Robert Hill, a West Coast author with local ties, visits Oblong on March 29

 

Robert Hill, a West Coast author with local ties, visits Oblong on March 29

Author Robert Hill’s March 29 appearance at Oblong Books is all about family: his own, and the families invented for his new novel, The Remnants.

The Remnants details the lives, hopes, and losses of the residents of New Eden, a fictionalized small town in its twilight years. And Hill’s niece, Melia Hill, is a bookseller at Oblong.

“I’m immensely proud of his accomplishments and the connection we can share being on opposite sides of the literary world,” said Melia Hill. “It seems fitting as the weather scurries into spring at an alarming speed that a book about beginnings and ends and every day in between should be released.”

Robert Hill’s event begins at 6 p.m. at Oblong Books, 26 Main Street, Millerton, and will include a short reading as well as a Q and A.

The Remnants, out March 15 from independent publisher Forest Avenue Press, is about the town of New Eden arriving at its last days. As two near-centenarian citizens prepare for their annual birthday tea, a third vows to interrupt the proceedings with a bold declaration. The Remnants cartwheels through the lives of wood-splitters, garment-menders, and chervil farmers, while exposing an electrical undercurrent of secrets, taboos, and unfulfilled longings. Rene Denfeld, award-winning author of The Enchanted, said “Bold, brilliant, and touching, The Remnants is a eulogy for a world in which humanity is treasured—a celebration of life in all its imperfect glory.”

Legendary bookstore Book People in Austin, Texas, recommended The Remnants as a strong book club choice in its March Book Club Corner, explaining that “Fans of Margaret Atwood will love the dystopian end-of-the-world themes, older readers will appreciate the elderly protagonists, literary fiction lovers will connect to the clever word play, and others will love the juxtaposition of humor with dark themes. A most original novel!”

Hill is touring nationally to support The Remnants, including a launch at Powell’s City of Books in Portland, Ore., and appearances in Westport, Conn., and Berkeley, Calif. His debut novel,When All Is Said and Done, was published by Graywolf Press in 2006 and was shortlisted for the Ken Kesey Award for Fiction.

“It’s a double privilege for me to read at Oblong,” Hill said, “both because of the store’s high esteem in the marketplace, and because I get to spend time rare, precious time with family.”

Forest Avenue Press, an independent publisher of literary fiction, was founded by Laura Stanfill in 2012 and its titles are distributed by Legato Publishers Group, a division of The Perseus Books Group.

For more information about the event, contact Oblong Books at 518-789-3797.