That Jennifer Egan's A Visit From the Goon Squad won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction in the year of Jonathan Franzen's heavily-touted Freedom, the book that would save us all (if you believed the media hype), is a testament to the writer's imagination and skill. Goon Squad, in addition to having one of the best titles in recent memory, is a complex novel with multiple narratives that fit together in the style of that puzzle from Hellraiser. Thursday, Egan will sit down with coufounder Laura Miller to pick apart the novel to see just how it works. Think shop class, but with English teachers.

Goon Squad follows Bennie Salazar, music exec and former punk rocker, as he navigates a near-future New York. The novel skips back and forth from the '60s to this imagined future, chronicling Salazar's misadventures, as well as those of his self-destructive friends.

Also, who else thinks Waka should crib the title of Egan's novel for his next album? If not the whole album, at least a track. Waka, please.

Jennifer Egan
Thursday, April 14
7 p.m.
New York Public Library
455 5th Ave, New York
Tickets $25