Ariel Djanikian — The Prospectors - with Nate Brown — at Conn Ave

Upcoming Event
Saturday, November 4, 2023 - 5:00pm

The middle daughter of struggling California fruit farmers, Alice Bush is accustomed to feeling inferior and destitute. But when her elder sister's husband strikes a vein of gold in the Yukon Territory, Alice finally seizes control of her destiny by joining a wave of white settlers making the dangerous trek to the Klondike.

What follows is an awakening of ambition for the quietly opportunistic Alice, who, by luck and circumstance, becomes tightly intertwined in her sister and brother-in-law's newfound fortune, as well as the beginning of a generations-long family quest for wealth that unfolds against the icy Canadian wilderness and the booming oilfields of California.

One hundred years later, in 2015, Alice's great-great-granddaughter Anna must grapple with moral conflict and questions of justice as she travels to the Klondike to bequeath her would-be inheritance to the First Nations peoples who paid the price for its creation.

Bringing the Klondike and turn-of-the-century California to vivid life, Ariel Djanikian weaves an ambitious narrative of claiming the American Dream and its rippling effects across generations. Sweeping and awe-inspiring, The Prospectors is an unforgettable story of family loyalties that interrogates the often-overlooked hostilities and inequities born during the Gold Rush era.

Ariel Djanikian was born in Philadelphia and attended the University of Pennsylvania. She holds an MFA from the University of Michigan and is the previous recipient of a Fulbright grant, Meijer Fellowship, Cowden Award, and Hopwood Award. She is the author of the novel The Office of Mercy, and her writing has appeared in Tin House, Alaska Quarterly Review, Glimmer Train, The Millions, and The Rumpus. Her novel, The Prospectors, is forthcoming from William Morrow in Fall of 2023. In addition to Philadelphia and Ann Arbor, she has lived in Madison, WI, Irvine, CA, and Chapel Hill, NC. She currently lives near DC with her husband and children and teaches fiction writing at Georgetown University. She is Armenian-American and her last name is pronounced Ja-NICK-ee-in (yes, the “D” is silent).

Djanikan will be in conversation with Nate Brown, a Baltimore-based writer and editor whose stories and essays have appeared in the Iowa ReviewMississippi Review, Electric Literature, the Los Angeles Review of BooksPublisher’s WeeklyLitHub, and elsewhere. He is the managing editor of the award-winning literary journal American Short Fiction in Austin, TX, and is a Senior Lecturer at Johns Hopkins University.


This event is free with first come, first served seating.

5015 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
Fiction & Poetry
The Prospectors: A Novel By Ariel Djanikian Cover Image
ISBN: 9780063289734
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: William Morrow - October 3rd, 2023