An Evening With Abraham Verghese

It has been fourteen years since I first met Abraham Verghese in Miami while at the Miami Book Fair. We were celebrating his wildly successful first novel, CUTTING FOR STONE.

We made the almost impossible happen on Monday in Miami. We met at Books and Books in Coral Gables before his event with the bookstore. We were able to steal away and talk without interruption, catch up, and my husband, Jack, got to meet the great man, finally. It’s been quite the journey to get to this point. This is why I do what I do. I love helping behind the scenes. The rewards are monumental.

Abraham spoke to a group of close to 80 readers at Books and Books on Monday night. It was one of those amazing events that you only dream of. And, get a load of this. Abraham and I were texting earlier in the evening. Thank God I mentioned the time for the event was seven. His agenda had him there at eight. Dear God. He even told the audience that I had saved the evening. Scary stuff. But the show went on with him reading two entertaining passages in the book. He had everyone in the palm of his hand including my husband.

Abrham Verghese
The Covenant of Water

For those of you who might be thinking THE COVENANT OF WATER is too literary, it’s so readable. My daughter told me this morning that she is reading it now and finding it very easy to read. Yet it’s a great literary novel! Don’t forget you can download the audio. Abraham’s voice is simply perfect.

We crammed in a lot in a 24 hour period. We lunched on Miracle Mile at a little place called Crema. Then enjoyed an amazing dinner at an Argentinian restaurant named Baire’s Grill nearby. Jack was thrilled to discover they were offering half price on all their bottles of wine for Monday nights. The short ribs served Argentine style were simply divine as was the wine.

Here on the SW coast of Florida we lack a certain measure of culture. Yes, we have a few bookstores. Not many Indys anymore. And Barnes & Noble stores have changed so much. They used to have large book signings with big name authors. Not so much now. We have Artis-Naples. And there are literary societies in some communities. But nothing like in Miami. I would love to be able to attend more of these events. Mostly, they are without cost unless you purchase a book to support the store and the authors. The drive getting into Miami is treacherous. That’s the only way to put it. But it was worth it to meet up with Abraham and hear him talk about his journey…

I see that Elaine Newton has posted her summer reading list and of course she has THE COVENANT OF WATER on it. It’s a great list, the best in years. You can check it out by clicking above highlighted area.

I’m working on finishing my own summer reading list as we speak. Soon!

11 thoughts on “An Evening With Abraham Verghese

  1. Hi Jean,
    How great it was for you to visit with Mr. Verghese again. I’m loving his new book you so generously gave me, and I’m reading it now while in Belgrade, Serbia! On to Bulgaria tomorrow. Take care.
    Susan Shamey

  2. Hi Jean,
    How wonderful it was for you to visit with Mr. Verghese again. I’m reading his new book which you so generously gave me now while I’m in Belgrade. Tomorrow on to Bulgaria!
    Take care,

  3. It sounded as though you had the perfect reunion. Looking forward to reading the book. Also, I would suggest, if you haven’t read it already, the book “beyond that, the Sea“ by Laura Spence-Ash.

    Lovely story, one I will keep to read again,

  4. So glad your visit went well. How exciting!

    I haven’t read the book yet…I’m waiting for the summer when I have no pressure and can read it and relax.

    By the way, I read The House of Eve (I see it’s on Elaine’s list). I LOVED it.

    Hope all is well. Looking forward to seeing you next year at Wyndemere.



    • Judy, I think this is the best list Elaine has had in years. I’m pleased with it. And thanks for letting me know that you loved THE HOUSE OF EVE. I will put it on my TBR list. Cheers.

  5. Hi Jean,

    What a wonderful time you must have had in Miami! And to meet and spend time with Abraham Verghese!!!! At this point, I am 1/3 of the way through his book and am loving it. His descriptions of his relationships with people I feel that I can reach out and touch them. I can’t wait to continue reading to see where this story goes. Thank you Jean for all your recommendations, but especially this one. I can hardly wait for our meeting at our Book Talk in November to see and hear you, in person.

    Barbara Belliveau

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