Author of the "The Best People in the World," Justin Tussing will visit campus on Monday for a reading of his work.

Since its publication in 2006, Tussing's novel has received widespread critical acclaim. Referring to the writer as "a kind of Wacko-Thoreau," the New York Times called the work "one bright book of exuberant American life."

Set in the 1970s, "The Best People in the World" tells the harrowing tale of three people who try to break free of their lives in Paducah, Ky. by moving to an abandoned house in Vermont.

A graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, Tussing currently teaches English at the University of Southern Maine. The author first came to prominence when his short story, "The Laser Age," was published in The New Yorker's 2005 Début Fiction issue.

Associate Professor of English Brock Clarke, a friend of Tussing's, arranged for the author's visit.

"I love his work—both his novel and his short fiction—for its sense of humor, its sense of danger, its intelligence, its willingness to take on big subjects but in unlikely ways, from odd angles," said Clarke.

He noted that it has not been announced what pieces Tussing will read.

"Whatever he reads from, I have full faith that it'll make me, and whomever else is in the crowd, feel like the time spent listening to Justin read is time well spent," Clarke said.

Tussing's reading will take place in the Faculty Room of Massachusetts Hall on Monday from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.

-Compiled by Amalie MacGowan.