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‘Idaho’ Author Emily Ruskovich Reading is Oct. 18

By: Sherry Squires   Published 9:49 am / September 26, 2017

Emily Ruskovich portraitThe MFA Program in Creative Writing at Boise State University will present author and fiction professor Emily Ruskovich at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 18, in the Skyline Room of the Stueckle Sky Center.

The newest addition to the MFA program’s faculty, Ruskovich will read from her acclaimed debut novel, “Idaho.” The reading is free and open to the public. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. No tickets are required. Parking is available in the West Stadium lot.

Ruskovich grew up in the Idaho Panhandle on Hoodoo Mountain. “Idaho” is set in this landscape, and tells a profound story of coping with unthinkable loss and tragedy. The book begins with a shocking act of family violence: a mother kills her beloved younger daughter, and her older daughter immediately flees to the woods, never to be found. The mystery of the murder hangs over all the characters, particularly Ann Mitchell, the second wife to Wade, who is the father of the murdered daughter. Wade suffers from early onset dementia, and without his memory to guide her, Ann urgently tries to understand what happened to his family.

“The scene appears set for a murder mystery, with the usual twists and thrills, guaranteeing ultimate gratification of the reader’s thirst for solutions. Emily Ruskovich’s moving and profound debut novel denies such generic satisfaction,” said reviewer Stevie Davis in The Guardian. Ultimately, despite its violent core, “Idaho” is a story of love and sacrifice.

A winner of a 2015 O. Henry Award and a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, Ruskovich joined the fiction faculty of the MFA program this fall. Her fiction has appeared in a number of distinguished literary journals, including Zoetrope, One Story, and The Virginia Quarterly Review. “Idaho” has received widespread acclaim, and was noted by The New York Times as one of the most anticipated books of 2017.

The MFA Program in Creative Writing at Boise State offers degree tracks in fiction and poetry, emphasizing the art and craft of literary writing and concentrating on the student’s written work. Two of the MFA’s publishing entities — The Idaho Review and Ahsahta Press — are widely regarded as leading national publications that consistently feature the top writers in the country. It is one of the top five research strengths at Boise State. The program runs out of the Department of Theatre Arts, and each year brings distinguished writers to campus through its reading series and its Visiting Distinguished Writer professorship. Past Visiting Distinguished Writers include Joy Williams, Denis Johnson and Pierre Joris.

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