Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Melinda Moustakis named a National Book Foundation "5 Under 35" Young Fiction Author

Congratulations to Melinda Moustakis, named one of the National Book Foundation's "5 under 35" authors for this year! Her debut collection of stories set in Alaska, BEAR DOWN, BEAR NORTH, won the Flannery O'Connor Short Fiction Award and was released in September.

Now in its sixth year, the "5 Under 35" celebration of young fiction writers is the kickoff event for National Book Awards week. On Monday, November 14, at powerHouse Arena in Brooklyn, Moustakis will join fellow authors Shani Boianjiu, Danielle Evans, Mary Beth Keane, and John Corey Whaley for an event hosted by filmmaker, actor, writer and visual artist John Waters and DJed by poet and National Book Award finalist Patricia Smith. Finalists for the National Book Award will read November 15 and the awards will be presented November 16.

BEAR DOWN, BEAR NORTH has received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly ("In this sharply-crafted debut collection, Moustakis invites readers into a world filled with gruff characters, breathtaking wilderness, and a fierceness of spirit as crisp as the Alaskan winter") and Booklist ("The Kenai is the lifeblood that flows through Moustakis’ arrestingly concise, subtly poetic, and piercing short stories about several generations of an extended family.")

Moustakis is currently a visiting assistant professor at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington. She will be featured in two Alaska Book Week events in Anchorage next week: a discussion with former Flannery O'Connor Short Fiction Award winner Frank Soos and a workshop at 49 Alaska Writing Center.