The Art of Fielding with Chad Harbach

Thursday, May 10, 2012, 8:00 pm
Venue: Palace of Fine Arts

Series: Social Studies

Named one the top 10 Books of 2011 by The New York Times, Chad Harbach’s debut novel The Art of Fielding is smart, touching and deftly written.  Set at a fictional mid-western college, the novel centers around Henry Skrimshander, a virtuosic shortstop whose almost magical talents suddenly disappear.  Harbach’s expert knowledge of baseball produces a riveting portrait of the sport, but the book transcends the genre as it investigates several characters; struggles to forge identity and find connections to one another.  One of the most critically acclaimed books of the year, The Art of Fielding has received fervent praise among fellow writers.  Says Jonathan Franzen (Freedom, The Corrections), “First novels this complete and consuming come along very, very seldom.”  Scott Rudin will produce the HBO version of the book.  Chad Harbach grew up in Wisconsin and was educated at Harvard and the University of Virginia.  He is a co-founder and coeditor of the literary journal n+1.

Steven Winn is a freelance writer and critic who spent 28 years at the San Francisco Chronicle, the last six as the paper’s Arts and Culture Critic. His work has appeared in California, Good Housekeeping, Sports Illustrated and other publications. His memoir, Come Back, Como: Winning the Heart of a Reluctant Dog, was published in 2009.