Inprint Margarett Root Brown Reading Series: Michael Cunningham

Novelists are often told, “Write what you know.” Michael Cunningham, the Pulitzer Prize-­winning author of The Hours and this month’s featured speaker for the Inprint Margarett Root Brown Reading Series, seems to have done just that with his newest novel, The Snow Queen. The story of Tyler, a drug­-addicted musician; Beth, his gravely ill wife; and Barrett, his underemployed brother, incorporates bits of Cunningham’s life. As with some of Cunningham’s friends, Tyler has an seemingly legitimate reason to use drugs. He’s not a junkie living on the streets; he’s a loving husband who desperately needs to escape his life. Tyler uses the drugs to cope with the fact that his wife has stage­-four cancer. Beth is dying, but less upset about her situation than her husband, again a situation Cunningham has seen in real life. And Barrett just got dumped by yet another boyfriend (this time the breakup was via text, which added insult to injury). Cunningham had recently ended a long-­term relationship with his partner when he was writing the novel. (We found no indication that texting played a role there.)

Cunningham ­discusses and signs at 7:30 p.m. Wortham Theater ­Center, 500 Texas. For information, call 713‐521‐2026 or visit ­inprinthouston.org. $5.
Mon., Nov. 10, 7:30 p.m., 2014

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