (and compelling) narrator” who struggles to unravel the story of what may be his wife’s death in a Memento-like mystery.  Amelia’s second story collection, Museum of the Weird, was selected for the 2010 Ronald Sukenick American Book Review Prize for Innovative Fiction.  In a starred review, Publishers Weekly declared, “A veteran of the small presses…Gray deserves greater recognition.” Her first book, AM/PM, is a collection of flash fiction.  Her writing has appeared in American Short Fiction, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, DIAGRAM, and Caketrain, among others, and has been chosen as the finalist for McSweeney’s Amanda Davis Highwire Contest and the DIAGRAM Innovative Fiction Contest.  She lives in Austin, Texas.

Joseph Salvatore’s debut collection of stories, To Assume a Pleasing Shape, features characters who are “smart and funny and sad and ridiculously self-aware” searching for meaning through the crucible of sex.  A regular fiction reviewer for The New York Times Book Review, Joseph has published fiction and criticism in The Brooklyn Rail, Dossier Journal, LIT, Open City, Routeledge’s Encyclopedia of Queer Culture, and the anthology, 110 Stories: New York Writes After September 11th, among other publications.  He is a contributing book review editor to The Brooklyn Rail.  An assistant professor at The New School, Joseph founded its literary journal, LIT, and has received the University’s Award for Teaching Excellence.  He lives in New York.

Suzzy Roche’s “charming and agile literary debut,” Wayward Saints – written with a fine ear, humor, and grace – tells the story of the rapprochement of a mother and daughter, an alternative rocker, who both suffered violence at hands of the father.  Along with her sisters, she is a founding member of the singing group the Roches, whose debut recording, The Roches, was named Album of the Year by The New York Times.  She has recorded over fifteen albums, written music for TV and film, and toured extensively for thirty years all across the U.S. and Europe.  Suzzy has been an associate member of The Wooster Group, the experimental theater company based in New York City, and performed with them off and on for years throughout Europe.  She lives in New York City.