Critics have called the characters in Nicole Krausss latest novel, Great House, fractured and broken, but Krauss disagrees. Were seeing these characters at a time when their lives appear to be broken, she tells us. But that doesnt mean that as characters they are at all. Great House chronicles the history of various people who come in contact with a large, overbearing writing desk. Theres a young woman, a novelist who agrees to hold the desk for a poet about to return to his homeland, Chile. Among the thousands that are disappeared under the Pinochet regime, he never returns. Years later, a young woman appears at the novelists door claiming to be the poets daughter, asking for the desk. By now, its become much more than a writing table to the novelist, and she doesnt want to part with it. But how can she deny the young woman who is looking for something, anything, that will help her hold on to her long-missing father?
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Krauss will be appearing at the Margarett Root Brown Reading Series, along with Francisco Goldman, who will be reading from his new book Say Her Name. 7:30 p.m. Wortham Theater Center, 501 Texas. For information, call 713-521-2026 or visit www.inprinthouston.org. Free to $5.
Mon., Sept. 19, 7:30 p.m., 2011