The Word Exchange
Imagine a world in which books, libraries and newspapers are things of the past. A world in which we spend our time glued to handheld devices that not only keep us in constant communication but have become so intuitive as to hail taxis before we leave our offices and even create and sell language in a digital marketplace called the Word Exchange. Anana Johnson works with her father, Doug, at the NORTH AMERICAN DICTIONARY OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE, and they're hard at work on the final edition that will ever be printed. Then one evening, Doug disappears and Anana discovers a single written clue: ALICE. It's a code word Doug devised to signal if he ever fell into harm's way. Joined by Bart, her bookish colleague, Anana's search for Doug will take her into dark basement incinerator rooms, underground passages, secret meetings, and ultimately to the hallowed halls of the OXFORD ENGLISH DICTIONARY - the spiritual home of the written word.
Alena Graedon graduated from Brown in 2002 and received her MFA in 2007 from Columbia. She worked as the Manager of Literary Awards and Membership at the PEN America Center before leaving to finish THE WORD EXCHANGE, her first novel, with the help of fellowships at several artist colonies. Her writing has been translated into nine languages. She lives in Brooklyn.