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Mari Coates with Peg Alford Pursell / Launch for The Pelton Papers
April 8, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm PDTFree
Booksmith hosts the launch party for Mari Coates and her new novel The Pelton Papers. She’ll be in conversation with Peg Alford Pursell (A Girl Goes into the Forest).
PLEASE NOTE: Due to public health concerns around the coronavirus, this will be a virtual event live-streamed on our Facebook page. Please join us!
Friends, neighbors: We are pleased to be able to bring you some of our events virtually while our doors are otherwise closed in the interest of public health. You can still support us in the usual ways: you can make donations; you can buy the book and we’ll deliver it directly to your door; and did you know we keep our gift certificates on file and they never expire? Thank you very much for your support – we’re proud to be a legacy business and a mainstay of the Haight-Ashbury since 1976!
A richly imagined novel based on the life of artist Agnes Pelton, whose life tracks the early days of modernism in America. Born into a family ruined by scandal, Agnes becomes part of the lively New York art scene, finding early success in the famous Armory Show of 1913. Fame seems inevitable, but Agnes is burdened by shyness and instead retreats to a contemplative life, first to a Long Island windmill, and then to the California desert. Undefeated by her history—family ruination in the Beecher-Tilton scandal, a shrouded Brooklyn childhood, and a passionate attachment to another woman—she follows her muse to create more than a hundred luminous and deeply spiritual abstract paintings.
Mari Coates lives in San Francisco, where, before joining University of California Press as a senior editor, she was an arts writer and theater critic. Her regular column appeared in the SF Weekly with additional profiles and features appearing in the San Francisco Chronicle, East Bay Monthly, Advocate, and other news outlets. Her stories have been published in the literary journals HLLQ and Eclipse, and she is grateful for residencies at I-Park, Ragdale, and Hypatia-in-the-Woods, which allowed her to develop and complete The Pelton Papers. She holds degrees from Connecticut College and the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers. Find her online at maricoates.com. Author photo by Lynn Shepodd.
Peg Alford Pursell is the author of A Girl Goes into the Forest and of Show Her a Flower, A Bird, A Shadow, the 2017 Indies Book of the Year for Literary Fiction. Her work has appeared in Permafrost, the Los Angeles Review, Joyland Magazine, and other journals and anthologies. She is the founder and director of the national reading series Why There Are Words and of WTAW Press.
This is a free, all-ages event.