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LR's Asheville Center to present best-selling authors
LR's Asheville Center to present best-selling authors

Lenoir-Rhyne University's Asheville Center will host best-selling authors and sisters Elizabeth Kostova and Victoria Johnson for an event entitled "Sisters in Words: Fiction, Nonfiction, and the Creative Process," Thursday, Jan. 24, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. The event will be presented by the Asheville Center's Thomas Wolfe Center for Narrative and the Yale Association of Western North Carolina.

Kostova and Johnson will read from their latest works, Kostova's "The Shadow Land" and Johnson's "American Eden: David Hosack, Botany, and Medicine in the Garden of the Early Republic." A discussion on the creative process will follow, facilitated by Laura Hope-Gill, assistant professor of writing and coordinator of the Thomas Wolfe Center for Narrative. Attendees will also have an opportunity to engage in a question-and-answer session and a book signing and sale.

"The Shadow Land" chronicles the travels of a young American woman to Bulgaria. The narrative unravels into a sumptuous tale from an incident of an accidentally taken piece of luggage. Kostova's novel takes the reader through the terrains of grief and mystery while celebrating the power of story to awaken, fascinate, and heal. Her 2005 work, "The Historian," was the first debut novel to reach No. 1 on The New York Times best-seller list.

"American Eden: David Hosack, Botany, and Medicine in the Garden of the Early Republic," a finalist for the 2018 National Book Award, illustrates a noted 18th- and 19th-century physician's dream of creating the nation's first botanical garden. Hosack was physician to Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr, and was present at the fateful 1804 duel between the two.

He drew in his medical practice on his vast knowledge of medicinal plants and earned the admiration of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, among other luminaries. Johnson is associate professor of urban policy and planning at Hunter College in New York, New York.

"This event deeply reflects the passion of the Thomas Wolfe Center for Narrative which focuses on development and process in creative work," Hope-Gill said. "Kostova and Johnson meticulously merge inquiry, creativity, and intellectual curiosity. The results are two thrilling and very different works of history and literature, and this event promises to be deeply insightful and exciting for all who strive to follow creative impulses to their most excellent ends."

LR's Asheville Center is located at 36 Montford Ave., Asheville, N.C. 28801.

Visit lr.edu/publicevents to learn more.