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Pulitzer-winning novelist gets a rapturous reception

Posted by: Rohan Preston Updated: September 19, 2012 - 8:32 AM

 

Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Junot Diaz (right) posed with an admirer. Photo by Rohan Preston

Gracious and witty Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Junot Diaz signed books and posed for photographs for two hours Tuesday night as he launched the new Talking Volumes reading season.

Diaz, who won the 2008 Pulitzer for fiction for his novel “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao,” read excerpts from his latest story collection, “This Is How You Lose Her” and was interviewed by Minnesota Public Radio’s Kerri Miller. (Miller’s interview with Diaz will be broadcast on MPR in the near future.) A story about him in Star Tribune is here.

He was met by a rapturous, near-capacity crowd at the Fitzgerald Theater. Just as he was about to leave at the end of the evening, a couple of stagehands called Diaz to center stage. They had two things in mind. First, they wanted to initiate him into the local union of stagehands.

“After dropping so many f-bombs tonight, you’re now officially a member of IATSE ,” they laughed.

They also wanted him to sign the back wall of the Fitz, a tradition that Diaz happily joined.

Then he headed for his hotel, happy but exhausted and thinking of his early morning flight.

At the St Paul Hotel, a clutch of smiling women awaited him, all bearing copies of his books. Diaz happily obliged them with his John Hancock.

“I love it,” he said.
 
Television legal analyst and New Yorker correspondent Jeffrey Toobin is up next in Talking Volumes. He appears Sept. 26 at the Fitz.

 

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