Azar Nafisi to launch 2017 Winter Words series in Aspen |

Azar Nafisi to launch 2017 Winter Words series in Aspen

Staff report
Azar Nafisi
Stanley Stankisi/Courtesy photo |

Aspen Words announced an eight-author, five-event lineup for its 2017 Winter Words series on Thursday.

Celebrating its 20th year, the series will open Jan. 17 with bestselling “Reading Lolita in Tehran” author Azar Nafisi.

“The Emerald Mile” author Kevin Fedarko and Aspen native photographer Pete McBride will take the stage Feb. 7 to discuss their historic hike through the length of the Grand Canyon, which the pair covered in the September issue of National Geographic.

Yaa Gyasi, who broke onto the world’s literary scene with her acclaimed debut “Homegoing” this year, will headline on a to-be-determined date in February or March.

Adam Gopnik — a staff writer at the New Yorker since 1986 and most recently the author of “The Table Comes First” — will speak March 21.

And the series closes with three Aspen Summer Words alumni who published their debut novels in 2016 — all three of them coming-of-age stories about young women. Stephanie Danler’s “Sweetbitter” was an instant national bestseller, Anna Noyes’ “Goodnight, Beautiful Women” was named a New York Times Editors’ Choice and Molly Prentiss’ “Tuesday Nights in 1980” was long-listed for the Center for Fiction’s prestigious First Novel Prize. The trio will discuss their work April 4.

“Our 20th anniversary lineup brings writers of multiple generations, diverse heritage and exceptional talent to Aspen,” said Aspen Words Executive Director Adrienne Brodeur. “Whether it’s Yaa Gyasi’s cross continental exploration of slavery, Kevin Fedarko’s riveting adventure through the Grand Canyon, or Adam Gopnik’s musings on American food culture, we hope that these writers’ diverse perspectives will inspire both our Paepcke audience, as well as young writers and readers in classrooms throughout the Roaring Fork Valley.”

All events take place at Paepcke Auditorium on the campus of the Aspen Institute. Events run 6 to 7 p.m. (doors open at 5:30 p.m.). A book signing will follow each discussion and Explore Booksellers will have books available for purchase.

Individual tickets are $25, Aspen Words member series passes are $60 and nonmember passes are $80. Tickets and series passes will go on sale Nov. 18 at the Wheeler Opera House box office and