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Literary enthusiasts have plenty to look forward to this fall at VCU, where the events calendar includes visits from several prominent authors. All events are free and open to the public.

Cover image for Eye Level by Jenny Xie

Celebrate the Levis Reading Prize
7 p.m. Oct. 15, James Branch Cabell Library
Jenny Xie reads from her award-winning poetry collection, “Eye Level,” which received the 2019 Levis Reading Prize. Her first collection, it includes poems that travel — to Phnom Penh, Corfu, Hanoi, New York and beyond — and frequently explore themes of solitude and departure. It won the Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets and was a finalist for the National Book Award for poetry. The Levis Reading Prize is sponsored by VCU Libraries, the Department of English, Barnes & Noble @ VCU, the College of Humanities and Sciences and the family of the late poet and VCU professor Larry Levis.

Cover image for Evicted, by Matthew Desmond

Explore the VCU Common Book
6 p.m. Oct. 16, Stuart C. Siegel Center
Matthew Desmond, author of 2014’s “Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City” visits VCU to speak about the complex social issues he raises in his influential book. “Evicted” is the 2019 selection for VCU’s Common Book Program, a universitywide initiative focused on welcoming students to the vibrant intellectual culture of VCU through shared reading. “Evicted” deals with a topic that is particularly relevant in Richmond, which has one of the highest eviction rates in the country.

Cover image of "Severance," by Ling Ma

Hear from a first-time novelist
7 p.m. Nov. 12, James Branch Cabell Library
Ling Ma’s “Severance” takes on the immigrant experience, the end of the world, zombies and late-stage capitalism. The author reads from her debut novel, winner of the 2019 VCU Cabell First Novelist Award. Sponsors for the award include the James Branch Cabell Library Associates, VCU Libraries, the Department of English, Barnes & Noble @ VCU and the College of Humanities and Sciences.

Can’t come to campus for these events? VCU Alumni’s Lifelong Learning Virtual Book Club is designed so you can participate in literary life with fellow alumni anytime and from any location. Join now and jump into our discussion of Tara Westover’s Educated.

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I was moved to tears by Educated. The connection I felt with Tara’s experience overwhelmed me as I read. The desire to make your life different/better through acquiring an education was never better demonstrated. The human spirit can truly be remakable. Congratulations and thank you for telling your story.

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