Author Dariel Suarez talks with Jennifer de Leon about his new book, The Playwright's House. This is a virtual event co-sponsored by the National Hispanic Cultural Center. Dr. Patricia Perea at NHCC will moderate
About The Playwright's House:
Happily married, backed by a powerful mentor, and with career prospects that would take him abroad, Serguey has more than any young Cuban lawyer could ask for. But when his estranged brother Victor appears with news that their father--famed theater director Felipe Blanco--has been detained for what he suspects are political reasons, Serguey's privileged life is suddenly shaken.
A return to his childhood home in Havana's decaying suburbs--a place filled with art, politics, and the remnants of a dissolving family--reconnects Serguey with his troubled past. He learns of an elusive dramaturge's link to Felipe, a man who could be key to his father's release. With the help of a social media activist and his wife's ties with the Catholic Church, Serguey sets out to unlock the mystery of Felipe's arrest and, in the process, is forced to confront the reasons for the hostility between him and Victor: two violent childhood episodes that scarred them in unforgettable ways. On the verge of imprisonment, Serguey realizes he must make a decision regarding not just his father, but his family and his own future, a decision which, under the harsh shadow of a communist state, he cannot afford to regret.
Dariel Suarez was born and raised in Havana, Cuba, and immigrated to the U.S. in 1997 at age fourteen. He is the author of the novel The Playwright’s House (Red Hen Press) and the story collection A Kind of Solitude (Willow Springs Books), winner of the 2017 Spokane Prize for Short Fiction and the 2019 International Latino Book Award for Best Collection of Short Stories. Dariel is an inaugural City of Boston Artist Fellow and the Education Director at GrubStreet. His prose has appeared or is forthcoming in numerous publications, including The Threepenny Review, The Kenyon Review, Prairie Schooner, Michigan Quarterly Review, and The Caribbean Writer, where his work was awarded the First Lady Cecile de Jongh Literary Prize. Dariel earned his MFA in Fiction at Boston University and currently resides in the Boston area with his wife and daughter. More about him can be found at www.darielsuarez.com.
Jennifer De Leon is author of the YA novel Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From (Simon & Schuster) and the essay collection White Space: Essays on Culture, Race, & Writing (UMass Press), which is the recipient of the Juniper Prize. She is also the editor of the anthology Wise Latinas: Writers on Higher Education (University of Nebraska Press). An Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Framingham State University and faculty member in the MFA in Creative Nonfiction program at Bay Path University, she has published prose in over a dozen literary journals including Ploughshares, Iowa Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, and more. Connect with her @jdeleonwriter on Instagram and Twitter or at her website: www.jenniferdeleonauthor.com.