Penn Calendar Penn A-Z School of Arts and Sciences University of Pennsylvania

Mira Jacob: Reading and Conversation

Hosted by Piyali Bhattacharya

Mira Jacob
Novelist, Memoirist, Illustrator, and Cultural Critic
Monday, April 8, 2024 - 06:00
Kelly Writers House: 3805 Locust Walk, Philadelphia, PA 19104

We eagerly invite you to join us for a reading and conversation with highly acclaimed award-winning novelist and illustrator Mira Jacob, hosted by Creative Writing Faculty member Piyali Bhattacharya. Jacob's debut novel The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing is a nationally bestselling epic, irreverent testimony to the bonds of love, the pull of hope, and the power of making peace with life’s uncertainties. Her second publication, and TV show in development, is Good Talk: A Memoir in Conversations, a bold, wry, and intimate graphic memoir about American identity, interracial families, and the realities that divide us.

This event is co-sponsored by the Asian American Studies Program, the Center for the Advanced Study of India, the Center for Experimental Ethnography, the Creative Writing Program, Fine Arts and Design, and the Creative Ventures Program at the Kelly Writers House.

Mira Jacob is a novelist, memoirist, illustrator, and cultural critic. Her graphic memoir Good Talk: A Memoir in Conversations was shortlisted for the National Book Critics Circle Award, longlisted for the PEN Open Book Award, nominated for three Eisner Awards, and named a New York Times Notable Book, as well as a best book of the year by TimeEsquire, Publisher’s Weekly, and Library Journal. It is currently in development as a television series. Her novel The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing was a Barnes & Noble Discover New Writers pick, shortlisted for India’s Tata First Literature Award, longlisted for the Brooklyn Literary Eagles Prize and named one of the best books of 2014 by Kirkus Reviews, The Boston Globe, Goodreads, Bustle, and The Millions. Her writing and drawings have appeared in The New York Times Book ReviewElectric LiteratureTin HouseLiterary HubGuernicaVogue, and The Telegraph. She is currently an Assistant Professor at the MFA Creative Writing Program at The New School and a founding faculty member of the MFA Writing Program at Randolph College. She is the co-founder of Pete’s Reading Series in Brooklyn, where she spent 13 years bringing literary fiction, non-fiction, and poetry to Williamsburg. She is currently working on We Killed Anji Alexander (Ecco, 2026), a kaleidoscopic novel about the murder of a white-passing Indian actress. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, documentary filmmaker Jed Rothstein, and their son.

Piyali Bhattacharya is a fiction and nonfiction writer whose short stories and essays have appeared in Ploughshares, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and National Geographic, among other publications. She is the editor of the anthology Good Girls Marry Doctors: South Asian American Daughters on Obedience and Rebellion, which received an Independent Publisher Book Award, and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. She holds a B.A. from Bryn Mawr College, an M.A. from SOAS—University of London, and an M.F.A. from the University of Wisconsin—Madison, where she was winner of the Peter Straub Award for Fiction. She is currently at work on her first novel, which has been supported by fellowships from Hedgebrook, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and ARGS.