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Nancy Lemann

There and back: the author of Lives of the Saints discusses her career, religion, and influences

It’s a familiar story, but one no less tragic because of its familiarity: a female author makes a huge splash with her debut novel, but despite her promise, the doors slam shut and she fades from view. Nancy Lemann, author of the cult novel Lives of the Saints (1985), discusses the experience of that career trajectory, as well as the recent, renewed enthusiasm for her writing in the pages of Harper’s, the Paris Review, and elsewhere. With candor and her distinctive sensibility, Lemann also lays out her myriad influences, from Walker Percy to Evelyn Waugh.

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June 2023

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