The best books transport us to a different time or place, offering up an escape for a few hundred pages or so. This is true of Colum McCann’s TransAtlantic in more ways than one. The novel takes readers on a 150-year journey that weaves together the separate stories of the first pilots to successfully complete a transatlantic flight, the efforts of a former slave advocating for autonomy in Ireland and a U.S. Senator shepherding the North Ireland peace process on the eve of the Good Friday Agreement. Somehow McCann, a National Book Award winner, makes these seemingly incongruous plot lines make perfect sense–in 304 pages, no less. This is due in no small part to the four generations of Irish women he tasks with relaying his tale to readers. On May 19, a special pre-publication launch is happening at Greenlight Bookstore to celebrate TransAtlantic’s impending paperback release next month. McCann will be on hand to discuss his work with fellow author Phil Klay, starting at 7:30pm. It’s been almost a year since TransAtlantic first appeared in hard cover, so if you need a refresher before Monday’s event, check out Michiko Kakutani’s coverage for the New York Times.