Department of English
Friday, March 28th at 4:00 p.m. in Norman James Theatre
The jewel in the crown of the Sophie Kerr Series each year is Sophie Kerr Weekend, and the keynote event of Sophie Kerr Weekend 2008 will be a much-anticipated reading by Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Jane Smiley. Smiley, who holds an M.F.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, is the author of 11 novels, including A Thousand Acres, which won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1992. She also is the author of four books of nonfiction, including Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Novel (2005). Her essays have been published in Vogue, The New Yorker, Harper's, the New York Times, The Nation and many other publications.
Smiley's latest novel, Ten Days in the Hills, was published earlier this year by Knopf/Random House. A re-imagining of Boccaccio's Decameron set among the Hollywood crowd in the opening days of the Iraq War in 2003, Ten Days in the Hills has enjoyed universal acclaim. "The book is generating early buzz," observed The Wall Street Journal. In a starred review, Publishers Weekly hailed the hot new novel as a "scintillating tale. Smiley delivers a delightful, subtly observant sendup of Tinseltown folly, yet she treats her characters . with warmth and seriousness."The Philadelphia Inquirer praises the author for "delivering a Tinseltown classic." The Los Angeles Times Book Review declared the novel "a blazing farce, a fiery satire of contemporary celebrity culture and a rich, simmering meditation on the price of war and fame and desire."The Times U.K. called it a "highly entertaining yet thoughtful examination of postmillenial America."
Dubbed "the reigning master of social satire" by Elle magazine, Smiley received the PEN USA Lifetime Achievement Award for Literature in 2006.
Veronique de Turenne interviewed Smiley for NPR.
Visit Random House for more information for more information about Ten Days in the Hills.
Click to enlarge photos.
Students pack the stairs to either side of Jane Smiley for the special Q and A session at the Hynson Ringold House.
Jane Smiley answers further questions at a special Q and A session after dinner at the Hynson Ringold House with prospective students and their student hosts.