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Award-Winning Debut Novelist Amanda Kabak Brings Her Innovative LGBTQIA+ Fiction to Asheville

Amanda Kabak, winner of the Arcturus & Chicago Review of Books Al-Simak Award for fiction, will visit Asheville on February 17 to read from her innovative LGBTQIA+ debut novel, The Mathematics of Change.

The Mathematics of Change is an emotional page-turner featuring three women-identified characters at midlife whose lives are at critical crossroads—their pasts and their futures intersecting in ways that create both drama and opportunity. Kabak’s characters hold deep-seated ideas of who they are, but they are forced to question these ideas in different and very difficult ways. “Change is inevitable,” says Kabak, “but that doesn’t make it easy, especially on an emotional level. When that change sparks self-reflection and doubt, it is even worse.”

As an own-voices novel, Mathematics has strong appeals to feminist and LGBTQIA+ readers. It offers important reflections on female friendship, looking at the intimate connections women make with each other in order to survive and learn about themselves and what they want. It investigates the fluidity of sexuality for women-identified people, as well as the intersections of gender identity, emotional intimacy, and sexuality. Central protagonist Mitch is a woman not often represented in fiction—woman-identifying, masculine-presenting, with an unexpectedly fluid sexuality, whose intellect is continuously confronted by deeply emotional connection. This is a book that shows women as they are: human, flawed, fierce, and the genuine movers in their own lives and their communities.

Chicago native Amanda Kabak is a Pushcart Prize nominee and the 2017 winner of the Chicago Review of Books Al-Simak Award for Fiction. She has had stories published in Midwestern Gothic, The Quotable, Perceptions Magazine, and other print and online periodicals.

Firestorm Books and Coffee (610 Hayward Road) will host Kabak’s reading on February 17 at 3:00 p.m. The author will answer questions from the audience and sign copies of her novel following the reading. Local novelist Sarah Blackman (Hex; Mother Box and Other Tales) will introduce Kabak and moderate the question-and-answer period.


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