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Monday, March 28

Just Announced! Writers in The Loft: Jennifer Egan

The Music Hall and RiverRun Bookstore announce the second author event in their new Writers in the Loft series. On Monday, May 16, at 7pm the award-winning writer Jennifer Egan will join the series with her acclaimed novel A VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD. Egan’s book, just out in paperback, recently won the 2011 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction and was also one of the New York Times “10 Best Books of 2010.”  Her appearance with Writers in the Loft will take place at the newly opened Music Hall Loft at 131 Congress Street in downtown Portsmouth.

Writers in the Loft is akin to The Music Hall’s anchor author series, Writers on a New England Stage, featuring well-known authors but in a smaller, more intimate space.  It is produced as a partnership between The Music Hall and RiverRun Bookstore with Series Sponsor Citizens Bank. The series will bring audiences today’s top authors, the best of fiction and nonfiction.

Tickets for Writers in the Loft: Jennifer Egan will go on sale to members Friday, April 1, and on sale to the general public Friday, April 15.  Tom Holbrook, owner of RiverRun Bookstore, said of Egan, “Jennifer Egan’s latest novel, A VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD, is a fascinating and thoughtful work of fiction. The book evolves with each chapter, with each new viewpoint, providing a textured critique of modern and post-modern life” We’re thrilled that one of the best contemporary novelists will be coming to Portsmouth.”


From the award-winning and nationally bestselling author Jennifer Egan, A VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD—one of the most acclaimed books of 2010—is a dazzling, shape-shifting work of fiction that spans fifty years and follows a mesmerizing cast of characters through the A sides and B sides of their lives. Brimming with music, Egan’s newest is her most accomplished work of fiction yet, a deft play on time—the “goon” of the narrative—and a shimmering, clever, masterful composition that lays bare the way we live now.

A VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD is a book about survival, about the stirrings and transformations set inexorably in motion by even the most passing conjunction of our fates. In a breathtaking array of styles and tones ranging from tragedy to satire to PowerPoint, Egan captures the undertow of self-destruction that we all must either master or succumb to; the basic human hunger for redemption; and the universal tendency to reach for both—and escape the merciless progress of time—in the transporting realms of art and music. This is sly, startling, exhilarating work from one of our boldest writers.

About the author, Jennifer Egan

Jennifer Egan is the author of The Keep, Look at Me, The Invisible Circus, and the story collection Emerald City. Her stories have been published in The New Yorker, Harper’s Magazine, GQ, Zoetrope, All-Story, and Ploughshares, and her nonfiction appears frequently in The New York Times Magazine. She lives with her husband and sons in Brooklyn.  Jennifer Egan’s official website is http://www.jenniferegan.com

About the Loft: The Center for Performing Arts, Literature and Education

The Music Hall’s new Loft space at 131 Congress Street is now under construction and will open in April 2011 as The Music Hall Loft: The Center for Performing Arts, Literature and Education. A critical extension of The Music Hall’s mission “to be an active and vital arts center for the enrichment of the Seacoast community,” the Loft significantly increases capacity for The Music Hall’s existing educational and community programs, and allows for creative new educational and programming initiatives. Whether in a classroom configuration, master class in a theater-style set up, small workshop in a conference room, or cabaret or theater arrangement, the Loft will engage children, teens, and adults.

Writers in the Loft - Package Purchase

Tickets to Writers in the Loft; Jennifer Egan are $26 for members of The Music Hall ($29 for general public).  Included in the package are a reserved seat, a copy of A VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD ($14.95, trade paperback), bar beverage; and author presentation, Q+A, and book signing meet-and-greet. Tickets are available through The Music Hall Box Office, located at 28 Chestnut Street, Portsmouth, over the phone at 603-436-2400 or online at http://www.themusichall.org.  Packages, if available, can also be purchased on the night of the event at The Music Hall Loft Box office at 131 Congress Street, beginning at 6:00pm for the 7pm event.  The author will autograph her book for package-purchasers on the night, following her reading and discussion. 


“If Egan is our reward for living through the self-conscious gimmicks and ironic claptrap of postmodernism, then it was all worthwhile. . . . [A] triumph of technical bravado and tender sympathy. . . . Turn up the music, skip the college reunion and curl up with THE GOON SQUAD instead.” —The Washington Post

“A spiky, shape-shifting new book. . . . A display of Egan’s extreme virtuosity.” —The New York Times

“Pitch perfect. . . . Is there anything Egan can’t do? . . . Egan possesses a satirist’s eye and a romance novelist’s heart.” —The New York Times Book Review

“At once intellectually stimulating and moving. . . . Like a masterful album, this one demands a replay.” —San Francisco Chronicle

“A new classic of American fiction.” —Time

Images of the author and book are downloadable from


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