News Release

Destined to become a modern classic… Library Journal. Peter Selgin’s memoir The Inventors, introduction by Lidia Yuknavitch, released by Hawthorne Books April 1, 2016

For immediate release 19 Oct 2015

Contact: 503-327-8849 rhughes@hawthornebooks.com |

“Peter Selgin is a born writer, capable of taking any subject and exploring it from a new angle, with wit, grace, and erudition.”—Oliver Sacks


Both Selgin’s father and the man he calls “the teacher” led remarkable lives. Among other things, Paul Selgin helped design the so-called “proximity fuse” that hastened the end of World War II. As for the teacher, he became a forceful advocate for human rights and diversity, championing the cause of indigenous peoples and refugees from Southeast Asia, while insisting that they not lose sight of their history and cultural heritage—ironically, since the teacher did everything he could to obliterate his own. For very different reasons, both men felt compelled to reinvent themselves in opposition to their pasts. The Inventors is the story of how these two men shaped the author’s life and world. It’s also the story of a relationship between a boy and his teacher that crossed and defied boundaries, a relationship that was equally inspiring and destructive.


“This story is about what we make and how we make it. Selves, lives, love stories, life stories, death stories. It is also the story of how creation and destruction are always the other side of each other. And like the lyric language so gorgeously invented in this book that it nearly killed me, its meanings are endlessly in us. Writers live within language, and so in some ways, you might say we are at the epicenter.”—Lidia Yuknavitch from the Introduction


Peter Selgin teaches writing at Georgia College and lives on Lake Sinclair in Milledgeville, Georgia.

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