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Barbara Peters, owner of The Poisoned Pen, interviews Lili Wright (and also author Megan Miranda)
Dancing with the Tiger by
Call Number: Archives and Special Collections General Collection PS3623.R5547 D36 2016
Publication Date: 2016
When 30-year-old Anna Ramsey learns that a meth-addicted looter has dug up what might be the funerary mask of Montezuma, she books the next flight to Oaxaca. Determined to redeem her father, a discredited art collector, and to one-up her unfaithful fiancé, a museum curator, Anna hurls herself headlong into Mexico's underground art world. But others are chasing the treasure as well: the shape-shifting drug lord no one can really describe; the enigmatic American expat, who keeps his art collection locked in a chapel; the former museum director who traffics stolen works, and his housekeeper--deeply religious, a gay woman in a culture of machismo, dependent on a patron she loathes; the painter Salvador on his motorcycle, complex, sensual--but with secrets of his own. Anna soon realizes that everyone is masked--some literally, others metaphorically. Indeed, Dancing with the Tiger is a splendid reminder that throughout human history, cultures have revered masks: whether in the theater or in war, for religious purposes, or to conceal identity, masks are as universal as our desire to transform ourselves, to change. Anna, without an ounce of self-pity despite traumatic losses, stands out as a heroine for our times as, traveling alone, she finds the courage to show her true face.
Learning to Float by
Call Number: DePauw Authors HQ800.2 .W75 2002
Publication Date: 2002
Lili Wright is a thirty-something woman on the emotional lam. Faced with a choice between two men--Stuart, the steady veterinarian, and Peter, the dreamy writer--she climbs into her car and leaves them both behind. With only a borrowed dog named Brando for company and a map of twelve states in her pocket, Lili sets out on a road trip, hoping that by setting herself in motion she will find a way to settle down. Charting a course from Cadillac Mountain in Maine to the faded glory of Key West, Florida, she camps out on beaches and crashes on couches, in sketchy motels and even in a cop's trailer. She travels not only south, but also back in time, trying to figure out why previous relationships with a Nantucket waiter, a French tennis clown, a Utah ski bum, and others flared and fizzled. Along the way, Lili meets a string of unlikely gurus, including a well-worn shrimper, a vegan astrologer, and even a woman who marries herself. These and other unassuming strangers offer offbeat wisdom and guidance as Lili struggles to understand the nature of love, the voodoo of sex, and how couples can settle down without settling for. Between adventures, Lili tackles tough questions: Why does everything love touches turn risky? Does staying with the same person mean staying the same? Where does love come from, and where does it go? By journey’s end, this restless traveler begins to see how she can share her life with just one other person, and how love, like water, can make a body float. Lili Wright’s engaging memoir from the road updates the tradition of the picaresque traveler’s tale. With unflinching honesty and refreshing wit, she captures the torn emotions, comic misfires, and inevitable trade-offs felt by young people everywhere.