Lauren Groff was born in 1978 in Cooperstown, N.Y., and grew up one block from the Baseball Hall of Fame. She graduated from Amherst College and has an MFA in fiction from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her short stories have appeared or are forthcoming in a number of journals, including The Atlantic Monthly, Ploughshares, Glimmer Train, Hobart, and Five Points, as well as in the anthologies Best American Short Stories 2007, Pushcart Prize XXXII, and Best New American Voices 2008. She was awarded the Axton Fellowship in Fiction at the University of Louisville, and has had residencies and fellowships at Yaddo and the Vermont Studio Center.
Genres: Literary Fiction, Historical, Science Fiction
Series contributed to
Lauren Groff recommends
The Enchanted Life of Adam Hope (2013)
"Strange and powerful....The most resonant love story I've read in a long time."
The Answers (2017)
"Catherine Lacey is one of the most intelligent and brittle and funny writers of her generation. In The Answers she builds -- out of the raw stuff of bewilderment and absence -- a soaring, heartbreaking work that's just on the right side of being nearly too beautiful to bear."
Goodbye, Vitamin (2017)
"Khong is a magician, and we are lucky to fall under her spell at the very beginning of her brilliant writing life."
"A dark star of a book, glittering with mordant humor and astonishing, seductive strangeness and grace. I am a giant fan of Claudia Dey’s wild brain."
The Third Hotel (2018)
Laura van den Berg
"I love Laura van den Berg for her eeriness and her elegance, the way the fabric of her stories is woven on a slightly warped loom so that you read her work always a bit perturbed. The Third Hotel is artfully fractured, slim and singular; it's a book that sings, but always with a strange pressure more felt than heard beneath the song."
Women Talking (2018)
"Women Talking is an astonishment, a volcano of a novel with slowly and furiously mounting pressures of anguish and love and rage. No other book I've read in the past year has spoken so lucidly about our current moment, and yet none has felt as timeless; the always-wondrous Miriam Toews has written a book as close to a Greek tragedy as a contemporary Western novelist can come."
Sugar Run (2019)
"A heady admixture of explosive plot and taut, burnished prose . . . Mesha Maren writes like a force of nature."
Leading Men (2019)
"I read Christopher Castellani's Leading Men in one quiet, sunny, rapt afternoon, and spent hours afterwards just stunned from having been immersed in such a tender, psychologically devastating, and gorgeously precise novel. An extraordinary book."
The Limits of the World (2019)
"Such a smart, compassionate and elegant novel, so deeply invested in morality and the subtleties of families, cultures, and continents."
Rebecca Dinerstein Knight
"In her brilliant second novel, Rebecca Dinerstein Knight cannily explores both the poisons and the antidotes of love, ambition, mentorship, and yearning, and she does it all in prose so lively that I often found myself laughing with pleasure. Hex is some dark and joyous witchery."
How Much of These Hills Is Gold (2020)
C Pam Zhang
"C Pam Zhang's debut is ferocious, dark and gleaming, a book erupting out of the interstices between myth and dream, between longing and belonging. How Much of These Hills Is Gold tells us that stories--like people, like the rough and stunning landscape of California itself--are constantly in the process of being made, broken, and finally remade into something tender and new."
Sea Wife (2020)
"Sea Wife brilliantly breathes life not only into the perils of living at sea, but also into the fraught and hidden dangers of domesticity, motherhood, and marriage. What a smart, swift, and thrilling novel."
"Marie-Helene Bertino's fiction is miraculous: spry and mordant, with sentences that lull you with their rhythms, then twist suddenly and sting. Parakeet is a strange book in the greatest sense: it sunders reality in sudden transformations and slippages, in the depth of its aches, in the beauty it insists upon in the face of violence, and in the powerful joy that Bertino dowses deep under the surface of even the bleakest moments of her characters' lives."
The Dangers of Smoking in Bed (2021)
"After you’ve lived in Mariana Enriquez’s marvelous brain for the time it takes to read The Dangers of Smoking in Bed, the known world feels ratcheted a few degrees off-center. Enriquez’s stories are smoky, carnal, and dazzling."
Milk Blood Heat (2021)
Dantiel W Moniz
"Dantiel W. Moniz sings of Florida, girlhood, family, loss, and the glorious, ecstatic, devastating human body. A gorgeous debut from a wickedly talented new writer."
Infinite Country (2021)
"Patricia Engel is a wonder; her novels are marvels of exquisite control and profound and delicately evoked feeling. Infinite Country knocked me out with its elegant and lucid deconstruction of yearning, family, belonging, and sacrifice. This is a book that speaks into the present moment with an oracle's devastating coolness and clarity."
Unsettled Ground (2021)
"So sharply, so utterly brilliant that I found myself holding my breath while reading it, dazzled by Fuller's mastery and precision. Not since Flaubert's A Simple Heart have I encountered a narrative that shows, with such clear and patient fury, how breathtaking vulnerability can come from poverty, pride, and helpless family love."
Embassy Wife (2021)
"Embassy Wife is such a swift and delicious novel that a reader can be forgiven for looking up halfway through the book with the slow-dawning realization that all along, underneath this mordant farce, Katie Crouch had some sharp, urgent and intricate things to say about colonization and race, privilege and power, and the often explosive intersection of all of these things in today's Namibia. It is a fascinating novel, and beautifully told."
All's Well (2021)
"Wild and exhilarating and so fresh it takes your breath away, All's Well is an utterly delicious novel of pain and vitality, Shakespeare and the uncanny, and our own subtle moral failures when we brush up against the pain of others. Mona Awad's talent is so vital that it absolutely roars out of her."
Today a Woman Went Mad in the Supermarket (2021)
"Today a Woman Went Mad in the Supermarket is electric: with wit, with rage, with grief, with the kind of prose that makes you both laugh and thrill to the darker, spikier emotions just barely visible under the bright surface. What a wonderful collection of stories."
How to Wrestle a Girl (2021)
"This collection of extremely short stories builds its power as it goes along . . . I love how Blackburn lets the rawness into her voice in a number of the stories, many of which push against gender norms and expectations of sexual desire."
White on White (2021)
"Marvelous, as elegant as an opaque sheet of ice that belies the swift and turbulent waters beneath."
Mouth to Mouth (2022)
"Antoine Wilson's Mouth to Mouth is sleek, swift, and graceful, an agile novel of ideas with unexpectedly sharp teeth."
Strangers I Know (2022)
"Playful, looping, atmospheric and funny, Strangers I Know is a singular achievement, one of those rare books that expanded my understanding of what a novel can do. Claudia Durastanti is an absolutely thrilling writer."
Very Cold People (2022)
"Very Cold People knocked me to my knees. So precise, so austere, so elegant, this story is devastatingly familiar to those of us who know the loneliness of growing up in a place of extreme emotional restraint. Manguso is one of my favorite writers, and this book is a revelation."
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