Classics Made New: Mona Awad & Randy Boyagoda at TIFA

October 25, 2021 @ 9:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Classics Made New: Mona Awad & Randy Boyagoda at TIFA

Revisit the classics! Randy Boyagoda is joined by fellow Canadian author Mona Awad in a discussion about their latest novels and entertaining approaches to blending the old with the new. In All’s Well, Awad harnesses classic Shakespeare when a modern theatre professor struggling with chronic pain experiences the challenges of staging one of The Bard’s most maligned works with a rogue cast of characters. Dante’s Indiana, the sequel to Boyagoda’s Original Prin, is an hommage to Dante Alighieri, as Prin goes to a small town in Indiana where he must begin building a million-dollar Inferno-inspired theme park. Join us for this conversation to learn more about the inspirations behind these unexpected and hilarious mash-ups. The event will take place on Monday, October 25 at 9PM EDT.

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Middle-aged, married, but living on his own, Prin has lost his way. Desperate for money and purpose, he moves to small-town Indiana to work for an evangelical millionaire who’s building a theme park inspired by Dante’s Inferno. He quickly becomes involved in the difficult lives of his co-workers and in the wider struggles of their opioid-ravaged community while trying to reconcile with his distant wife and distant God. Both projects spin out of control, and when a Black teenager is killed, creationists, politicians and protesters alike descend. In the midst of this American chaos, Prin risks everything to help the lost and angry souls around him while searching for his own way home.

Following Original Prin, a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice and Globe and Mail Best Book, Dante’s Indiana is affecting and strange, intimate and big-hearted—an extraordinary journey through the darkly divine comedies of our time.


Randy Boyagoda is the author of six books, including the novels Governor of the Northern Province, Beggar’s Feast, and Original Prin. His work has been nominated for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, IMPAC Dublin Literary Prize, and named a Globe and Mail Best Book of the year and New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice. An essayist, book critic and radio columnist, he is a professor of English at the University of Toronto, where he lives with his wife and their four daughters.


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