Common Reading Initiative at Penn State Altoona for First-year Students
Sponsored by the Division of Arts and Humanities
Maria Romasco Moore's Ghostographs will be the Common Read for the 2021-22 academic year.
Brief, crystalline stories combine with vintage photographs to illuminate the hidden terrain of childhood and the pain of growing up, all in one small town at the edge of an abyss where the narrator comes of age among family, friends, and phantoms. It’s a place populated with charming and unforgettable characters, where housewives send away for mail-order babies and young girls glow on front porches on hot summer nights. Where men get in staring contests with lamps and great aunts live in castles and collect haunted dogs. Where games of hide and seek refuse to end. It’s a town full of secrets, where the hardships of adulthood threaten to invade the wild and magical domain of children. Haunting and evocative, funny and strange, the world of Ghostographs may be memory or might just be a trick of the light.
Ghostographs will lead faculty, staff, students, and community members into rich discussions of nostalgia’s powers, good and bad and how we have, how we do, and how we will view and treat each other as we attempt to form communities.
Romasco Moore, a native of Altoona, is the author of the two additional novels I Am the Ghost in Your House and Some Kind of Animal. Her stories have appeared or are forthcoming in Lightspeed, Fireside, DIAGRAM, Hobart, Interfictions, Kaleidotrope, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, and the anthology Women Destroy Science Fiction. She is a graduate of the Clarion West Writer’s Workshop and has an MFA from Southern Illinois University. She teaches writing at Columbus College of Art and Design.
Common Read is sponsored by Penn State Altoona’s Division of Arts and Humanities.