This event includes a book signing
June 13, 2018
Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138
This event is free; no tickets are required.
Harvard Book Store welcomes celebrated writer LAUREN GROFF—author of National Book Award finalist Fates and Furies—for a discussion of her latest book of short stories, Florida.
In her vigorous and moving new book, Lauren Groff brings her electric storytelling and intelligence to a world in which storms, snakes, and sinkholes lurk at the edge of everyday life, but the greater threats and mysteries are of a human, emotional, and psychological nature. Among those navigating it all are a resourceful pair of abandoned sisters; a lonely boy, grown up; a restless, childless couple, a searching, homeless woman; and an unforgettable, recurring character—a steely and conflicted wife and mother.
The stories in this collection span characters, towns, decades, even centuries, but Florida—its landscape, climate, history, and state of mind—becomes its gravitational center: an energy, a mood, as much as a place of residence. Groff transports the reader, then jolts us alert with a crackle of wit, a wave of sadness, a flash of cruelty, as she writes about loneliness, rage, family, and the passage of time. With shocking accuracy and effect, she pinpoints the moments and decisions and connections behind human pleasure and pain, hope, and despair, love and fury—the moments that make us alive. Startling, precise, and affecting, Florida is a magnificent achievement.
"Superlative collection—seriously, there’s not a dud in the bunch . . . Groff is an extra terrific writer, as ever . . . Having followed an astonishing, astonishingly accessible novel with such an outstanding, accessible collection, Groff is surely poised to topple the tiny monkeys in charge of deciding that the perceived realm of the feminine isn’t sufficiently deep." —The Boston Globe
"Taken together, the stories have the feel of autobiography, although, as in a Salvador Dali painting, their emotional disclosures are encrypted in phantasmagoria . . . The sentences indigenous to Florida are gorgeously weird and limber." —The New Yorker
"Brooding, inventive and often moving short stories . . . In Groff's trademark zigzagging storytelling style, revelations ricochet between pages—and sometimes even within single sentences . . . Groff, through her own acrobatic style, attests to the benefits of a firm grounding in grammar and vocabulary. Lots of things go south fast in the stories collected in Florida—like marriages, careers and the weather—but throughout, Groff's gifts as a writer just keep soaring higher and higher." —NPR Fresh Air
"Subversive, but quietly; it captures what’s mysterious about the inevitable, what’s bizarre about the inescapable . . . these narratives of young families, divorced couples, and unconventional women vibrate with something new . . . The rains in Florida are biblical, to say the least. The margins between earthen and celestial routinely dissolve . . . Florida suggests that the relationship between humans and our planet—that home none of us chose—transcends the power struggle of dominance and submission." —The Paris Review
Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes
As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.
Unable to attend a Harvard Book Store author event? You can still pre-order a signed book by one of our visiting authors.
While we can't guarantee fulfillment of a signed book pre-order, our authors are almost always able to sign extra books to fulfill such orders.
Ordering a signed book on harvard.com:
- Add the book to your shopping cart and then click Checkout.
- Specify in Order Comments that you want a signed copy of the book.
- Please note: online orders for signed copies must be placed at least one business day before the event. If you are ordering the day of, please call us instead.
Ordering a signed book by phone:
- Call us at (617) 661-1515 and one of our booksellers will take your order. Specify you'd like a signed copy.
- If you are requesting a personalized inscription and/or requesting your book be shipped, we'll need to take down credit card information. If you are planning to pick up the signed book in the store, you can pay on pick-up.
Can I request a personalized inscription?
Unless otherwise noted, we are happy to take requests for the author to sign your book to a specific person, but we can't guarantee it. If you do get a personalized inscription, the book will be non-returnable. We will require credit card information when you place the order.
Do signed books cost more?
There is no extra fee for a signed book!
Do I have to pick it up in the store, or can you deliver my signed book?
As with all web or phone orders, we can hold your book for in-store pickup, or ship it anywhere in the country.
I am planning to attend an author event. Do I need to pre-order a book?
No need. We'll be selling books at the event, and nearly all of our events include a signing at the end of the talk.
More questions? Give us a call!
Harvard Book Store's Signed First Edition Club is a unique way for readers to connect with and create a wealth of great books. Each month, Harvard Book Store offers members a signed first edition of a newly published book, selected for both its literary merit and potential collectibility. Learn more and sign up at harvard.com/signedfirst.
Featured event books will be for sale at the event. Thank you for supporting this author series with your purchases.
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