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OPB’s State of Wonder: There There

Sat, Nov 10, 2018 from 10:00 am - 11:00 am
1126 SW Park Ave Portland, OR 97205

OPB’s April Baer, host of State of Wonder, interviews Tommy Orange about his best-selling debut novel, There There.

Tommy Orange’s “groundbreaking, extraordinary” (The New York TimesThere There is the “brilliant, propulsive” (People Magazine) story of twelve unforgettable characters, Urban Indians living in Oakland, California, who converge and collide on one fateful day. It’s “the year’s most galvanizing debut novel” (Entertainment Weekly).
 
As we learn the reasons that each person is attending the Big Oakland Powwow—some generous, some fearful, some joyful, some violent—momentum builds toward a shocking yet inevitable conclusion that changes everything. Jacquie Red Feather is newly sober and trying to make it back to the family she left behind in shame. Dene Oxendene is pulling his life back together after his uncle’s death and has come to work at the powwow to honor his uncle’s memory. Opal Viola Victoria Bear Shield has come to watch her nephew Orvil, who has taught himself traditional Indian dance through YouTube videos and will to perform in public for the very first time. There will be glorious communion, and a spectacle of sacred tradition and pageantry. And there will be sacrifice, and heroism, and loss.
 
There There is a wondrous and shattering portrait of an America few of us have ever seen. It’s “masterful . . . white-hot . . . devastating” (The Washington Post) at the same time as it is fierce, funny, suspenseful, thoroughly modern, and impossible to put down. Here is a voice we have never heard—a voice full of poetry and rage, exploding onto the page with urgency and force. Tommy Orange has written a stunning novel that grapples with a complex and painful history, with an inheritance of beauty and profound spirituality, and with a plague of addiction, abuse, and suicide. This is the book that everyone is talking about right now, and it’s destined to be a classic.

Advance 2018 Portland Book Festival passes available now.

Tommy Orange

is a recent graduate from the MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts. He is a 2014 MacDowell Fellow, and a 2016 Writing by Writers Fellow. He is an enrolled member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma. He was born and raised in Oakland, California, and currently lives in Angels Camp, California.
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April Baer

April Baer hosts the weekly radio arts show, "State of Wonder," at Oregon Public Broadcasting, covering how art is made and consumed. Prior to this assignment, she worked as a reporter and was the local host of "Morning Edition" at OPB. Before coming to OPB in 2004, she worked as a studio engineer, host, reporter and occasional music host at several stations in Ohio. She earned a degree in communications from Ohio State University. April grew up in the Midwest and now lives in Portland.
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