O for October

This month in our Author Highlight Series, we are showcasing the works of playwright Eugene O’Neil, author and poet Ben Orki, and novelist George Orwell

Eugene O’Neil

Anna Christie, premiered on November 2, 1921 and won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1922

Anna Christie comes to New York to be reunited with her father. Not realizing that she has become a prostitute, her sentimental father comes to blows with a seaman who has been smitten by her. When Anna reveals her sordid past, both men abandon her, go their separate ways, get drunk, and unwittingly sign on for the same distant voyage. At the play’s end, Anna has agreed to wait for their return.

A Long Day’s Journey into Night premiered on February 2, 1956 and won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1957

A play in four acts and follows the Tyrone family in the summer of 1912. Mary Tyrone has come back after a stint in a sanatorium to recover from a morphine addiction. Edmund has tuberculosis. Over the course of the play all the men become severely drunk. All scenes take place in the family living room and either before or after a meal.

Strange Interlude is a play in 9 acts. It won the Pulitzer Prize in 1928.

It focuses on Nina Leeds who is devastated when her fiancé is killed in World War I. Nina begins a series of affairs before choosing to marry a fool. Soon after she marries Sam Evans, Nina discovers that insanity runs in the Evans family. Nina comes up with a solution to have a child with another man to avoid the gene trait. Her plan backfires when she and her lover actually fall in love. Twenty years later, Nina’s son Gavin is now an adult. Sam dies of a stroke before Nina can tell him the truth about Gavin. At the end of the play, Nina doesn’t marry Gavin’s real father and instead marries her admirer Charlie Marsden.

Ben Orki

The Freedom Artist

When Amalantis disappears, her partner Karnak goes looking for her. Karnak’s search leads him into a terrifying world of deception, oppression, and fear at the heart of which lies the prison.

The Famished Road

Azaro, is an abiku, a spirit child, and in the Yoruba tradition of Nigeria exists between life and death.

Prayer for the Living

 It is a collection of twenty-three short stories that blur parallel realities and walk the line between darkness and magic. The stories are set in London, in Byzantium, in the ghetto, in the Andes, and in a printer’s shop in Spain. The characters include a murderer, a writer, a detective, a man in a cave, a man in a mirror, two little boys, a prison door, and the author himself.

George Orwell

Animal Farm

On Mr. Jones’s Manor farm, the animals gather to hear the pig, Old Major’s dream about a world where animals live free from their humans. After Major’s death, two pigs Napoleon and Snowball become the leaders of the animalism movement and plot to overthrow the Jones.


Winston Smith works at rewriting history at the Ministry of Truth. Smith keeps a diary secret from the television cameras all around in order to hold onto some humanity. At the Two Minute Hate, Winston sees a woman, Julia and she sends a note saying I love you. They begin a forbidden relationship and think about the time before Big Brother.

Coming Up for Air

George Bowling has recently won some money in bet. He decides to go back to his home village to go fishing at the local pond. However, once he returns home George finds the town completely changed.

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