David Meischen in conversation with Cynthia Sylvester, Nopalito, Texas: Stories

Sunday, June 30, 2024 - 6:00pm

We are excited to welcome David Meischen for a reading and signing of his latest book, Nopalito, Texas: Stories. David will be in conversation with Cynthia Sylvester, author of The Half-White Album.

"In this tremendous collection, David Meischen renders entire lives with extraordinary depth, breadth, and care. Like Alice Munro and Andrea Barrett, Meischen conveys the significance of the present moment by laying bare what has come before. Nopalito, Texas: Stories is a book to savor, and this is a writer to cherish."--Bret Anthony Johnston, author of Remember Me Like This: A Novel

"The linked stories of Nopalito, Texas feel artfully distilled yet also boundless. As the characters grow older, they intersect in ways both surprising and deeply satisfying. This stunning collection, full of lyrical prose and deep compassion, belongs in the Texan canon."--Stacey Swann, author of Olympus, Texas: A Novel

"In Nopalito, Texas: Stories, David Meischen is attuned to the quiet crises upon which a person's life turns. In clear, poignant, and often poetic language, we see the residents of a small South Texas town--daughters, sons, mothers, fathers, neighbors, friends, outsiders--pushing against the limits of their lives. Stubbornness, devotion, confusion, pride, and anger see them through the internal upheavals and seismic shifts of loss and grief. And at the end, you'll sigh deep and long and wonder at having held so much life, so much humanity, in such a slender volume."--Ire'ne Lara Silva, author of Flesh to Bone

In this stunning debut story collection, everyone's got the blues but nobody is willing to sing it. Evelyn Smith, Candace Lambert, and Dorene Wahrmund chafe against rigid small-town expectations. Others in hardscrabble Nopalito find themselves fenced in--an aging gay liquor store owner estranged among his neighbors, a mother and son bound by mutual resentment, two neighboring farm boys attracted to each other. Their stories are driven by desperation, rarely spoken, that troubles the community's inhabitants as it nudges them toward connection, toward moments of hope. Meischen draws these characters with a tenderness that belies the hardness of their lives.

David Meischen is the author of Nopalito, Texas: Stories (University of New Mexico Press, 2024) and Caliche Road Poems (Lamar University Press, 2024). Anyone’s Son, from 3: A Taos Press, won Best First Book of Poetry from the Texas Institute of Letters in 2020. A Pushcart honoree, with a personal essay in Pushcart Prize XLII, David is cofounder and Managing Editor of Dos Gatos Press. He lives in Albuquerque, NM with his husband—also his co-publisher and co-editor—Scott Wiggerman.

Cynthia J. Sylvester is born into the Kiyaa’áanii Clan for the Bilagáana Clan and is an enrolled member of the Diné. She is a native of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Her work has appeared in ABQ in PrintLeon Literary ReviewLunch TicketAs Us Journal, and Bosque—The Magazine, among others. She was the recipient of the Native Writer Award at the Taos Writer’s Conference. Cynthia received her MFA in fiction from the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. Sylvester’s debut book The Half-White Album, published with the University of New Mexico Press, is the 2023 New Mexico-Arizona Book Award Best LGBTQ+ book.

Event address: 
4022 Rio Grande Blvd NW
Albuquerque, NM 87107
Nopalito, Texas: Stories By David Meischen Cover Image
ISBN: 9780826366009
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: University of New Mexico Press - April 15th, 2024

The Half-White Album By Cynthia J. Sylvester Cover Image
ISBN: 9780826364715
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: University of New Mexico Press - April 1st, 2023