San Francisco, CA 94105
Region: Union Square/ Financial District
The Museum of African Diaspora, in conjunction with Third Thursdays in Yerba Buena, presents debut novelist Keenan Norris and Crystal Sykes in what is sure to be a lively conversation about race, class, and California. Winner of the 2012 James D. Houston Award, Norris' novel Brother and the Dancer follows two young African Americans growing up in the San Bernardino Valley — despite living only a few miles apart, they are separated by class, violence, and history; told in alternating chapters that barely intersect, their stories paint two starkly different pictures of the same place. Called "simply one of the most talented young writers around" by author Victor LaValle, Norris recently completed a dissertation on the relationship between the American publishing industry and black American writers; he is editor of the forthcoming Street Lit: Representing the Urban Landscape, which includes essays and interviews that explore both the spirit and trajectory of urban fiction and nonfiction from 1950s to present day.