Immigrant Writing Series

In 2017 Greenlight launches a new Immigrant Writing Series, featuring literary events with a focus on the voices and experiences of immigrants. Events take place in our bookstore locations, and encompass a range of literary genres and event formats.  Events are free and open to the public.

“We live in a country and in a borough that was built by and thrives because of its immigrants,” says Greenlight’s co-owner Rebecca Fitting. “We wanted to create this reading series because it's vital that as a community and culture, our world view stays broad, open, supportive and wide. Reading fiction and stories is an important way of exposing ourselves to the lives and emotions of other people. Nonfiction provides history and facts, but fiction weaves empathy into the mix and allows us to view things from perspectives, cultures and worlds other than our own.”

Upcoming Events:

Fort Greene store:
Tuesday, March 7, 7:30 PM
Book launch: Mohsin Hamid presents Exit West
In conversation with Philip Gourevitch
Wine reception to follow

Acclaimed novelist Mohsin Hamid (How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia) returns to Greenlight to launch his newest politically astute and structurally fantastical work. In a city on the brink of civil war, two young people just embarking on a furtive love affair begin to hear whispers about doors—doors that can whisk people far away, if perilously and for a price. Named one of the most anticipated books of 2017 by Time Magazine, The New York Times, Washington Post and The Huffington Post, Exit West is a love story that unfolds across the rapidly changing face of a volatile world. Hamid discusses his work with Philip Gourevitch, longtime staff writer for The New Yorker and a former editor of The Paris Review, and author of several books including We Wish To Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families. A wine reception follows to celebrate the launch of Exit West.


Prospect Lefferts Gardens store:
Tuesday, March 14, 7:30 PM
Book launch: Deepak Unnikrishnan presents Temporary People
In conversation with Mia Alvar

Greenlight joins Brooklyn publisher Restless Books in celebrating the publication of Deepak Unnikrishnan's debut novel Temporary People. The winner of the first Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing, Temporary People takes on the humanitarian crisis of the so-called "guest workers" of the Gulf with visionary flair; a starred review in Kirkus hails it as "an enchanting, unparalleled anthem of displacement and repatriation." Unnikrishnan discusses his work with fellow immigrant author Mia Alvar, whose debut collection of stories In the Country won the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction, among other honors. A wine reception follows to celebrate the book’s launch.


Fort Greene store:
Monday, April 3, 7:30 PM
Comics as a Force for Social Change
John Jennings & Damian Duffy present Kindred
Thi Bui presents The Best We Could Do

As comics continue to gain popularity in mainstream media, the notion of the comics creator as a community organizer and cultural worker becomes increasingly relevant. New York Times bestselling illustrator John Jennings and writer Damian Duffy (Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation, based on the seminal sci-fi novel of slavery by Octavia Butler), along with debut author Thi Bui (The Best We Could Do: An Illustrated Memoir, the story of an immigrant family’s journey from Vietnam to America), discuss the important role of comics in today’s turbulent political landscape. Bui, Duffy, and Jennings will explore how comics authors and illustrators can foster social change both by creating work that gives underrepresented communities a voice and brings new, diverse talent into the spotlight, as well as by using their influence to shake up the culture and norms of the book world.