This event will take place at Politics and Prose at The Wharf.
A prominent Belgian writer whose work has been translated in twenty-four countries, Verbeke has published fiction, short stories, and essays and is also a noted playwright, screenwriter, and columnist. Thirty Days, awarded the prestigious F. Bordewijk Prize for Best Novel, the NRC Book Award for Best Dutch-language Novel of the Year and the Opzij Literature Prize, is the story of Alphonse, a Senegalese man who migrates to Brussels. Alphonse works as a handyman but his true skill is his effortless ability to make people confide in him. As warm and engaging as its protagonist, Verbeke’s book evokes the realities of contemporary urban life through a weave of dreams, stories, and confessions.
Hemmerechts is the author of twenty novels as well as collections of short stories and essays—an impressive body of work which has earned both the Flemish State Prize and the Frans Kellendonk Prize. Her latest novel is a fearless examination of the psyche of a killer. Odette—based on Michelle Martin, who was convicted as an accomplice in the rapes and murders committed by her ex-husband, Marc Dutroux—identities herself, not without a certain pride, as the “most hated woman in Belgium.” As she recounts her role in the horrific crimes, her testimony reveals her as an insightful, reflective, and unremorseful observer.