VIRTUAL - Maria Reva - GOOD CITIZENS NEED NOT FEAR

Start: 
Friday, July 10, 2020 - 5:00pm
Location: 

This event will take place on Zoom. Register here.

Maria Reva will be in-conversation with Lara Prescott


A brilliant and bitingly funny collection of stories united around a single crumbling apartment building in Ukraine.

"Bright, funny, satirical and relevant. . . . A new talent to watch"--Margaret Atwood


A bureaucratic glitch omits an entire building, along with its residents, from municipal records. So begins Reva's "darkly hilarious" (Anthony Doerr) intertwined narratives, nine stories that span the chaotic years leading up to and immediately following the fall of the Soviet Union. But even as the benighted denizens of 1933 Ivansk Street weather the official neglect of the increasingly powerless authorities, they devise ingenious ways to survive.

In "Bone Music," an agoraphobic recluse survives by selling contraband LPs, mapping the vinyl grooves of illegal Western records into stolen X-ray film. A delusional secret service agent in "Letter of Apology" becomes convinced he's being covertly recruited to guard Lenin's tomb, just as his parents, not seen since he was a small child, supposedly were. Weaving the narratives together is the unforgettable, chameleon-like Zaya: a cleft-lipped orphan in "Little Rabbit," a beauty-pageant crasher in "Miss USSR," a sadist-for-hire to the Eastern Bloc's newly minted oligarchs in "Homecoming."

Good Citizens Need Not Fear tacks from moments of intense paranoia to surprising tenderness and back again, exploring what it is to be an individual amid the roiling forces of history. Inspired by her and her family's own experiences in Ukraine, Reva brings the black absurdism of early Shteyngart and the sly interconnectedness of Anthony Marra's Tsar of Love and Techno to a "bang-on brilliant" (Miriam Toews) collection that is "fearless and thrilling" (Bret Anthony Johnston), and as clever as it is heartfelt.

"You've never read anything like them"--Elizabeth McCracken


MARIA REVA was born in Ukraine and grew up in Canada. She holds an MFA from the Michener Center at the University of Texas. Her fiction has appeared in The AtlanticMcSweeney'sBest American Short Stories, and elsewhere, and has won a National Magazine Award. She also works as an opera librettist.

LARA PRESCOTT received her MFA from the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas, Austin. She was previously an animal protection advocate and a political campaign operative. Her stories have appeared in The Southern ReviewThe Hudson ReviewCrazyhorseDay One, and Tin House Flash Fridays. She won the 2016 Crazyhorse Fiction Prize for the first chapter of The Secrets We Kept. She lives in Austin, Texas.

Good Citizens Need Not Fear: Stories Cover Image
$25.95
ISBN: 9780385545297
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Doubleday - March 10th, 2020