Excerpt from Day After Nightdownload
Anita Diamant's novel Day After Night tells the story of four women among the two hundred prisoners of the Atlit internment camp, a prison for “illegal” immigrants run by the British military near the Mediterranean coast south of Haifa. Diamant reads the Prologue and "Waiting" from Part One, focusing in on Tedi, a young Dutch woman prisoner trying to make sense of life in Barracks C. When a train brings new arrivals to the camp, Tedi must resist the urge to remember her home and her lost life, lest the memories overwhelm her.
James O'Brien's "Penned Up" tells a soldier's story. In a laconic tone that still hints at the pain of his experience, the narrator describes the heat, the smells, and the tragedy of his tour in Iraq. "Penned Up" is about detachment and loyalty, isolation and belonging, and expectations met and withheld.
excerpts from Hiroshima in the Morningdownload
Rahna Reiko Rizzuto's memoir Hiroshima in the Morning weaves together her personal experience during a research sojourn in that city with her growing understanding of the complex political, social, and cultural issues that surround the nuclear bombing and its aftermath. She reads here from three sections of the book, examining the stresses on her marriage as she undergoes this months-long separation from her family, her relationship with her aging mother, and her own changing sense of self. Her writing examines the challenge of memory--what happens when it fails us, and when we fail it by choosing to forget.
Death of a Nationalistdownload
Rebecca Pawel's Death of a Nationalist follows Carlos Tejada Alonso y Lean, a Sergeant in the Guardia Civil in Spain in 1939. The bitter civil war between the Nationalists and the Republicans has interrupted Tejada's legal studies in Salamanca. Second son of a conservative Southern family of landowners, he is an enthusiast for the Catholic Franquista cause, a dedicated, and now triumphant, Nationalist. Just as the Republicans have surrendered, and the Guardia Civil has begun to impose order in the ruins of Madrid, Tejada finds the body of his best friend, a hero of the siege of Toledo, shot to death on a street named Amor de Dios. Naturally, a Red is suspected. And it is easy for Tejada to assume that the woman caught kneeling over the body is the killer. But when his doubts are aroused, he cannot help seeking justice.
"What is it like to be the daughter of a Nazi?" That is the question Christiane Alsop sets out to answer in her essay "Presumed Guilty". Reflecting on her father's tales of his accounts during wartime Germany, contemplating her at-times strained relationship with her father over the years, and her own reactions to the ebb and flow of power, Christiane is torn by the equal tugs of resignation and revelation. Revelation wins out, as she conveys the moral, ethical, and personal challenges of living with that difficult question.
Sea Escape (a central chapter)download
At the November 15 Four Stories event, Lynne Griffin reads a central chapter from Sea Escape, her novel about the ties between a mother and her daughter, inspired by a collection of family letters. To hear Lynne read the first two chapters of the novel for The Drum, click here and here.