Tom Piazza was born on Long Island and graduated from Williams College in Massachusetts. He is also
Tom Piazza was born on Long Island and graduated from Williams College in Massachusetts. He is also a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Known both as a fiction writer and as a music writer, his work has appeared in many magazines and other publications, including the New York Times, the Oxford American, the Atlantic Monthly, the New Republic, the Village Voice, the Quarterly, Story, and American Short Fiction.
Listed are Tom's available books.
Tom Piazza's Why New Orleans Matters was the book that defined New Orleanians' response to Hurricane Katrina and its devastation of the people and culture of that great city. Now, in CITY OF REFUGE, this brilliantly talented, award-winning writer reaches deeper and wider, to offer a shattering, panoramic novel that traces the stories of two families, one white and one black, as their lives are torn apart by the storm and then slowly stitched back together in its aftermath.
In August 2005, SJ Williams, a carpenter who has lived the Lower Ninth Ward all his life, is headed for a confrontation with his young nephew Wesley, who has just been arrested for beating up his girlfriend. SJ's older sister Lucy, Wesley's mother, is a soulful mess beloved by everyone, but she has been unable to corral her son, and SJ fears he is about to be lost for good. Meanwhile, across town, Craig Donaldson, a Midwestern transplant and the editor of the city's (fictitious) weekly newspaper, is facing deepening cracks in his own family. Craig's love for New Orleans music and culture brought them to the city, but his wife Alice's alarm at the city's crime, poverty, and bad schools has become an ever-widening wedge between her and Craig, and their two young children Annie and Malcolm.
When the storm breaks, and the levee with it, SJ's home is flooded and his family scattered