Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry presents "What Isn't Remembered," with Megan Cummins

September 1, 2021, 7:30 PM

Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry joins us for the launch of her new collection of short stories What Isn't Remembered, in conversation with Megan Cummins. This program will take place on Zoom. Register here:

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“...vibrant collection… lyrical and haunting…  Throughout, the situations are arresting and the images indelible. Gorcheva-Newberry’s luminous prose will remain vivid in the reader’s mind.” — Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“...the book excels at juxtapositions without resolutions, that stretch and linger long after their stories are finished...The stories in What Isn’t Remembered run an emotional marathon. They are virtuosic, bold, and unsparing as they talk about “history and personal experiences, hunger and pain as [we continue] living through them, as though nothing ever ended but coexisted in parallel worlds.” — Foreword Reviews (starred review)

“In lyrical, evocative prose, [these] 16 substantial short stories explore themes of desire, absence, and loss… ...every reader who treasures powerful, surprising, and memorable short stories will find much to appreciate in this stunning first book.” — Booklist (starred review)

The stories in What Isn’t Remembered (winner of the Raz/Shumaker Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Fiction) explore the burden, the power, and the nature of love between people who often feel misplaced and estranged from their deepest selves and the world, where they cannot find a home. The characters yearn not only to redefine themselves and rebuild their relationships but also to recover lost loves—a parent, a child, a friend, a spouse, a partner. A young man longs for his mother’s love while grieving the loss of his older brother. A mother’s affair sabotages her relationship with her daughter, causing a lifelong feud between the two. A divorced man struggles to come to terms with his failed marriage and his family’s genocidal past while trying to persuade his father to start cancer treatments. A high school girl feels responsible for the death of her best friend, and the guilt continues to haunt her decades later. Evocative and lyrical, the tales in this collection uncover complex events and emotions, as well as the unpredictable ways in which people adapt to what happens in their lives, finding solace from the most surprising and unexpected sources.

Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry is a Russian-Armenian émigré, who moved to the U.S. in 1995, after witnessing perestroika and the collapse of the Soviet Empire. Writing in English, her second language, she has published over 50 stories and received eight Pushcart nominations. Her work has appeared in Electric Literature, Indiana Review, the Southern Review, Gulf Coast, TriQuarterly, Prairie Schooner, Nimrod, and elsewhere. Gorcheva-Newberry won the Raz/Shumaker Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Fiction for her debut story collection, What Isn't Remembered. Other honors include the 2013 Katherine Anne Porter Prize for Fiction and 2015 Tennessee Williams scholarship from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Her first novel, The Orchard, is forthcoming from Ballantine Books in March 2022. She lives with her family, splitting her time between New York, Virginia, and Russia.

Megan Cummins is a writer and editor living in Brooklyn. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan (BA), UC Davis (MA), and Rutgers-Newark (MFA); and her work has appeared in A Public Space, Guernica, One Teen Story, Ninth Letter, Okey-Panky, and elsewhere. Her debut story collection If the Body Allows It was awarded the 2019 Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Fiction and longlisted for the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Short Story Collection. She is the managing editor of A Public Space and serves on the governing board of the Bare Life Review.