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Julia Glass, photo by Dennis Cowley
Julia Glass


NYS Writers Institute, April 3, 2014
4:15 p.m. Seminar | Campus Center Room 375, Campus Center, Uptown Campus
8:00 p.m. Reading | Huxley Theatre, NYS Museum, Cultural Education Center, Downtown Albany

Julia Glass, National Book Award-winning author of Three Junes (2002), will read from her new novel, And the Dark Sacred Night (2014), on Thursday, April 3, 2014 at 8 p.m. in the Huxley Theatre of the New York State Museum, Cultural Education Center, at the Empire State Plaza in downtown Albany. Earlier that same day at 4:15 p.m., the author will offer an informal seminar in Campus Center 375 on the University at Albany’s uptown campus. Free and open to the public, the events are sponsored by the New York State Writers Institute and the Friends of the New York State Library.


Julia Glass published her very first novel, Three Junes (2002), at the age of 46. The book earned extraordinary praise from reviewers and was the surprise winner of that year’s National Book Award for Fiction. In a 2002 profile of Glass that appeared in New York magazine, Meryl Gordon said, “Jaws dropped when unknown author Julia Glass beat a field crowded with literary luminaries to win the National Book Award for her debut novel, Three Junes. Why haven’t we heard from this 46-year-old West Village mom before now? Just call her a late bloomer.”

Glass’s newest novel, And the Dark Sacred Night (2014), is set in the Vermont woods and on Cape Cod. It tells the story of a middle-aged man, Kit Noonan, an out-of-work art historian who seeks to discover the identity of the father he never knew. The novel revisits characters from Glass’s previous books, including Fenno McLeod, the gay Greenwich Village bookseller who was a major character in Three Junes.

And the Dark Sacred NightA Library Journal review of And the Dark Sacred Night described the novel as, “Examining complicated family relationships among several families whose lives intertwine in unexpected ways, this [is a] warm and engaging story about what it means to be a father….”   

Three Junes presented the loves, sorrows, and secrets of a Scottish family during three different months of June over the course of a decade. In 1989, aging Paul McLeod, a recent widower on vacation in Greece, falls in love with a young American artist. In 1995, after McLeod’s death, three grown sons gather for a reunion at their ancestral Scottish home. In 1999, McLeod’s son Fenno, an introspective gay man, is at a dinner party on the Long Island shore where he happens to meet Fern Olitsky, the woman who stole his father’s heart.

The New Yorker reviewer called Three Junes, “Enormously accomplished….rich, absorbing, and full of life.” Katherine Wolff, writing for the New York Times said, “Masterfully, Three Junes shows how love follows a circuitous path, how its messengers come to wear disguises. Julia Glass has written a generous book about family expectations— but also about happiness, luck and, as she puts it, the ‘grandiosity of genes.’”

Other novels by Glass include The Widower’s Tale (2010), I See You Everywhere (2008), and The Whole World Over (2006). The Widower’s Tale tells the story of an elderly man, Percy Darling, who allows a preschool to take over a barn on his property. Percy must find ways to cope and redefine himself when his private world is suddenly overrun by children, parents, and teachers. The Richmond Times-Dispatch called it, “A masterful exploration of the secret places of the human heart.” Entertainment Weekly called it, “Tremendously engaging,” and said, “It’s a large, endearing cast, bursting with emotional and social issues, and Glass slips effortlessly between their individual and enmeshed dramas.”

For additional information, contact the Writers Institute at 518-442-5620 or online at https://www.albany.edu/writers-inst.