New Anthology Supports Fight Against Atlantic Yards
The twenty novelists, memoirists, poets and journalists donating their work to Brooklyn Was Mine (Riverhead Trade Paperback Original; January 2, 2008; $15), were motivated by their commitment to Brooklyn and its future--a future threatened by a development that is overwhelmingly dense, grossly out-of-scale with its surrounding neighborhood and will divide and dislocate area residents....There is a reading on Wednesday, January 9 at 7:30pm at the Park Slope Barnes and Noble (267 7th Avenue at 6th Street) by Jennifer Egan, Susan Choi and Darin Strauss. There's also a reading on Tuesday, January 15 at 7pm at BookCourt (163 Court Street near Pacific Street) by Emily Barton, Darcey Steinke and Alexandra Styron. The full text of the release can be found here.
Taken together, the essays provide a deeply personal view of the borough's rich history, as well as intimate takes on contemporary life. In "Reading Lucy," Jennifer Egan introduces readers to Lucy--a woman who worked at the Brooklyn Navy Yard during World War II and wrote almost daily letters to her husband overseas. Jonathan Lethem's "Ruckus Flatbush" is a wild, dystopian ride into Brooklyn's future, meant to serve as a warning shot to the barbarians at the horizon. In "A Coney Island of the Mind," Katie Roiphe remembers the thrill of riding the famous Cyclone rollercoaster while on a date with her future husband. Colin Harrison's "Diamonds" details Brooklyn's, and his own, ongoing love affair with baseball. And in "You Can't Go Home Again," John Burnham Schwartz writes about the changing face of the borough his father left––only to return when his son took up residence there. With humor and insight these essays draw on the past and present to create a compelling collection––one that is as colorful and diverse as the borough that inspired it, and as generous of spirit as the cause it supports.
"Who is to say what will become of the place, or whether Brooklyn will retain its soul?" asks Phillip Lopate in his poignant introduction. "Whatever happens to Brooklyn," he answers, "its literary soul is sound and robust, and its writers fiercely loyal."
Labels: Atlantic Yards