DMA Arts & Letters Live: Hala Alyan and Patricia Lockwood
DMA Arts & Letters Live will present a free event in partnership with the SMU Literary Festival featuring two singular, critically acclaimed authors, Hala Alyan and Patricia Lockwood, talking about their latest works.
In Alyan’s The Arsonists’ City, the Nasr family is spread across the globe - Beirut, Brooklyn, Austin, the California desert. But when the patriarch dies, they unite in Beirut to save the family house. They all have secrets - lost loves, bitter jealousies, abandoned passions, deep-set shame - that distance has helped smother. But in a city smoldering with the legacy of war, religious tension, and political protest, those secrets ignite.
In Lockwood’s No One Is Talking About This, a woman who gains prominence for her social media posts becomes overwhelmed by what she terms “the portal,” a vast chorus of voices she fears is now dictating her thoughts. As real life and its stakes collide with the increasingly absurd antics of the portal, she confronts a world that seems to contain both an abundance of proof that there is goodness, empathy, and justice in the universe, and a deluge of evidence to the contrary.
Both books offer fresh insights into the power and fragility of human connection in our present moment, befitting the SMU Literary Festival’s 2021 theme: “Turbulence.” Alyan is the winner of the Arab American Book Award. Lockwood is the author of the memoir Priestdaddy and two poetry collections; her previous works have been deemed a best book of the year by the New York Times and others.