Judith Claire Mitchell

6195F Helen C. White Hall
(608) 263-3773
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Creative Writing

Judith Claire Mitchell's Website


Degrees and Institutions

M.F.A., The University of Iowa
BA, Barnard College

Recent Books

A Reunion of Ghosts

In the waning days of 1999, the three Alter sisters finalize their plans to end their lives. Their reasons are many, but not entirely theirs alone; all members of the preceding three generations of Alters have opted for what has been called “the consolation of suicide,” beginning with their great-grandmother, the wife of a German-Jewish Nobel Prize-winning chemist who developed the first poison gas used in World War I. The chemist himself, their son Richard, and Richard’s children all followed suit. Now, as the sisters gather in their Upper West Side apartment to give in to the family curse, a story of four generations unfolds. Inspired in part by the troubled life of Fritz Haber, Nobel Prize winner and inventor of chlorine gas, A Reunion of Ghosts is a tale of fate and blood, an examination of sin and absolution, a eulogy of those who have gone before, and above all, a commentary on the events of the 20th century.

Selected Publications and Awards

Judith Claire Mitchell is the author of the novels A Reunion of Ghosts and The Last Day of the War. Her stories and poetry appear in anthologies and literary magazines such as Best of the Fiction Workshops, Shaping the Story, Behind the Short Story, Barnstorming, The Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner, StoryQuarterly, and others. She has received fellowships from the James A. Michener and Copernicus Society of America, the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, and the Wisconsin Arts Board.

Recent Books

  • The Last Day of the War

    Judith Claire Mitchell



    In this story of a Jewish girl and an Armenian-American soldier who enter a maze of underground politics at the conclusion of the First World War, Mitchell captures the atmosphere of political carnival surrounding the Paris Peace Conference, along with the passionate ideals of youth. The Last Day of the War is a love story, but, more than that, it is a tragicomic farce about the workings of history and a testament to the moral fortitude of men and women swept up in the tide of their extraordinary times.