Monday, March 13 the Key West Friends of the Library will welcome well-known author, Diana Abu-Jaber to the podium for its ongoing lecture series. The talks are at the Key West Theater, 512 Eaton St. and begin promptly at 6:00 p.m. Seating begins at 5:30 on a first come first served basis. Admission is free.
Diana Abu-Jaber was born in Syracuse, New York to an American mother and a Jordanian father. Her family moved to Jordan a few times throughout her childhood, and elements of both her American and Jordanian experiences, as well as cross-cultural issues, especially culinary reflections, appear in her work.
Her most recent novel, Birds Of Paradise, won the 2012 Arab-American National Book Award and named one of the top books of the year by National Public Radio, the Washington Post, and the Oregonian.
“The stories she tells about herself are merciless, like a no-holds-barred conversation with an articulate and occasionally impulsive friend who confesses her own shortcomings but stands ready to enfold you in a hug at the slightest hint of need,” wrote Amy Driscoll in the Miami Herald.
The Language of Baklava, her first memoir, won the Northwest Booksellers’ Award, and has been translated into many languages.
Hilarious, gorgeously written, poignant, and wise, Life Without a Recipe is Diana’s celebration of journeying without a map, of learning to ignore the script and improvise, of escaping family and making family on one’s own terms. As Diana discovers, however, building confidence in one’s own path sometimes takes a mistaken marriage or two—or in her case, three: to a longhaired boy-poet, to a dashing deconstructionist literary scholar, and finally to her steadfast, outdoors-loving Scott. It also takes a good deal of angst (was it possible to have a serious writing career and be a mother?) and, even when she knew what she wanted (the craziest thing, in one’s late forties: a baby!), the nerve to pursue it.
Life Without A Recipe has been described as “a book of love, death, and cake.” Ruth Reichl calls it “bold and luscious” and “indispensable to anyone trying to forge their own truer path.”
Ms. Abu-Jaber’s appearance is made possible through the generous support of the Key West Literary Seminar. http://friendsofthekeywestlibrary.org and click on lecture series.