Here from her home in Germany outside Berlin is Nell Zink. She has stirred the fiction waters in this country, both with the story of her becoming a published writer, and then the books she has now produced in fairly short order, each critically acclaimed. 2014 begat The Wallcreeper. Last year, Mislaid. She is here tonight an audacious new novel, Nicotine (Ecco). “When we first meet Penny, she’s 12, naked, and smoking a cigarette in her father’s sweat lodge in upstate New York. Eleven years later, she’s an unemployed business school graduate sitting in her dying father’s New Jersey hospital room. This loss devastates Penny in all the usual ways, and Zink’s depictions of grief and—especially—the strange state of waiting for someone to die are honest and real and occasionally lovely … The resulting disaster is spellbinding, but even the quiet moments here are delightful because Zink does such an incredible job of depicting weirdos as real, smart, vulnerable, complicated people.” - Kirkus Reviews. “Zink’s novel of anarchy in life, love, and real estate focuses on Penny Baker, daughter of healing expert and retired shaman Norm Baker, who dies after a prolonged painful illness, leaving behind Penny and her disjointed family … Scenes of watching a loved one die and anarchists giving more family support than family add a touching chord to this impertinent, mordant portrait of a corroded society badly in need of reclamation.”- Publishers Weekly.