Close Close

Tenth Anniversary Season of Visiting Writers Opens

The 2015-2016 Visiting Writers Series opens with a reading by award-winning fiction writer Alex Gilvarry on Tuesday, September 22 at 4:30 p.m. in Wilson Hall Auditorium on Monmouth University’s campus.

Alex Gilvarry is the author of the novel, From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant (Viking) winner of a 2012 New York City Book Award. Unveiling two of America’s most illusory realms—high fashion and Homeland Security, his widely acclaimed first novel tells the story of designer Boy Hernandez: Filipino immigrant, New York glamour junkie, Guantánamo detainee. Locked away indefinitely and accused of being linked to a terrorist plot, Boy prepares for the tribunal of his life with this intimate confession, a dazzling swirl of soirees, runways, and hipster romance that charts one small man’s pursuit of the big American dream—even as the present nightmare of detainment chisels away at his vital wit and chutzpah.

Former professor/mentor of Gilvarry’s and author of The Russian Debutante’s Handbook Gary Shteyngart praises Gilvarry’s first novel saying, “it’s rare for a novel to tread so fearlessly into the political and yet to emerge so deeply funny and humane. Gilvarry is a young talent on the rise. Watch him gallop through the mess we’ve made of our civilization with style and panache.” New York Times Book Reviewer Daniel Asa Rose, echoes this admiring that the novel “crackles with satire … You’ll also be twisting a lip upward at the Bellowesque brio of Gilvarry’s language … A left-handed love-letter to America.”

Gilvarry was selected as a “5 Under 35” nominee by the National Book Foundation in 2014 and received the Hornblower Award at the 2012 New York City Book Awards. He has been a Norman Mailer fellow and a visiting scholar at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas, Austin. His essays and criticism have appeared in Vogue, The Nation, Boston Globe, and have been broadcast on NPR’s All Things Considered. His next novel, Eastman Was Here, is forthcoming from Viking/Penguin in 2016. He is the Artist-in-Residence at Monmouth University where he teaches creative writing.

Monmouth University’s Center for the Arts Visiting Writers Series brings the most celebrated poets and authors from around the world (Andrei Codrescu, Colm Tóibín, Adam Zagajewski,) and our own back yard (Long Branch’s own US Poet Laureate, Robert Pinsky) to the beautiful auditorium of the University’s centerpiece, historic Wilson Hall. With our Visiting Writers Series, we hope the audience will experience a renewed sense of their relationship to poetry and fiction, to language, and to be moved emotionally by that writer’s representation of what it means to be a human being, whether that experience is one of joy, celebration, longing, or sorrow.

For additional information, please contact the director of the Visiting Writers Series, Michael Thomas at 732-263-5635 or visit online at