CoffeeTree Books is pleased to welcome authors Michael Croley and Silas House on Thursday, June 13, from 6:00pm to 7:00pm, as Silas interviews Michael about his book, Any Other Place.
According to an April 28, 2019 NPR book review, the title of Michael Croley's debut short story collection, “Any Other Place, evokes a kind of desperation that's familiar to anyone who's longed to escape their hometown. It's not a universal sentiment, but it's undoubtedly a common one: For some people, whether they grew up in a sprawling metropolis or a claustrophobic small town, the idea of pulling up stakes and moving somewhere — not even one place in particular, just something that's not here — is a seductive one.”
In "Smolders," a teenage boy named Wren Asher reluctantly attends a party thrown by his fellow graduating high school seniors in the fictional town of Fordyce, Ky. (where many of the stories in the collection are set). He makes a last-ditch attempt to convince the girl he has a crush on to move with him to Boston, where he's planning to attend Harvard later that year. Croley does a wonderful job examining Wren's ambivalence about leaving his hometown, where he's never really fit in: "He wanted to be here because he had known these people all his life but he had never truly felt part of them because he was half-Korean, different from everyone else, the lone minority."
Silas House, author of Southernmost says: "Like the best writers, Michael Croley takes us into the lives of ordinary people who have been thrust into the extraordinary circumstances of everyday life. There is not a wasted word in these thirteen taut and thrilling stories of grief, exile, and devotion. We leave Any Other Place feeling as if we know each of these sharply drawn characters and traveled to their places in the world, all of which Croley presents with startling clarity and complexity. This is one of the most exciting and beautiful story collections to come down the literary pike in a long time and announces a major new talent who infuses every story with emotion that leaves us feeling gut-punched in the best of ways. Any Other Place is a stunner."
Michael Croley was born in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. The recipient of an NEA Fellowship in Literature in 2016, his work has appeared in a number of publications. Any Other Place is his debut collection of stories. He teaches creative writing at Denison University.
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CoffeeTree Books is located at 159 East Main Street in a former movie theater, and also houses The Fuzzy Duck Coffeeshop and A Good Yarn, a complete yarn shop.
(provided by CoffeeTree Books)