Margot Singer- 2017 Edward Lewis Wallant Award Recipient
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Margot Singer

2017 Edward Lewis Wallant Award Recipient

Margot Singer

In addition to writing Underground Fugue, Margot is also the author of a collection of short stories, The Pale of Settlement (University of Georgia Press, 2007), winner of the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction; and co-editor, with Nicole Walker, of em>Bending Genre (Bloomsbury Academic, 2013), a collection of essays on creative nonfiction. Her short stories and essays have appeared in The Kenyon Review, The Gettysburg Review, Conjunctions, Shenandoah, Prairie Schooner, Agni, Ninth Letter, The Sun, and many others.

Winner of the 2013 James Jones First Novel Fellowship, Singer has also received a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, the Reform Judaism Prize for Jewish Fiction, the Glasgow Prize for Emerging Writers, the Carter Prize for the essay, and an honorable mention from the judges of the PEN/Hemingway Award. Her short story, Deir Yassin, also appears in the Wallant Award anthology, The New Diaspora: The Changing Landscape of American Jewish Fiction (Wayne State University Press, 2015).

Reviewers have unanimously praised Underground Fugue:

  • “Subtle, affecting…The novel shimmers between meanings, never settling on the single one. It…continues to reverberate in the mind after its final words.”—Columbus Dispatch

  • “An unusually layered debut. In short, taut chapters, [Underground Fugue] alternates between two families who have suddenly become neighbors…When terror strikes, the plot accelerates and the novel’s strands converge brilliantly.”—Publishers Weekly

  • “Singer gracefully weaves the fugue motif throughout her debut novel…The result is a nuanced, realistic exploration of themes of loss and identity, which seem particularly relevant in these uncertain times.”—Library Journal

  • “Singer’s introspective tale of displaced characters casts a subtle light on current events.” —Booklist/American Library Association

  • “The characters…are constructed with depth and richness…Singer’s London emerges as a place of missed connections, miscommunications and misinterpretations.” —New York Times Book Review

  • “In this extraordinarily accomplished debut novel, Margot Singer confronts life’s essential losses—aging, illness, accidental death—but also the scalding, self-inflicted wounds of alienation, estrangement and prejudice. The book’s tender, questing spirit imbues even these dark recesses with a kind of luminosity, making Underground Fugue a pleasure to read from beginning to end.” —Geraldine Brooks, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of March

  • “A beautiful novel about affinities, assumptions, and family mysteries.  We know less than we think we do, and we need each other more than we thought.” —Allegra Goodman, bestselling author of Intuition

  • “I haven’t been able to get Underground Fugue out of my mind. Haunting and breathtaking, this debut sticks, the way good literature always does, because it awakens us to the majesty—all the pain, all the joy—our lives contain.” —Lee Martin, author of The Bright Forever

  • Underground Fugue—an absorbing, deeply poignant intersection of lives and histories—establishes Margot Singer as a world-class writer. May the literary gods rejoice.” —Bob Shacochis, author of The Woman Who Lost Her Soul

  • Underground Fugue swept me away. I could not put it down. Here is a writer aptly named—Singer. Read and savor the music, even as your blood jumps.” —Richard Bausch, author of Peace

  • “A riveting, deeply affecting novel I will be thinking about for years.” —Eileen Pollack, author of A Perfect Life