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The Art of the Novel





Critically acclaimed novelists Jennifer Haigh and Liz Moore take the stage for an intimate conversation as they discuss their highly-praised new novels, Heat & Light and The Unseen World. In Heat & LightHaigh returns to the fictional-yet-eerily familiar rural town of Bakerton, Pennsylvania, where she explores the achingly human story of Modern America and the collision between big business and small-town families. In The Unseen World, Moore delivers a moving coming-of-age narrative with a science-fiction twist — the dawn of artificial intelligence. Both novels were notable books of the year from various publications such as The New Yorker, NPR, the New York Times, Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal. Lancaster's Meghan Kenny, author of the forthcoming novel, The Driest Season, will moderate the conversation. This event is sponsored by Penn State Harrisburg School of Humanities.

Jennifer Haigh, Liz Moore, and Meghan Kenny will be available to sign copies of their books immediately following the discussion.

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In her fifth novel, Heat & Light,  Jennifer Haigh returns to Bakerton, Pennsylvania, a dying coal town that’s offered a second chance when the natural gas industry comes to town.  It has been named a Best Book of 2016 by The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and NPR.  Her previous books include Faith, The Condition, Baker Towers and Mrs. Kimble, winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award for debut fiction, and the short story collection News From Heaven winner of the Massachusetts Book Award and the PEN New England Award in Fiction.  Her short stories have been published in Granta, Electric Literature, The Best American Short Stories and many other places. A native of western Pennsylvania and a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, she now lives in Boston. 


Heat and Light achieves pure novelistic virtuosity. It’s brilliant beginning to end.” — Richard Ford

“Ms. Haigh is an expertly nuanced storyteller long overdue for major attention. Her work is gripping, real and totally immersive, akin to that of writers as different as Richard Price, Richard Ford and Richard Russo...With this book, she moves one big step closer to being in their league.” — Janet Maslin, New York Times

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Liz Moore is a writer of fiction and creative nonfiction. After the publication of her debut novel, Liz obtained her MFA in Fiction from Hunter College. In 2009, she was awarded the University of Pennsylvania's ArtsEdge residency and moved to Philadelphia, where she still lives. Her second novel, Heft, was published by W.W. Norton in January 2012 to popular and critical acclaim. Moore's short fiction and creative nonfiction have appeared in venues such as Tin House, The New York Times, and Narrative Magazine. After winning a 2014 Rome Prize in Literature, she spent 2014-15 at the American Academy in Rome, completing her third novel. That novel, The Unseen World, was published W.W. Norton in July 2016. She is now an Assistant Professor of Writing at Holy Family University.       


“Fiercely intelligent....Moore evocatively renders the remoteness of even our closest loved ones.” — New York Times Book Review

“Enthralling….An elegant and ethereal novel about identity and the dawn of artificial intelligence, and a convincing interior portrait of a young woman.” — Washington Post

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Meghan Kenny is the author of the short story collection Love Is No Small Thing (LSU Press), and her debut novel, The Driest Seasonis forthcoming from W.W. Norton in February 2018. She has been a Tickner Writing Fellow, a scholar at Bread Loaf and Sewanee Writers' Conferences, and an emerging writer at Franklin & Marshall's Emerging Writers Festival.  She lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. 





“The stories in Meghan Kenny’s splendid debut are spiky, funny, and devastating meditations on the innumerable forms love can take in a life—and how the search for love can prove to be both saving and ruinous. Love Is No Small Thing announces Meghan Kenny as one of contemporary fiction’s brightest new talents, a genius explorer of the miraculous and bewildering human heart.”—Laura van den Berg, author of Find Me