Books All Georgians Should Read

Authors of the Month: May

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Live Author Talk with Kate Elizabeth Russell

Live Author Talk with Kate Elizabeth Russell


May 28, 2020, 7:00 p.m. EST

The Decatur Book Festivall, A Cappella Books and Georgia Center for the Book at DCPL welcome Kate Elizabeth Russell to discuss her new book, My Dark Vanessa. Russell will appear in conversation with Atlanta’s own Joshilyn Jackson, the New York Times bestselling author of The Almost Sisters and Never Have I Ever. This program is free and open to the public. To attend, go to the Decatur Book Festival website to register for the Crowdcast event. A Cappella Books has copies of My Dark Vanessa available for pre-order online. Shipping, curbside pick-up and local delivery options are available. Purchase here. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past. But how can Vanessa reject her first love, the man who fundamentally transformed her and has been a persistent presence in her life? Is it possible that the man she loved as a teenager—and who professed to worship only her—may be far different from what she has always believed? Alternating between Vanessa’s present and her past, My Dark Vanessa juxtaposes memory and trauma with the breathless excitement of a teenage girl discovering the power her own body can wield. Thought-provoking and impossible to put down, this is a masterful portrayal of troubled adolescence and its repercussions that raises vital questions about agency, consent, complicity, and victimhood. Written with the haunting intimacy of The Girls and the creeping intensity of Room, My Dark Vanessa is an era-defining novel that brilliantly captures and reflects the shifting cultural mores transforming our relationships and society itself. Kate Elizabeth Russell was born and raised in eastern Maine. She holds an MFA from Indiana University and a PhD from the University of Kansas. My Dark Vanessa is her first novel.