Bulgarian author Zachary Karabashliev to read April 1

Zachary Karabashliev, a Bulgarian-born fiction writer and playwright who lives in San Diego, will read from his debut novel, 18% Gray, on April 1 at Prairie Lights Books in Iowa City.

The book, written in his native language, was published in 2008 in Bulgaria and soon became a national bestseller. Moreover, Bulgarians voted it as one of their one hundred most-loved books of all time in the BBC campaign “The Big Read.” In February 2013, Open Letter Books at the University of Rochester has published an English translation of the novel, made by Angela Rodel.

The novel follows Zack, a Bulgarian photographer living in California, whose wife Stella has just disappeared. Distraught, he gets himself into trouble in Tijuana and ends up coming back to the U.S. with a large bag of pot in the back of a stolen van. He ditches his job monitoring clinical pharmaceutical tests and embarks on a picaresque cross-country journey to New York. There, he learns a bit more about himself and his life than he would care to know.”

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