Welcome to the Book Marks Questionnaire, where we ask authors questions about the books that have shaped them.
This week, we spoke to Sabrina & Corina author and National Book Award Finalist, Kali Fajardo-Anstine.
Book Marks: First book you remember loving?
Kali Fajardo-Anstine: The Velveteen Rabbit as a baby girl, and later, as not so much a baby, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe. My 4th grade teacher sent me into the hallway for reading The Chronicles of Narnia inside my social studies textbook.
BM: Favorite re-read?
KFA: I re-read often—usually Alice Munro, Katherine Anne Porter, Edward P. Jones, Jack Gilbert, Toni Morrison, among others.
BM: What book do you think your book is most in conversation with?
KFA: I hope glimmers of many books reveal themselves in my pages, but have to say Lost in the City by Edward P. Jones.
BM: A book that blew your mind?
KFA: Geek Love by Katherine Dunn.
BM: Last book you read?
KFA: Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann.
BM: A book that made you cry?
KFA: Pale Horse, Pale Rider by Katherine Anne Porter. I first read this years ago in a Laramie, Wyoming apartment and I had to momentarily stop to allow myself to feel such sadness and beauty.
BM: A book that actually made you laugh out loud?
KFA: Heads of the Colored People by Nafissa Thompson-Spires. I was cackling by the first story.
BM: Favorite book to give as a gift?
KFA: The Art of Losing: Poems of Grief and Healing, edited by Kevin Young, and Jesus’ Son by Denis Johnson.
BM: Classic book on your To Be Read pile?
KFA: Don’t judge me—Moby-Dick. I know, I know. I need to do it, already.
BM: Favorite book no one has heard of?
KFA: I wouldn’t say no one, but I’d like more people to know about The Rain God by Arutro Islas.
BM: Favorite book you were assigned in high school?
BM: Book(s) you’re reading right now?
KFA: The Mountains Sing by Nguyen Phan Que Mai.
BM: Favorite children’s book?
KFA: The Last Elegant Bear by Dennis Kyte.
BM: Book you wish would be adapted for a film/tv show?
Kali Fajardo-Anstine is from Denver, Colorado. Her fiction has appeared in The American Scholar, Boston Review, Bellevue Literary Review, The Idaho Review, Southwestern American Literature, and elsewhere. Kali has received fellowships from MacDowell Colony, the Corporation of Yaddo, and Hedgebrook. She received her MFA from the University of Wyoming and has lived across the country, from Durango, Colorado, to Key West, Florida.
Kali Fajardo-Anstine’s Sabrina & Corina is out now in paperback from One World