Join us for an ongoing series in partnership with host and African Book Club co-Founder Faith Adiele. April's book selection is A Down Home Meal for These Difficult Times by Meron Hadero. This program will be hosted in-person at MoAD and author Meron Hadero will be in attendance for the program.
How to participate: Get a copy of the book, read it in advance of the meeting, and then discuss the book with a group of people interested in reading African Literature in-person at MoAD on Sunday April 30th from 3-4:30pm (PDT). Copies of A Down Home Meal for These Difficult Times are available from the MoAD Bookstore.
Set across the U.S. and abroad, Meron Hadero’s stories feature immigrants, refugees, and those on the brink of dispossession, all struggling to begin again, all fighting to belong. Moving through diverse geographies and styles, this captivating collection follows characters on the journey toward home, which they dream of, create and redefine, lose and find and make their own. Beyond migration, these stories examine themes of race, gender, class, friendship and betrayal, the despair of loss and the enduring resilience of hope.
Winner of the 2021 AKO Caine Prize for African Writing, “The Street Sweep” is about an enterprising young man on the verge of losing his home in Addis Ababa who pursues an improbable opportunity to turn his life around. Appearing in Best American Short Stories, “The Suitcase” follows a woman visiting her country of origin for the first time and finds that an ordinary object opens up an unexpected, complex bridge between worlds. Shortlisted for the 2019 Caine Prize, “The Wall” portrays the intergenerational friendship between two refugees living in Iowa who have connections to Germany before the fall of the Berlin Wall. A Best American Short Stories notable, “Mekonnen aka Mack aka Huey Freakin’ Newton” is a coming-of-age tale about an Ethiopian immigrant in Brooklyn encountering nuances of race in his new country.
Kaleidoscopic, powerful, and illuminative, the stories in A Down Home Meal for These Difficult Times expand our understanding of the essential and universal need for connection and the vital refuge of home—and announce a major new talent in Meron Hadero.
About the Author
Meron Hadero is an Ethiopian American who was born in Addis Ababa and came to the US via Germany as a young child. Meron’s short stories have won the 2021 Caine Prize for African Writing, have been shortlisted for the 2019 Caine Prize for African Writing, and appear in Best American Short Stories, Ploughshares, McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, Zyzzyva, The Iowa Review, Missouri Review, 40 Short Stories: A Portable Anthology, and others. She’s also been published in The New York Times Book Review and the anthology The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives, and will appear in the forthcoming anthology Letter to a Stranger: Essays to the Ones Who Haunt Us. A 2019–2020 Steinbeck Fellow at San Jose State University, and a fellow at Yaddo, Ragdale, and MacDowell, Meron holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of Michigan, a JD from Yale Law School (Washington State Bar), and a BA in history from Princeton with a certificate in American studies.