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Lake Tahoe professor to read from war memoir Thursday

Staff report

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Brian Turner, celebrated author and director of Sierra Nevada College’s MFA program in Creative Writing, will read from his latest book, “My Life as a Foreign Country: A Memoir,” this Thursday, Jan. 8.

Turner has enjoyed tremendous national attention and accolades for his writing about his experiences of war.

Nick Flynn (“Being Flynn”) described the book as “achingly, disturbingly, shockingly beautiful,” while fellow war writer Tim O’Brien (“The Things We Carried”) commented that “It surely ranks with the best war memoirs I’ve ever encountered — a humane, heartbreaking, and expertly crafted work of literature,” according to an event promotion from SNC.

Turner, who enlisted in the U.S. Army after earning his MFA from the University of Oregon, served in Bosnia-Herzegovina with the 10th Mountain Division and as an infantry team leader in Iraq with the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team.

His book retraces his war experience — pre-deployment to combat zone, homecoming to aftermath — in an account which combines recollection with the imagination’s efforts to make reality comprehensible.

Turner’s 2010 book of poetry, “Phantom Noise,” was short listed for the T.S. Eliot Prize in England, according to SNC.

His first book of poetry — “Here, Bullet” (2005) — won the 2005 Beatrice Hawley Award. His poetry and essays have been published in The Georgia Review, Poetry Daily, the Virginia Quarterly Review, and National Geographic, and he was featured in the Academy Award nominated documentary “Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience.”

Thursday’s event begins with a reception at 6 p.m., followed by Turner’s reading at 7 p.m., taking place at Prim Library on the college’s campus.

Visit sierranevada.edu to learn more.


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