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Lit on H St Book Club: Heads of the Colored People

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Join Lit on H St Book Club leaders Spines & Vines and Lupita Reads for a discussion of their latest book pick, Heads of the Colored People, which is also this year’s DC Reads selection.


Ahead of DC Public Library's May 31 Author Talk with author Nafissa Thompson-Spires, join Jamise and Lupita to read and discuss this short story collection.

*PEN Open Book Award Winner* 
*Longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award and Aspen Words Literary Prize* 
*Nominated for the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize*
*Kirkus Prize and Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist*

Included in Best Books of 2018 Lists from Refinery29, NPR, The RootHuffPostVanity FairBustleChicago TribunePopSugar, and The Undefeated.

In one of the season’s most acclaimed works of fiction—a National Book Award longlist and winner of the PEN Open Book Award winner—Nafissa Thompson-Spires offers “a firecracker of a book...a triumph of storytelling: intelligent, acerbic, and ingenious” (Financial Times).

Nafissa Thompson-Spires grapples with race, identity politics, and the contemporary middle class in this “vivid, fast, funny, way-smart, and verbally inventive” (George Saunders, author of Lincoln in the Bardo) collection.

Each captivating story plunges headfirst into the lives of utterly original characters. Some are darkly humorous—two mothers exchanging snide remarks through notes in their kids’ backpacks—while others are devastatingly poignant. In the title story, when a cosplayer, dressed as his favorite anime character, is mistaken for a violent threat the consequences are dire; in another story, a teen struggles between her upper middle class upbringing and her desire to fully connect with so-called black culture.

Thompson-Spires fearlessly shines a light on the simmering tensions and precariousness of black citizenship. Boldly resisting categorization and easy answers, Nafissa Thompson-Spires “has taken the best of what Toni Cade Bambara, Morgan Parker, and Junot Díaz do plus a whole lot of something we’ve never seen in American literature, blended it all us one of the finest short-story collections” (Kiese Laymon, author of Long Division).

Nafissa Thompson-Spires earned a doctorate in English from Vanderbilt University and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Illinois. Her work has appeared in Story Quarterly, Lunch Ticket, and The Feminist Wire, among other publications. She was a 2016 fellow of the Callaloo Writer’s Workshop.

600 H Street NE, Washington, DC 20002

This event is FREE and open to all. Let us know you’re coming on Facebook.