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Patrick Nathan and Kaethe Schwehn

  • Black Dog Café 308 East Prince Street Saint Paul, MN, 55101 United States (map)

SubText Books is proud to present a reading with Patrick Nathan and Kaethe Schwehn on Tuesday, February 27th at Black Dog Café! Nathan will read from his new novel Some Hell (Graywolf Press, February 2018), and Schwehn will read from her new novel The Rending and the Nest (Bloomsbury). Conversation and book signing to follow!

6:00 PM — 7:00 PM: Social hour (grab a drink from Black Dog Café, purchase books, and mingle!)

7:00 PM — 8:00 PM: Reading and conversation with Patrick Nathan and Kaethe Schwehn

About Some Hell:
Colin’s family is dissolving in the aftermath of his father’s suicide. While his mother, Diane, retreats into therapy and cynicism, Colin clings to every shred of normal life. Awash with guilt, he casts about for someone to confide in: first his estranged grandfather, then a predatory science teacher. Shunned by his siblings and rejected by his homophobic best friend, Colin immerses himself in the notebooks his father left behind. Full of strange facts, lists, and historical anecdotes that neither Colin nor Diane can understand, the notebooks infect their worldview until they can no longer tell what’s real and what’s imagined. A novel of aching intensity, Some Hell shows how unspeakable tragedy shapes a life, and how imagination saves us from ourselves.

About The Rending and the Nest:
One moment Mira is shopping at the mall with her brother, and the next, she awakens alone on the floor of a clothing store to find that he’s vanished, along with most of the other shoppers. In fact, the Rending, as the event comes to be known, has inexplicably taken 95 percent of the Earth’s population. 

Three years after the Rending, Mira has cobbled together a home and a surrogate family in the ramshackle community of Zion, yet she’s careful not to get too attached to anyone or anything. When her best friend, Lana, announces her pregnancy, the first one since the Rending, it’s a new source of hope for the community. But when Lana gives birth to an inanimate object, and the other women follow suit, the appearance of normalcy the Zionites have constructed begins to crack. As they wrestle with the presence of these Babies, a confident outsider named Michael appears, proselytizing about the world beyond Zion and a sinister place called the Zoo. He lures Lana away and when she doesn’t return, Mira must decide how much she’s willing to surrender to save her friend, her home, and her own fraught pregnancy.

The Rending and the Nest is a chilling yet redemptive debut novel that examines motherhood, community, faith, and the importance of telling one’s own story.

About Patrick Nathan:
Patrick Nathan’s short fiction and essays have appeared in Gulf Coast, Boulevard, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and elsewhere. This is his first novel. He lives in Minneapolis.

About Kaethe Schwehn:
Kaethe Schwehn’s first book, Tailings: A Memoir, won the 2015 Minnesota Book Award for Creative Nonfiction, and her chapbook of poems, Tanka & Me, was selected for the Mineral Point Chapbook Series. In addition to holding M.F.A.s from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and the University of Montana, Schwehn has been the recipient of an Academy of American Poets prize, a Minnesota Arts Board grant, and a Loft Mentor Series award. She teaches at St. Olaf College and lives in Northfield, Minnesota.

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