River Mumma: An Evening with Zalika Reid-Benta and Victor LaValle

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River Mumma: An Evening with Zalika Reid-Benta and Victor LaValle

By A Room of One's Own

A Room of One's Own is thrilled to welcome Zalika Reid-Benta and Victor LaValle for a virtual book launch party, reading, and conversation for Zalika's newest book River Mumma. Join us to celebrate this incredible book!

This is a virtual event on Crowdcast.

About the Book
Issa Rae’s Insecure with a magical realist spin: River Mumma is an exhilarating contemporary fantasy novel about a young Black woman who navigates her quarter-life-crisis while embarking on a mythical quest through the streets of Toronto. Alicia has been out of grad school for months. She has no career prospects and lives with her mom, who won’t stop texting her macabre news stories and reminders to pick up items from the grocery store. Then, one evening, the Jamaican water deity, River Mumma, appears to Alicia, telling her that she has twenty-four hours to scour the city for her missing comb. Alicia doesn’t understand why River Mumma would choose her. She can’t remember all the legends her relatives told her, unlike her retail co-worker Heaven, who can reel off Jamaican folklore by heart. She doesn’t know if her childhood visions have returned, or why she feels a strange connection to her other co-worker Mars. But when the trio are chased down by malevolent spirits called duppies, they realize their tenuous bonds to each other may be their only lifelines. With the clock ticking, Alicia’s quest through the city broadens into a journey through time—to find herself and what the river carries.

Zalika Reid-Benta is a Toronto-based writer. Her debut short story collection Frying Plantain won the 23rd annual Danuta Gleed Literary Award, recognizing the best first collection of short fiction by a Canadian author published in 2019 in the English language. Frying Plantain also won the 2020 Kobo Emerging Writer Prize in literary fiction, was shortlisted for the 2020 Trillium Book Award and was longlisted for the 2019 Scotiabank Giller Prize. Zalika is also the winner of the 2019 Byblacks People’s Choice Awards for Best Author.

Victor LaValle is the author of the short story collection Slapboxing with Jesus, five novels, The Ecstatic, Big Machine, The Devil in Silver, The Changeling, and Lone Women, and two novellas, Lucretia and the Kroons and The Ballad of Black Tom. He is also the creator and writer of two comic books Victor LaValle's DESTROYER and EVE. He was raised in Queens, New York. He now lives in the Bronx with his wife, the writer Emily Raboteau, and their kids. He teaches at Columbia University.

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