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One Book | One Community 2016

One Book | One Community 2016

The Imperial Wife

Thursday, November 24, 2016 to Saturday, December 24, 2016

Irina Reyn's The Imperial Wife, 
this year's pick for
One Book | One Community

For the sixth consecutive year, Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership is pleased to spearhead the Chicago community's Jewish Book Month initiative, One Book | One Community.

As in previous years, a single book has been selected as the focus of a series of activities and resources for the Chicago Jewish community.

This year's book is The Imperial Wife, in which author Irina Reyn intertwines the stories of two determined immigrants. One is a rising Jewish/Russian art specialist at a top New York auction house in the present day. The other is the future Catherine the Great (up-and-coming empress) as she maneuvers through the 18th-century Russian court.

Dazzling and insanely ambitious
— Gary Shteyngart, New York Times
bestselling author of Little Failure

The most satisfying novel I’ve read
in a long, long time
— Katie Crouch, New York Times
bestselling author of Abroad

Playful and profound

The book — which was released July 19, 2016 — is available in hardcover and ebook versions.

Read an excerpt

Resources for book groups and individual readers will be available online on the Spertus website this fall. Irina Reyn will join us for two Chicago-area programs in early December as part of Jewish Book Month.

Sign up (at right) for updates about author appearances and related programs and to be eligible for free books from this and previous One Book events.

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JUF News is the media sponsor of 
One Book | One Community.


About the Author

The Imperial Wife is Irina Reyn's second novel. Her first, What Happened to Anna K.won the Goldberg Prize for Jewish Fiction by Emerging Writers and was called “Sex and the City meets Fiddler on the Roof” by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Reyn teaches creative writing at the University of Pittsburgh. Her work as appeared in Jezebel, Kveller, One Story, Poets & Writers, The ForwardTown & Country, and other publications. Like one of the characters in The Imperial Wife, she immigrated to the United States from Moscow when she was seven years old, and she has been writing about the experience — in one way or another — ever since.

The Imperial Wife