Author talk with
Thursday, September 9 at 6:00pm on the library lawn
Join us on the library lawn to hear author Lara Tupper discuss her new book of short stories.
Lara Tupper is the author of Amphibians, a short story collection (Leapfrog Global Fiction Award winner; Leapfrog Press, 2021), Off Island, a fictional re-imagining of Paul Gauguin’s strange marriage (Encircle, 2020) and A Thousand and One Nights (Harcourt and Untreed Reads, 2015), an autobiographical novel about singers at sea. With filmmaker Greg Eismin she co-wrote the screenplay adaptation for A Thousand and One Nights. Her short fiction was runner-up for the 2019 Nicholas Schaffner Award for Music in Literature and her work has appeared in Six-Word Memoirs on Love and Heartbreak (Harper Perennial), The Believer, Nowhere Magazine, The Ghost Story, Dogwood Journal, Epiphany, Zone 3 and other literary magazines. A graduate of Wesleyan University and the Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College (MFA Creative Writing), she taught at Rutgers University for many years and now presents writing workshops and retreats in Massachusetts. She is also a jazz/folk singer who has traveled the world; her latest album is This Dance.
Lara, from Maine, is a strong swimmer. Her parents loved Doctor Zhivago. As an only child, she spent many hours listening to A Chorus Line on vinyl. (She still likes to do this.) She has worked as a clambake waitress, a cruise ship entertainer, an academic, a yogi, a back-up singer, an editor and a music booker. She is a member of the Authors Guild, Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance, LFL (Little Free Librarians) and the BMIFC (Barry Manilow International Fan Club). She has had the good fortune to live in New York City, London, Abu Dhabi, Shanghai, Dubai, Otaru, Hua Hin, the Berkshires and Boothbay. She feels most at home by the sea. She is married to singer-songwriter Bobby Sweet and is mother to seven hens.
Amphibians invites contemplation of what it means to reside in a female form. An amphibious aircraft crashes in Maine, a young girl skinny-dips with her elders, a distraught cruise ship dancer boards a water taxi in Grenada and travellers to Dubai and Abu Dhabi long for familiar oceans. Amphibians celebrates home in a cross-cultural way, and the sensation of feeling not quite right in one’s own skin, on land and near water, at home and abroad.
“From page one, Amphibians is the work of an extraordinary talent. How shrewd and compelling these stories are, as they range from Maine to New York to Japan to the Emirates
and back. Their remarkable gift is to show us – wisely and sharply – the crucial contradictions of feeling in whatever unfolds, from passing encounters to long-held ties.”
Joan Silber, PEN/ Faulkner and National Book Critics Circle Award-winning author of Improvement
“A compelling, wise and beautiful book. Each location feels prickly and alive, like it might lift off the page.”
Ramona Ausubel, author of Sons and Daughters of Ease and Plenty, an NPR Best Book of the Year
“Like a great journey, this collection will leave you changed.”
Porter Fox author of Northland: A 4,000-Mile Journey Along America’s Forgotten Border
“Mobility, adaptability and colorful changes are confronted by the girls and women in Lara Tupper’s nimble interlinked collection, aptly titled Amphibians. Although each memorable story easily stands alone, to seek and recognize the deft connections intensifies the reading experience.”
Terry Hong, Shelf Awareness