Melanie McCabe, an English teacher at Yorktown High School and now three-time author, will debut her new work, His Other Life: Searching For My Father, His First Wife, and Tennessee Williams at the Arlington Central Library (1015 N Quincy St., Arlington) on Thursday, Oct. 5. In the auditorium from 7 – 8:30 p.m.
The book centers around the first marriage of McCabe’s father, Terrence, to a woman named Hazel Kramer, whose charm and beauty had struck famous American playwright Tennessee Williams in his youth. Taking on the role of a detective and also a memoirist, McCabe walks readers through her journey trying to fill in the blank spaces of her father’s life before her — one that saw him as an aspiring writer who was infatuated with a woman who eventually suffered a tragic death at 38 years old. She combines the works of Williams’ biographies, her father’s writings and tedious genealogical research to craft a dichotomy that portrays the loving father she knew as well as the debonair writer she didn’t. The book serves as a love story, a mystery and a coming of age tale for McCabe who lost her father as a teenager and got a chance to learn more about him during the writing process.
McCabe has previously written two poetry collections, History of the Body in 2012 and What the Neighbors Know in 2014. His Other Life will be available for purchase following next week’s book launch.