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About Katherine Hill
With Sarah Chihaya, Merve Emre, and Jill Richards, she is also co-author of The Ferrante Letters: An Experiment in Collective Criticism (Columbia University Press 2020).
Her fiction, essays, and reviews have appeared in numerous publications, including AGNI, The Believer, Bookforum, Colorado Review, The Common, The Guardian, The Literary Review, n+1, The Nation, The New Republic, The Paris Review Daily, Philadelphia Inquirer, Post45, Post Road, San Francisco Chronicle, and Tin House.
Katherine is an assistant professor of English at Adelphi University, where she teaches creative writing and literature to undergraduate and MFA students. Her writing has been awarded fellowships from the New York Public Library, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Corporation of Yaddo. Born in Washington D.C., she now lives with her husband and daughter in Brooklyn.
Find her on Twitter @KHill0.
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Like few other works of contemporary literature, Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels found an audience of passionate and engaged readers around the world. Inspired by Ferrante’s intense depiction of female friendship and women’s intellectual lives, four critics embarked upon a project that was both work and play: to create a series of epistolary readings of the Neapolitan Quartet that also develops new ways of reading and thinking together.
In a series of intertwined, original, and daring readings of Ferrante’s work and her fictional world, Sarah Chihaya, Merve Emre, Katherine Hill, and Jill Richards strike a tone at once critical and personal, achieving a way of talking about literature that falls between the seminar and the book club. Their letters make visible the slow, fractured, and creative accretion of ideas that underwrites all literary criticism and also illuminate the authors’ lives outside the academy. The Ferrante Letters offers an improvisational, collaborative, and cumulative model for reading and writing with others, proposing a new method the authors call collective criticism. A book for fans of Ferrante and for literary scholars seeking fresh modes of intellectual exchange, The Ferrante Letters offers incisive criticism, insouciant riffs, and the pleasure of giving oneself over to an extended conversation about fiction with friends.
“A Short Move is an ode to both the singular glory and the heavy cost of greatness. Katherine Hill uses the rhythms of the sports novel to explore everything from the complexities of masculinity to the illusion that is the American Dream—and makes the form her own in the process. This is a deeply felt and beautifully expansive novel, one that captures vital dimensions of American life.”—Laura van den Berg
“In Katherine Hill’s audacious new novel, A Short Move, football is not only the subject, but a lens through which Hill examines contemporary life under capitalism. In Hill’s sharply observed, brilliant prose, this ur-American game ultimately becomes a metaphor for human relationships, for the ecstasy and vulnerability within the body, and for life itself. This is a beautifully written novel about loss and endurance, about men and women doing the best they can with the gifts they’ve been given.”—René Steinke, author of Friendswood
“A Short Move is an expansive and beautifully written novel. Through the story of star linebacker Mitch Wilkins, Katherine Hill explores the sacrifices men make to become legends, and the toll their fame takes on everyone close to them. This book is about more than just the complicated and contradictory life of a football star who wishes he were a better man; it is a profound depiction of masculinity, obsession, power, and the unexpected beauty we find even in our darkest hours.”—Tom McAllister, author of How to Be Safe
"I submit that there is nothing you can’t get to about American culture through sports, and I further submit, as evidence, Exhibit A: A Short Move, Katherine Hill’s splendidly written and smartly observed second novel."—David Shields, director of Marshawn Lynch: A History and author of Black Planet: Facing Race During an NBA Season
"Fans of sweeping family epics will enjoy this dissection of fame, sports, and the drive for connection."—Publishers Weekly
In a small Virginia town in 1971, a high school football star runs out on his pregnant girlfriend. Six years later, that child meets his father for the first time and discovers the athlete within. Before long he is on the fast-track to the NFL, coached by a relentless Vietnam veteran uncle, nourished by a patient working mom, and defended by an ambitious girlfriend, all of whom tie their own hopes to his career. When he finally makes it, as Mitch "Wilk" Wilkins, New England's fearsome middle linebacker, it all seems preordained. Then, almost immediately, his life begins to fall apart: a billionaire owns him, his marriage is on the rocks, and his body is betraying him in stages. As Mitch and his wounded family press on, seeking meaning in a relentlessly incentive-driven and forward-moving life, the sacrifices necessary for success in sports—and in attaining the “American Dream”—are laid painfully and tragically bare.
Life hasn’t always been perfect for Abe and Cassandra Green, but an afternoon on the San Francisco Bay might be as good as it gets. Abe is a rheumatologist, piloting his coveted new boat. Cassandra is a sculptor, finally gaining modest attention for her art. Their beautiful daughter Elizabeth is heading to Harvard in the fall. Somehow, they’ve made things work. But then, tensions overflow, and they plunge into a terrible fight. In a fit of fury, Abe throws himself off the boat.
“A bittersweet tale of breakup and forgiveness” (O, The Oprah Magazine), The Violet Hour follows a modern family through past and present. As Cassandra, Abe, and Elizabeth navigate the passage of time—the expectations of youth, the concessions of middle age, the headiness of desire, the bitterness of loss—they must come to terms with the fragility of their intimacy, the strange legacies they inherit from their parents, and the kind of people they want to be.
Exquisitely written, The Violet Hour is “a rewarding family saga reminiscent of Anne Tyler’s novels...Hill’s story unfurls from the kind of sensational marital spat that makes you feel better about your own imperfect union…wonderfully witty and assured” (The Washington Post Book World).