Laura Van Den Berg is The Ruby's August Writer in Residence, visiting us from Cambridge, MA. The Ruby's Writer in Residence program seeks to support the best writers writing, and to bring writers from outside the Bay Area to The Ruby to read. Join us for a conversation between Laura and her editor, Emily Bell, about her latest novel, The Third Hotel.
About The Third Hotel
In Havana, Cuba, a widow tries to come to terms with her husband’s death—and the truth about their marriage—in Laura van den Berg’s surreal, mystifying story of psychological reflection and metaphysical mystery.
Shortly after Clare arrives in Havana, Cuba, to attend the annual Festival of New Latin American Cinema, she finds her husband, Richard, standing outside a museum. He’s wearing a white linen suit she’s never seen before, and he’s supposed to be dead. Grief-stricken and baffled, Clare tails Richard, a horror film scholar, through the newly tourist-filled streets of Havana, clocking his every move. As the distinction between reality and fantasy blurs, Clare finds grounding in memories of her childhood in Florida and of her marriage to Richard, revealing her role in his death and reappearance along the way. The Third Hotel is a propulsive, brilliantly shape-shifting novel from an inventive author at the height of her narrative powers.
“I love Laura van den Berg for her eeriness and her elegance, the way the fabric of her stories is woven on a slightly warped loom so that you read her work always a bit perturbed. The Third Hotel is artfully fractured, slim and singular; it’s a book that sings, but always with a strange pressure more felt than heard beneath the song.”
―Lauren Groff, author of Fates and Furies
About Laura Van Den Berg
Laura van den Berg was born and raised in Florida. She is the author of two collections of stories, The Isle of Youth (FSG, 2013) and What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves Us (Dzanc Books, 2009), and the novel Find Me (FSG, 2015). Farrar, Straus and Giroux will publish her next novel, The Third Hotel, in August 2018.