Colum McCann (2010)

This event happened on Oct. 8 2010 at 7:30 pm at the Folger Shakespeare Library.

“Let the Great World Spin,” his 2009 National Book Award winner, concerns itself with both the high-profile feats of World Trade Center tightrope walker Philippe Petit and the smaller lives of those living below him in 1974 New York. McCann weaves the stories of characters seeking redemption — an Irish street priest, a mourning mother and a heroin-addicted prostitute, among others — into an American story of grace. - From the Washington Post

McCann’s reading inaugurates this season’s PEN/Faulkner reading series at the Folger, which boasts an impressive roster of literary stars and emerging writers. The events aim to transcend the mundane reading with evenings of music, politics and, of course, Irish raconteuring.

Colum McCann is the author of seven novels and three collections of stories. Born and raised in Dublin, Ireland, he has been the recipient of many international honours, including the National Book Award, the International Dublin Impac Prize, a Chevalier des Arts et Lettres from the French government, election to the Irish arts academy, several European awards, the 2010 Best Foreign Novel Award in China, and an Oscar nomination. In 2017 he was elected to the American Academy of Arts.  His work has been published in over 40 languages.  He is the co-founder of the non-profit global story exchange organisation, Narrative 4, and he teaches at the MFA program in Hunter College.  He lives in New York with his wife, Allison, and their family.