Roger Wall of Pine Hill comes to the Skene Memorial Library in Fleischmanns on Saturday, July 13, at 1:00 PM to read from and talk about his award-winning debut novel, During-The-Event. The event is free and all are welcome.
Already being compared to such works as Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, Wall’s book sets a classic coming-of-age story in a dystopian but all too credible future.
For any writer who makes a living as an editor and journalist, publishing your first novel is a momentous occasion. But for local writer Roger Wall, who saw his first novel published this past year, the momentous occasion hit the absolute jackpot, as his book entitled During-the-Event, was awarded the annual Fiction Prize by Permafrost magazine. The publication, based out of the University of Alaska at Fairbanks, is proud to be known as “the farthest north literary journal in the United States.”
The book places a classic coming-of-age story in a dystopian but all too credible future. What Publisher’s Weekly describes as “Wall’s vivid, powerful vision of the future” is a climate-ravaged United States in which automaton-like citizens are herded into “habitable production zones,” while a few lone escapees must eke out an invisible survivalist’s existence in the wilderness that is left.
The book’s protagonist, the young D.E., “raised” by his grandfather to roam the wilderness and remain free, has only known that survivalist existence—till his grandfather’s death forces him to plot a new and often bewildering path, to look within himself, to search the past, and to make connections for a future in what is suddenly a strange new world. A journey through a nightmare of loneliness to self-discovery, it is little wonder that During-the-Event has been compared to such works as Cormac McCarthy’s The Road.
For a first novel, that’s heady stuff.
Editor/journalist and now novelist Wall and his wife, Jan Jaffe, are longtime residents of Pine Hill. Wall is an accomplished hiker and climber, a member of the Catskill 3500 Club, a passionate skier and cyclist, and a gardening volunteer at Mohonk Preserve. He is an active participant in the life of the Pine Hill community.