Photo of Justin Torres side by side with the cover of his novel Blackouts

Some Favorite Writers: Justin Torres

  • This is a past program

Justin Torres’ latest book Blackouts received the 2023 National Book Award for fiction and was called a “shimmering, fable-like novel” by the Washington Post. Filled with tales-within-tales, redacted pages, illustrations and photographs, Torres excavates the devastating history of the 1941 report Sex Variants: A Study of Homosexual Patterns, imaginatively exposing stories that had previously been erased.

Readings are followed by discussion with the author and UCLA professor Mona Simpson, who organizes this series. Copresented by the UCLA Department of English.

Limited books will be available for purchase.


Justin Torres is the author of the 2023 National Book Award winning novel Blackouts. His debut novel, We the Animals, won the VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, was translated into fifteen languages, and was adapted into a feature film. He was named a National Book Foundation “5 Under 35,” a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, and a Cullman Center Fellow at the New York Public Library. His short fiction and essays have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s, Granta, Tin House, The Washington Post, LA Times Image Magazine, and Best American Essays. He lives in Los Angeles, and teaches at UCLA.

Mona Simpson is the best-selling author of Anywhere But HereThe Lost FatherA Regular GuyOff Keck RoadMy Hollywood, and CasebookOff Keck Road was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and won the Heartland Prize from the Chicago Tribune. She has received a Whiting Writers’ Award, a Guggenheim fellowship, a Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Writers’ Award, and an award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She is on the faculty at UCLA. In 2020, she was named publisher of The Paris Review.


Ticketing: This free program is not ticketed.
Parking: Valet parking is available on Lindbrook Drive for $15 cash only. Self-parking is available under the museum. Rates are $8 for the first three hours with museum validation, and $3 for each additional 20 minutes, with a $22 daily maximum. There is an $8 flat rate after 5 p.m. on weekdays, and all day on weekends.

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All public programs are free and made possible by a major gift from an anonymous donor.
Generous support is also provided by Susan Bay Nimoy and Leonard Nimoy, the Elizabeth Bixby Janeway Foundation, the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, an anonymous donor, and all Hammer members.
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