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Joan Silber

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Joan Silber is the author of three previous books. She won the PEN/Hemingway Award for her first novel, HOUSEHOLD WORDS, and has received grants from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. Her short fiction has appeared in the New Yorker, Ploughshares, the Paris Review, and other magazines. She lives in New York City and teaches writing at Sarah Lawrence College.

Genres: Literary Fiction
National Book Award for Fiction Best Book nominee (2004) : Ideas of Heaven: A Ring of Stories
PEN/Faulkner Award for fiction Best Book nominee (2014) : Fools
PEN/Faulkner Award for fiction Best Book winner (2018) : Improvement

Joan Silber recommends
Tales from the Town of Widows (2007)
James Cañón
"Like his villagers, James Cañón has built a new world on an old - a realigned literary landscape, with new sex roles, new stubbornness, new glory, and new wreckage. A much-loved tradition of Colombian fiction has been gorgeously re-imagined."
The Edge of Eden (2009)
Helen Benedict
"A wonderful novel and a true page-turner, a vivid story."
What You See in the Dark (2011)
Manuel Muñoz
"How beautifully the pieces of this book fit together, and how radically original it is."
I Knew You'd Be Lovely (2011)
Alethea Black
"What smart, memorable, inventive stories these are - skilled, insightful, full of heart."
Gateway to the Moon (2018)
Mary Morris
"It’s a great joy when a novel so rich in history is also a total page-turner. Gateway to the Moon connects and illuminates, as we see the centuries-long trail of those who survived the Spanish Inquisition through disguise and adaptation. A wonderful book, remarkable in its knowledge and a terrific story."
The Garden Party (2018)
Grace Dane Mazur
"This is a wonderful book. Set at a wedding rehearsal dinner in a garden full of secrets, the story lets us watch time spilling out its chances on an intensely thoughtful cast of characters. And it leaves the reader with the remarkable sensation that happiness is not in contradiction with intelligence."
His Favorites (2018)
Kate Walbert
"The writing is so beautiful and exact—so startling in every sentence—that His Favorites took me way past what I thought I knew. This is a novel that shines with a laser beam, lighting what needs to be lit."
The Peacock Feast (2019)
Lisa Gornick
"The Peacock Feast is a dazzling panorama of a novel--moving from a Tiffany mansion to a gardener's tenement apartment to a sixties' commune to a death row unit to an old woman's beautifully decorated last room. The forces of social history and the forces of personal trauma weave the remarkable plot, and readers will be left applauding."
Man of My Time (2020)
Dalia Sofer
"With Iran so intensely before us, Man of My Time does what only fiction can do. We are inside the mind of a man whose choices keep stunning us, in the violence of politics and in the intimacy of family. A masterful novel, eye-opening in its tale of the multiplying costs of betrayal."
The Pelton Papers (2020)
Mari Coates
"The Pelton Papers is an extraordinary book. Like its subject, Agnes Pelton, it avoids the obvious at every turn. I loved accompanying her through the first half of the twentieth century to her own visionary modernism as a painter. It’s the skill of this novel to make her life of contradictions?solitary, social, ignored, glorified?the quietly fabulous tale that it is."
More Miracle Than Bird (2020)
Alice Miller
"Only a wildly gifted novelist could give us this terrific tale of Georgie Hyde-Lees and her sometime suitor, the much older poet W. B. Yeats. Written with superb emotional rightness."
With or Without You (2020)
Caroline Leavitt
"What a compelling, wonderful read this book is. With or Without You asks the great question of what happens to a long-loving couple if one of them changes utterly. This novel gives us high drama while keeping the fairest possible view of the messy lives of these characters. Another triumph for Caroline Leavitt."
The Sun Collective (2020)
Charles Baxter
"What a spectacular book this is. A parable for our ominous times, it has revolution, murder, young love, magic, and marital squabbling in its pages—a novel of ideas in sly and modest Baxter form. Quite amazing."
A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself (2021)
Peter Ho Davies
"Peter Ho Davies has long written brilliantly about accidents of culpability and their winding trails. In A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself he has given us a stunning novel of family life, scrupulous and astute, full of home-truths in every sense. Another triumph by an author whose books I love."

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