Host Ken Jones talks with Karen Russell, author of the new book Orange World and Other Stories.
Orange World is Karen’s fifth book, following the novel Swamplandia!, the novella Sleep Donation, and two collections of short fiction – St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves and Vampires in the Lemon Grove. Swamplandia! was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, winner of the New York Public Library Young Lions Award, and one of The New York Times’ Ten Best Books of 2011. Karen has received a MacArthur Fellowship, that’s the famous “genius grant”, and a Guggenheim award. She’s currently the Endowed Chair of Texas State University’s MFA program, where she teaches in the fall semesters.
Karen was born and raised in Miami, Florida, and now lives here in Portland. Her new hometown is an influence on at least two stories in the new collection.
In the words of Louise Erdrich, Orange World is “a feast of invention and a fun house of surprising wisdom. The book contains a ghost-ship lodge, tourist trade in a post-apocalyptic drowned city, a tornado farm, a local succubus. Karen Russell moves from the farcical to the forbidden with tender conviction. Don’t miss this book of marvels!”
Karen will be a guest on OPB’s Live Wire Thursday, June 13th at the Alberta Rose Theatre in Portland. You can get the details and buy tickets here.
Author photo courtesy of Dan Hawk