Tara Ison – “At the Hour Between Dog and Wolf”

March 22, 2023
Assembly Hall

Join International House as we partner with Seminary Co-op Bookstores and the KAM Isaiah Israel Congregation for an Author Night with Tara Ison on her book At the Hour Between Dog and Wolf. Ison will be joined in conversation by Eden Elieff.

At the Hour Between Dog and Wolf is the story of a twelve-year-old Parisian Jewish girl in World War II France, living “in hiding” as a Catholic orphan with a family in a small village.

When Danielle Marton’s father is killed during the early days of the German Occupation, her mother sends her to live in a quiet farming town near Limoges in Vichy France. Now called Marie-Jeanne Chantier, Danielle struggles to balance the truth of what’s happened to her family and her country with the lies she must tell to keep herself safe. At first, she’s bitter about being left behind by her mother, and horrified at having to milk the cow and memorize Catholic prayers for church. But as the years pass and the Occupation worsens, Danielle finds it easier to suppress her former life entirely, and Marie-Jeanne becomes less and less of an act. By the time she’s fifteen and there is talk amongst the now divided town of an Allied invasion, not only has Danielle lost the memories of her father’s face and the smell of her mother’s perfume, but her very self, transforming into a strict Catholic and an anti-Semitic, fervent disciple of fascism.

Tara Ison is the author of the novels The List (Scribner), A Child out of Alcatraz (Faber & Faber; a Finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and Rockaway (Counterpoint/Soft Skull Press; featured as one of the “Best Books of Summer” in O, The Oprah Magazine). Her essay collection, Reeling Through Life: How I Learned to Live, Love, and Die at the Movies, Winner of the PEN Southwest Book Award for Best Creative Nonfiction, and her short story collection, Ball, were both published by Counterpoint/Soft Skull Press. Ison’s short fiction, essays, poetry, and book reviews have appeared in Tin House, O, The Oprah Magazine, Salon, The Kenyon Review, The Rumpus, TriQuarterly, Publishers Weekly, The Week, The Mississippi Review, LA Weekly, the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Chicago Tribune, the San Jose Mercury News, Nerve.com, Electric Literature, and numerous anthologies. She’s also the co-writer of the cult movie Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead. She is the recipient of 2020 and 2008 National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship and a 2008 COLA Individual Artist Grant, as well as multiple Yaddo fellowships, a fellowship at Hawthornden Castle in Scotland, a Rotary Foundation Scholarship for International Study, a Brandeis National Women’s Committee Award, a Thurber House Fiction Writer-in-Residence Fellowship, the Simon Blattner Fellowship from Northwestern University, and a California Arts Council Artists’ Fellowship Award. Ison received her MFA in Fiction & Literature from Bennington College. She has taught creative writing at Washington University in St. Louis, Northwestern University, The Ohio State University, Goddard College, Antioch University Los Angeles, and UC Riverside Palm Desert’s MFA in Creative Writing program. She is currently Professor of Fiction at Arizona State University. Her new novel is At the Hour Between Dog and Wolf (Ig Publishing).

Eden Elieff was born and raised in Hyde Park, attended KAM Temple with her family growing up, and was confirmed there. Her Hyde Park connection continued as she received her A.B in English from the University of Chicago and in fact lived in the old dorm next to the International House as a student. Eden’s extended family has been affiliated with KAM-Isaiah Israel through four generations. Eden befriended Tara Ison while both were MFA students at the Writing Seminars at Bennington College. Eden currently lives in Dallas, Texas, where she has served as a docent at the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum for six years.

This event is co-sponsored by International House Global Voices Performing Arts and Lecture Series, Seminary Co-op Bookstores, and the KAM Isaiah Israel Congregation.

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