(HUDSON, N.Y.) – Poet Rebecca Wolff and novelist Andrea Kleine will read from their work at Third Floor Gallery on Sunday, September 27, at 3pm. Both are celebrating the publication of new books: Wolff’s new poetry collection, “One Morning” (Wave Books), and Kleine’s gripping debut novel, “Calf” (Soft Skull Press). The reading, presented by Karen Schoemer, Bookseller, is free and open to the public.
Poet, novelist, and Fence founder Rebecca Wolff’s internal monologue made external in poetry is uncanny. Her musical and darkly funny fourth collection, “One Morning” spans language, culture, art history, love, passion, grief, consumerism, environmental devastation, and the ekphrastic experience of pop and high culture. She experiments with torque, energy, narrative—two steps ahead of herself with the reader on her heels.
Wolff is the author of four collections of poetry, one novel, and numerous pieces of occasional prose. Her first book, “Manderley,” was selected for the National Poetry Series by Robert Pinsky. Her second, “Figment,” was selected for the Barnard Women Poets Prize by Claudia Rankine and Eavan Boland. Her third, “The King,” was published by W. W. Norton in 2009. Her novel “The Beginners” was published by Riverhead in 2011.
Wolff is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has been a fellow at the MacDowell Colony and the Millay Colony for the Arts. In 1998, Wolff founded the influential literary journal Fence; in 2001 she founded Fence Books and launched The Constant Critic website. Wolff lives in Hudson, and is currently a fellow at the New York State Writers Institute at the University at Albany.
Andrea Kleine’s new novel, “Calf,” introduces a major new talent on today’s literary scene. It’s a literary page-turner that brings back the murderous, obsessive era of John Hinckley, Ronald Reagan, Jodie Foster, Mark David Chapman, and its effect on a few regular families in Washington DC, in a story that is at once intimate yet stunning in its apt, sweeping portrayal of a nation seemingly gone violently mad.
Part “Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret” and part “Taxi Driver,” this creepy, unsettling, and absolutely addictive novel is at once a penetrating character study, a meditation on the zeitgeist of the 1980s, and an unflinching depiction of violence.
“Calf” is a mind-blowing, literary page-turner that reimagines two high-profile events from the 1980s: John Hinckley, Jr.’s attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan and Leslie DeVeau’s violent murder of her ten-year-old daughter. Between 1981-1982, Hinckley and DeVeau shocked the nation with their violence. But the country received a second wave of shock when, in their respective trials, both Hinckley and DeVeau were found not guilty by reason of insanity and both were sent to St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Washington D.C., where they met and later became lovers.
These two real-life, ultimately converging events inspired Kleine’s jaw-dropping, spine-tingling novel “Calf”. While the novel is fictional, the story is all too real for Kleine: DeVeau’s daughter, who was Kleine’s childhood friend, was killed by her mother on the eve of her twelfth birthday party.
“If you came of age in the 1980’s, then this coming October it would be wise for you to pick up Calf by Andrea Kleine. After admiring the cool jacket art, you get to roll around in its dueling narrative…. How can you take a moment like the assassination of a President and fictionalize it to the point where it becomes its own fever dream? That is the magic here, and it is really impressive to read… Ms. Kleine lived this story or a version of it and has written a compelling novel about those formative years of her life, which is often hard to look at, and even harder to look away from.” —Three Guys, One Book
“In 1981, John Hinckley, Jr.’s attempt to assassinate Ronald Reagan rocked the nation. And Andrea Kleine’s gripping novel, ‘Calf,’ will rock readers. This is a wonderfully unsettling book about love, loss, and unlikely connections.”—Elliott Holt, author of You Are One of Them
Andrea Kleine is a writer and performance artist whose work has spanned dance, theater, film, literature, and interdisciplinary projects. She has received five MacDowell Colony Fellowships and the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship Award. Her writing has been published in The Los Angeles Review of Books, Everyday Genius, NYFA Current, and on her blog, The Dancers Will Win. “Calf” is her first novel.
Refreshments will be served and books will be available for purchase.
Sunday September 27 at 3 pm
Third Floor Gallery
341 1/2 Warren Street, Hudson, NY 12534
Free and open to the public