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Sixth & I

Hanya Yanagihara

In Conversation with Barrie Hardymon

Jan 10, 2022 • 7:00 pm ET
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From the author of A Little Life comes To Paradise, a bold, brilliant novel spanning three centuries and three different versions of the American experiment, about lovers, family, loss and the elusive promise of utopia.

In an alternate version of 1893 America, New York is part of the Free States, where people may seemingly live and love whomever they please. The young scion of a distinguished family resists betrothal to a worthy suitor, drawn to a charming music teacher of no means. In a 1993 Manhattan besieged by the AIDS epidemic, a young Hawaiian man lives with his much older, wealthier partner, hiding his troubled childhood and the fate of his father. And in 2093, in a world riven by plagues and governed by totalitarian rule, a powerful scientist’s damaged granddaughter tries to navigate life without him—and solve the mystery of her husband’s disappearances.

These three sections are joined as recurring notes and themes deepen and enrich one another. What unites not only the characters, but the Americas, are their reckonings with the qualities that make us human: fear, love, shame, need, and loneliness.

Hanya Yanagihara is the editor-in-chief of T magazine and the author of The People in the Trees and A Little Life, which won the 2015 Kirkus Prize, was a National Book Award finalist, and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. In conversation with Barrie Hardymon, the Senior Editor at NPR’s Weekend Edition and the lead editor for books.

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