speaker-photo

Toya Wolfe

Last Summer on State Street

Toya Wolfe grew up in the Robert Taylor Homes on Chicago’s South Side. She earned an MFA in creative writing at Columbia College Chicago. Her writing has appeared in African Voices, Chicago Journal, Chicago Reader, Hair Trigger 27, and WarpLand. She has won the Zora Neale Hurston-Bessie Head Fiction Award, the Union League Civic & Arts Foundation Short Story Competition, and others. Last Summer on State Street is her debut novel. She lives in Chicagoland. 

The stunning first novel Last Summer on State Street pulls back the curtain on life inside the projects, portraying with absolute authenticity what it’s like to grow up in a world where gang violence, stray bullets, and predators are a part of one’s social fabric. Yet the story is filled with joy and buoyancy—a beautiful reminder of childhood innocence and the power of community and family. Profound, reverent, and uplifting, this novel explores racist institutions, redlining, and gentrification, showing the power of owning one’s past and the impact of those defining relationships that form the heartbeat of our lives.  

October 23, 1 - 2pm, Sunday

Speaker Schedule

Toya Wolfe

Last Summer on State Street pulls back the curtain on life inside the projects, portraying with absolute authenticity what it’s like to grow up in a world where gang violence, stray bullets, and predators are a part of one’s social fabric. Yet the story is filled with joy and buoyancy—a beautiful reminder of childhood innocence and the power of community and family. Profound, reverent, and uplifting, this novel explores racist institutions, redlining, and gentrification, showing the power of owning one’s past and the impact of those defining relationships that form the heartbeat of our lives.

Ron Robinson Theater, 1-2 p.m.