The Center for Fiction welcomes Mathias Énard (Compass), winner of the Prix Goncourt, to the stage for a discussion on his long awaited new novel: The Annual Banquet of the Gravediggers’ Guild. In Énard’s erudite and earthy story, an anthropology student settles in a village in the marshlands of western France, determined to understand the essence of the local culture. What he doesn’t know is that once a year, in this seemingly ordinary place, Death and the living observe a temporary truce during a gargantuan three-day feast where gravediggers gorge themselves on food, drink, and language. Author and critic Merve Emre (The Personality Brokers) joins Mathias in conversation about his riotous novel of life, death, and love. After the conversation, Énard will sign books.