Aprilback to top
Downriver: Into the Future of Water in the West
Fights over the Green River’s water–and future–are longstanding, intractable, and only getting worse as the West gets hotter and drier with each passing year. As a former raft guide and an environmental reporter, Heather Hansman knew these fights were happening, but she felt driven to see them from a different perspective—from the river itself. So she set out on a journey, in a one-person inflatable pack raft, to paddle the river from source to confluence and see what the experience might teach her.
Heather Hansman is an award-winning journalist whose work has appeared in Outside, California Sunday, Smithsonian, and many others. After a decade of raft guiding across the United States, she lives in Seattle.
Come join us for Brookline Booksmith’s celebration of the 5th annual Independent Bookstore Day!
We are so excited to celebrate the magic of independent bookstores with our wonderful community, and are planning a fun-filled day of literary costume contests, photo booths, used book fishing, and more! Stay tuned on social media for more Independent Bookstore Day announcements.
Get more information on IBD festivities throughout the greater Boston area HERE!
Sissy: A Coming-of-Gender Story
Naturally sensitive, playful, creative, and glitter-obsessed, as a child Jacob was given the label “sissy.” In the two decades that followed, “sissy” joined forces with “gay,” “trans,” “nonbinary,” and “too-queer-to-function” to become a source of pride and, today, a rallying cry for a much-needed gender revolution. Through revisiting their childhood and calling out the stereotypes that each of us have faced, Jacob invites us to rethink what we know about gender and offers a bold blueprint for a healed world–one free from gender-based trauma and bursting with trans-inclusive feminism.
Jacob Tobia (@JacobTobia) is a gender nonconforming writer, producer, and performer based in Los Angeles. A member of both the Forbes “30 Under 30” and the “OUT 100,” Jacob’s writing and advocacy have been featured by MSNBC, The New York Times, TIME, The Guardian, and Teen Vogue, among others. A Point Foundation Scholar, Truman Scholar, and member of the Biden Foundation’s Advisory Council for Advancing LGBTQ Equality, Jacob has worn high heels in the White House twice.
Mensch-Marks: Life Lessons of a Human Rabbi
The Talmud states, “In a world that lacks humanity, be human.” In a world as untethered as ours has become, simply being human, a good person, is a measure of heroism. At a time when norms of civility are being routinely overwhelmed, it may be the only measure that matters. Mensch-Marks represents Rabbi Joshua Hammerman’s personal Torah scroll–the sacred text of his experiences, the life lessons he has learned along his winding, circuitous journey.
Mirroring 42 steps Israel wandered in the Wilderness, Hammerman offers 42 brief essays, several of which first appeared in The New York Times Magazine, organized into categories of character, or “mensch-marks,” each one a stepping stone toward spiritual maturation. These essays span most of Rabbi Hammerman’s life, revealing how he has striven to be a “mensch,” a human of character, through every challenge.
Mayback to top
Into English: Poems, Translations, Commentaries
What role do translators play in bringing international literature to a US audience? What do they consider aesthetically, politically, when translating a work to English? Four distinguished New England based literary translators discuss their work and their latest translations from the Russian, French, Vietnamese, and Haitian Creole. Co-sponsored by the Boston chapter of the National Writers Union.
Emma Ramadan is a literary translator based in Providence, Rhode Island, where she is the co-owner of Riffraff bookstore and bar. She is the recipient of a PEN/Heim grant, an NEA Translation Fellowship, and a Fulbright Fellowship for her work. Her translations include Anne Garréta’s Sphinx and Not One Day, Virginie Despentes’s Pretty Things, Marcus Malte’s The Boy, and Delphine Minoui’s I’m Writing You From Tehran.
Danielle Legros Georges is a poet, translator, essayist and the author of two books of poetry, Maroon and The Dear Remote Nearness of You, the chapbook Letters from Congo, and is the editor of City of Notions: An Anthology of Contemporary Boston Poems. She served as Boston’s second Poet Laureate from 2015 through 2018, and teaches at Lesley University.
Martha Collins’s tenth book of poetry, Because What Else Could I Do, is forthcoming from Pittsburgh this fall. Other recent books of poems are Night Unto Night (Milkweed, 2018) and Admit One: An American Scrapbook (Pittsburgh, 2016). Collins has also published four volumes of co-translated Vietnamese poetry and co-edited several anthologies, most recently Into English: Poems, Translations, Commentaries, with Kevin Prufer (Graywolf, 2017). Founder of the creative writing program at UMass-Boston, she served as Pauline Delaney Professor of Creative Writing at Oberlin College for ten years. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
J. Kates is a minor poet, a literary translator and the president and co-director of Zephyr Press. He has been awarded three National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, an Individual Artist Fellowship from the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts, the Cliff Becker Book Prize in Translation for the Selected Poems of Mikhail Yeryomin (White Pine Press, 2014) and a Käpylä Translation Prize for translations of Aigerim Tazhi. He has published three chapbooks of his own poems: Mappemonde (Oyster River Press) Metes and Bounds (Accents Publishing) and The Old Testament (Cold Hub Press) and a full book, The Briar Patch (Hobblebush Books). He is the translator of The Score of the Game and An Offshoot of Sense by Tatiana Shcherbina; Say Thank You and Level with Us by Mikhail Aizenberg; When a Poet Sees a Chestnut Tree, Secret Wars, and I Have Invented Nothing by Jean-Pierre Rosnay; Corinthian Copper by Regina Derieva; Live by Fire by Aleksey Porvin; Thirty-nine Rooms, by Nikolai Baitov; Genrikh Sapgir’s Psalms — and Muddy River, a selection of poems by Sergey Stratanovsky. He is the translation editor of Contemporary Russian Poetry, and the editor of In the Grip of Strange Thoughts: Russian Poetry in a New Era. A former president of the American Literary Translators Association, he is also the co-translator of six books of Latin American and Spanish poetry.
Fall and Rise: The Story of 9/11
This is a 9⁄11 book like no other. Masterfully weaving together multiple strands of the events in New York, at the Pentagon, and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, Fall and Rise is a mesmerizing, minute-by-minute account of that terrible day.
Mitchell Zuckoff is the Sumner M. Redstone Professor of Narrative Studies at Boston University. He covered 9⁄11 for the Boston Globe, and wrote the lead news story on the day of the attacks. Zuckoff is the author of seven previous nonfiction books, including the #1 New York Times bestseller “13 Hours,” which became the basis of the Paramount Pictures movie of the same name. As a member of the Boston Globe Spotlight Team, he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in investigative reporting and the winner of numerous national awards. He lives outside Boston with his family.
All Its Charms
When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities
Ghost, Like a Place
Join us for a night of poetry with three wonderful authors!
Keetje Kuipers’ All Its Charms is a fearless and transformative reckoning of identity. By turns tender and raw, these poems chronicle Kuipers’ decision to become a single mother, her marriage to the woman she first fell in love with more than a decade before giving birth to her daughter, and her family’s struggle to bring another child into their lives. All Its Charms is about much more than the reinvention of the American family–it’s about transformation, desire, and who we can become when we move past who we thought we would be.
Chen Chen investigates inherited forms of love and family–the strained relationship between a mother and son, the cost of necessary goodbyes–all from Asian American, immigrant, and queer perspectives in his ferocious and tender debut. Holding all accountable, this collection fully embraces the loss, grief, and abundant joy that come with charting one’s own path in identity, life, and love.
Ian Haley Pollock’s collection highlights the complexities of fatherhood and how to raise young kids while bearing witness to the charged movements of social injustice and inequities of race in America. Memory, culpability, and our very humanness course through this book and strip us down to find joy and inspiration amid the darkness.
From the creators of the New York Times bestseller Dragons Love Tacos comes a rollicking, rhyme-tastic, interactive high five competition–starring YOU!
Discover the lost art of the high five and improve your slapping skills just in time for the annual high five contest! From hand-limbering stretches to lessons on five-ing with finesse, readers are guided through a series of interactive challenges, each goofier than the next.
Adam Rubin is the New York Times best-selling author of a half dozen critically acclaimed picture books, including Dragons Love Tacos, Dragons Love Tacos 2: The Sequel, Secret Pizza Party, and Robo-Sauce. He spent ten years working as a creative director in the advertising industry before leaving his day job to write full-time. Adam has a keen interest in improv comedy, camping, and magic tricks.
False Calm: A Journey Through the Ghost Towns of Patagonia
The Transnational Literature Book Club focuses on books concerned with migration, displacement, and exile, with particular emphasis on works in translation. To contact our moderator, email email@example.com.
Part reportage, part personal essay, part travelogue, False Calm is the breakout work by Argentinian author Mar a Sonia Cristoff. Writing against romantic portrayals of Patagonia, Cristoff returns home to chronicle the ghost towns left behind by the oil boom. In prose that showcases her sharp powers of observation, Cristoff explores Patagonia’s complicated legacy through the lost stories of its people and the desolate places they inhabit.
Every Tool's a Hammer: Life Is What You Make It
MythBusters’ Adam Savage—author, Discovery Channel star and one of the most beloved figures in science and tech—celebrates the release of Every Tool’s a Hammer: Life Is What You Make It. Attendees will receive a FREE autographed copy of Savage’s new book.
Adam Savage is a maker. From Chewbacca’s bandolier to a thousand-shot Nerf gun, he has built thousands of spectacular projects as a special effects artist and the co-host of MythBusters. He is also an educator, passionate about instilling the principles of making in the next generation of inventors and inspiring them to turn their curiosity into creation.»
No Walls and the Recurring Dream
THIS EVENT IS SOLD OUT. There will be a standby line at Coolidge Corner Theatre on the evening of the event.
This event will be in conversation with WBUR’s Robin Young.
Join Brookline Booksmith and Ani DiFranco as we celebrate the release of Ani’s memoir No Walls and the Recurring Dream. This event will take place at Coolidge Corner Theatre. Every ticket comes with a signed copy of the book.
No Walls and the Recurring Dream recounts Ani DiFranco’s early life from a place of hard-won wisdom, combining personal expression, the power of music, feminism, political activism, storytelling, philanthropy, entrepreneurship, and much more into an inspiring whole.»
Riding the Elephant: A Memoir of Altercations, Humiliations, Hallucinations, and Observations
Craig Ferguson has defied the odds his entire life. He has failed when he should have succeeded and succeeded when he should have failed. The fact that he is neither dead nor in a locked facility (at the time of printing) is something of a miracle in itself. In Craig’s candid and revealing memoir, readers will get a look into the mind and recollections of the unique and twisted Scottish American who became a national hero for pioneering the world’s first TV robot skeleton sidekick and reviving two dudes in a horse suit dancing as a form of entertainment.
Craig Ferguson has worked as a drummer, a bartender, a stand-up comedian, a producer and an actor. He is the author of a bunch of screenplays, a few of which have actually been made into talking pictures. He wrote the novel Between the Bridge and the River and the memoir American on Purpose and with his friends Geoff, a sassy robot, and Secretariat, a comedy horse, he hosted a late night talk show on American television for ten years. He lives in Scotland.
Autumn Light: Season of Fire and Farewells
From one of our most astute observers of human nature, a far-reaching exploration of Japanese history and culture and a moving meditation on impermanence, mortality, and grief. Iyer leads us through the year following his father-in-law’s death, and as the maple leaves begin to redden and the heat begins to soften, Iyer offers us a singular view of Japan, in the season that reminds us to take nothing for granted.
Pico Iyer is the author of eight works of nonfiction and two novels. A writer for Time since 1982, he is a frequent contributor to The New York Times, Harper’s, The New York Review of Books, the Los Angeles Times, the Financial Times, and many other magazines and newspapers on both sides of the Atlantic and Pacific. He splits his time between Nara, Japan, and the United States.
Go Went Gone
Discussing Go, Went, Gone by Jenny Erpenbeck.
The Brookline Booksmith Book Club meets downstairs at 7:30pm. To contact our moderator, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Go, Went, Gone is the masterful new novel by the acclaimed German writer Jenny Erpenbeck, “one of the most significant German-language novelists of her generation” (The Millions). The novel tells the tale of Richard, a retired classics professor who lives in Berlin. His wife has died, and he lives a routine existence until one day he spies some African refugees staging a hunger strike in Alexanderplatz. Curiosity turns to compassion and an inner transformation, as he visits their shelter, interviews them, and becomes embroiled in their harrowing fates. Go, Went, Gone is a scathing indictment of Western policy toward the European refugee crisis, but also a touching portrait of a man who finds he has more in common with the Africans than he realizes. Exquisitely translated by Susan Bernofsky, Go, Went, Gone addresses one of the most pivotal issues of our time, facing it head-on in a voice that is both nostalgic and frightening.
From the acclaimed author of My Cat Yugoslavia: a stunning, incandescent new novel that speaks to identity, war, exile, love, betrayal, and heartbreak.
The death of head of state Enver Hoxha and the loss of his father leave Bujar growing up in the ruins of Communist Albania and of his own family. Only his fearless best friend, Agim—who is facing his own realizations about his gender and sexuality—gives him hope for the future. Together the two decide to leave everything behind and try their luck in Italy. But the struggle to feel at home—in a foreign country and even in one’s own body—will have corrosive effects, spurring a dangerous search for new identities.
Steeped in a rich heritage of bewitching Albanian myth and legend, this is a deeply timely and deeply necessary novel about the broken reality for millions worldwide, about identity in all its complex permutations, and the human need to be seen.
Pajtim Statovci was born in Kosovo in 1990 and moved with his family to Finland when he was two years old. He is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Helsinki. His first book, My Cat Yugoslavia, won the Helsingin Sanomat Literature Prize for best debut novel and his second, Crossing, won the Toisinkoinen Literature Price. He received the 2018 Helsinki Writer of the Year Award.
Ani Gjika is an Albanian-born poet, literary translator, writer, and author of Bread on Running Waters (Fenway Press, 2013), a finalist for the 2011 Anthony Hecht Poetry Prize and 2011 May Sarton New Hampshire Book Prize. Gjika moved to the US at age 18 and earned an MA in English at Simmons College and an MFA in poetry at Boston University. Her translation from the Albanian of Luljeta Lleshanaku’s Negative Space was published by New Directions in the US. Gjika’s honors include awards and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, English PEN, the Robert Pinsky Global Fellowship, Framingham State University’s Miriam Levine Reader Award, and the Robert Fitzgerald Translation Prize. Her translations from the Albanian appear in World Literature Today, Ploughshares, AGNI Online, Catamaran Literary Reader, Two Lines Online, From the Fishouse, and elsewhere.
Comedy Sex God
THIS EVENT IS SOLD OUT.
This ticketed event will take place at WBUR CitySpace at 890 Commonwealth Avenue.
Part autobiography, part philosophical inquiry, and part spiritual quest, Comedy Sex God is a hilarious, profound, and enlightening romp around the fertile mind of stand-up stand-out, podcast king, and HBO superstar Pete Holmes.
Pete Holmes is a comedian, writer, cartoonist, “Christ-leaning spiritual seeker”, and podcast host. His wildly popular podcast, You Made It Weird, is a comedic exploration of the meaning of life with guests ranging from Deepak Chopra and Elizabeth Gilbert to Seth Rogen and Garry Shandling. Pete also created and stars in the semi-autobiographical HBO show Crashing which he executive produces alongside Judd Apatow. An accomplished standup with three hour-long television specials and innumerable late night appearances, he continues to tour regularly to sold-out crowds.
Discussing Dog Symphony by Sam Munson.
Boris Leonidovich, a North American professor who specializes in the history of prison architecture, has been invited to Buenos Aires for an academic conference. He’s planning to present a paper on Moscow’s feared Butyrka prison, but most of all he’s looking forward to seeing his enigmatic, fiercely intelligent colleague (and sometime lover) Ana again. As soon as Boris arrives, however, he encounters obstacle after unlikely obstacle: he can’t get in touch with Ana, he locks himself out of his rented room, and he discovers dog-feeding stations and water bowls set before every house and business. With night approaching, he finds himself lost and alone in a foreign city filled with stray dogs, all flowing with sinister, bewildering purpose though the darkness…
Shadowed with foreboding, and yet alive with the comical mischief of C sar Aira and the nimble touch of a great stylist, Dog Symphony is an un-nerving and propulsive novel by a talented new American voice.
Truth Worth Telling: A Reporter's Search for Meaning in the Stories of Our Times
A 60 Minutes correspondent and former anchor of the CBS Evening News, Scott Pelley writes as a witness to events that changed our world. In moving, detailed prose, he stands with firefighters at the collapsing World Trade Center on 9⁄11, advances with American troops in combat in Afghanistan and Iraq, and reveals private moments with presidents (and would-be presidents) he’s known for decades. Pelley also offers a resounding defense of free speech and a free press as the rights that guarantee all others. Above all, Truth Worth Telling offers a collection of inspiring tales that reminds us of the importance of values in uncertain times. For readers who believe that values matter and that truth is worth telling, Pelley writes, “I have written this book for you.
In this provocative, wildly entertaining, and compelling novel, seven women enrolled in an extreme weight loss documentary discover self-love and sisterhood as they enact a daring revenge against the exploitative filmmakers.
Randy Susan Meyers is the bestselling author of Accidents of Marriage, The Comfort of Lies, The Murderer’s Daughters, and The Widow of Wall Street. Her books have twice been finalists for the Mass Book Award and named “Must Read Books” by the Massachusetts Center for the Book. She lives with her husband in Boston, where she teaches writing at the Grub Street Writers’ Center.»
The Body Papers
The Transnational Literature Series Presents Immigrant Prize Winner Grace Talusan.
The Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing began in 2016 as a response to rising xenophobic trends. The Prize celebrates immigrants’ contributions to culture by awarding $10,000 and publication to a debut work by a first-generation immigrant, alternating yearly between fiction and nonfiction. Join the first nonfiction winner of the Immigrant Writing Prize, Grace Talusan, with both Prize judges, Anjali Singh and Ilan Stavans, as they discuss Grace’s brave and searching memoir, The Body Papers, on May 23rd as part of Brookline Booksmith’s Transnational Literature Series.
Grace Talusan was born in the Philippines and raised in New England. A graduate of Tufts University and the MFA Program in Writing at UC Irvine, she is the recipient of a U.S. Fulbright Fellowship to the Philippines and an Artist Fellowship Award from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Talusan teaches the Essay Incubator at GrubStreet and at the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts. She is the Fannie Hurst Writer-in-Residence at Brandeis University for 2019-2021. The Body Papers, winner of the Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing, is her first book.
The Body Papers begins when a young Grace Talusan arrives in a New England suburb in the 1970s. At school, she confronts racism as one of the few kids with a brown face. At home, the confusion is worse: her grandfather’s nightly visits to her room leave her hurt and terrified, and she learns to build a protective wall of silence that maps onto the larger silence practiced by her Catholic Filipino family. Talusan learns as a teenager that her family’s legal status in the country has always hung by a thread—for a time, they were “illegal.” Family, she’s told, must be put first.
The abuse and trauma Talusan suffers as a child affects all her relationships, her mental health, and her relationship with her own body. Later, she learns that her family history is threaded with violence and abuse. And she discovers another devastating family thread: cancer. In her thirties, Talusan must decide whether to undergo preventive surgeries to remove her breasts and ovaries. Despite all this, she finds love, and success as a teacher. On a fellowship, Talusan and her husband return to the Philippines, where she revisits her family’s ancestral home and tries to reclaim a lost piece of herself.
Not every family legacy is destructive. From her parents, Talusan has learned to tell stories in order to continue. The generosity of spirit and literary acuity of this debut memoir are a testament to her determination and resilience. In excavating such abuse and trauma, and supplementing her story with government documents, medical records, and family photos, Talusan gives voice to unspeakable experience, and shines a light of hope into the darkness.
Grace will be in conversation with Anjali Singh and Ilan Stavans, judges for the Restless Books Immigrant Prize in Nonfiction.
Anjali Singh started her career in publishing in 1996 as a literary scout. Most recently Editorial Director at Other Press, she has also worked as an editor at Simon & Schuster, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Vintage Books. She is best known for having championed Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis after stumbling across it on a visit to Paris. She has always been drawn to the thrill of discovering new writers, and among the literary novelists whose careers she helped launch are Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Samantha Hunt, and Saleem Haddad. Some of her editorial non-fiction projects include Baz Dreisinger’s Incarceration Nations, Diana Abu-Jaber’s The Language of Baklava, Kathy Rich’s Dreaming in Hindi, Minal Hajratwala’s Leaving India, Nuha al-Radi’s Baghdad Diaries, and Igort’s The Ukrainian and Russian Notebooks. She is currenly a literary agent at Ayesha Pande Literary, where she recently sold the YA graphic novel, Jabs by Sherine Hamdy and Myra El-Mir, the coming-of-age story of a Muslim-American girl, to Dial Books for Young Readers. She is a member of the International Committee of the Brooklyn Book Festival.
Ilan Stavans is the Publisher of Restless Books and the Lewis-Sebring Professor of Humanities, Latin American and Latino Culture at Amherst College. His books include On Borrowed Words, Spanglish, Dictionary Days, The Disappearance, and A Critic’s Journey. He has edited The Norton Anthology of Latino Literature, the three-volume set Isaac Bashevis Singer: Collected Stories, The Poetry of Pablo Neruda, among dozens of other volumes. He is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, Chile’s Presidential Medal, the International Latino Book Award, and the Jewish Book Award. Stavans’s work, translated into twenty languages, has been adapted to the stage and screen. A cofounder of the Great Books Summer Program at Amherst, Stanford, Chicago, Oxford, and Dublin, he is the host of the NPR podcast “In Contrast.”
Bitcoin Billionaires: A True Story of Genius, Betrayal, and Redemption
From Ben Mezrich, the New York Times bestselling author of The Accidental Billionaires and Bringing Down the House, comes Bitcoin Billionaires–the fascinating story of brothers Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss’s big bet on crypto-currency and its dazzling pay-off. From the Silk Road to the halls of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Bitcoin Billionaires will take us on a wild and surprising ride while illuminating a tantalizing economic future.
Ben Mezrich has authored Bringing Down the House, which spent sixty-three weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. His book The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook, a Tale of Sex, Money, Genius and Betrayal debuted at #4 on the New York Times list and hit bestseller lists in over a dozen countries. The book was adapted into the movie The Social Network, nominated for eight Academy Awards and winner of four Golden Globes including Best Motion Picture.
Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic
A New York Times bestselling author shares this exhilarating story of cutting-edge science and the race against the clock to find new treatments in the fight against the antibiotic-resistant bacteria known as superbugs.
Physician, researcher, and ethics professor Matt McCarthy is on the front lines of a groundbreaking clinical trial testing a new antibiotic to fight lethal superbugs, bacteria that have built up resistance to the life-saving drugs in our rapidly dwindling arsenal. This trial serves as the backdrop for the compulsively readable Superbugs, and the results will impact nothing less than the future of humanity.
MATT MCCARTHY is the author of two national bestsellers, The Real Doctor Will See You Shortly and Odd Man Out. He is an assistant professor of medicine at Weill Cornell and a staff physician at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, where he serves on the Ethics Committee. His work has appeared in Sports Illustrated, Slate, The New England Journal of Medicine, and Deadspin. He reviews nonfiction for USA Today and is editor-in-chief of Current Fungal Infection Reports.
Samantha–the fashionable wife of a successful businessman and doting mother of one–struggles to negotiate the spheres of intimacy between her husband and her family of origin. Samantha loves her husband, Richard, and she loves her sister, Elizabeth. But the two of them can barely exist in the same room, which has caused the entire family years of emotional distress. Yet it’s not until Samantha’s sister is diagnosed at age forty-three with lung cancer that her family and her marriage are tipped into full-blown crisis.
Sondra Helene is a board member and writer at GrubStreet, Boston’s center for literary life. Her publications include “Jewish Magic Protected My Sister” in Lilith Magazine, “The Switch” in Voices of Caregiving: Stories of Courage, Comfort and Strength; and “Losing My Sister and the Long Road Back” on better50.com. She has studied fiction and nonfiction at GrubStreet, the Fine Arts Work Center, Gotham Writers Workshop, the Sirenland Writers Conference, and Kripalu.
Into the Jungle
In this pulse-pounding thriller from the author of the “haunting, twisting thrill ride” (Megan Miranda, New York Times bestselling author) The River at Night, a young woman leaves behind everything she knows to take on the Bolivian jungle, but her excursion abroad quickly turns into a fight for her life.
Erica Ferencik is a graduate of the MFA program in Creative Writing at Boston University. Her work has appeared in Salon and The Boston Globe, as well as on National Public Radio. Find out more on her website EricaFerencik.com and follow her on Twitter @EricaFerencik.
This event was originally scheduled for May 22.
Juneback to top
A Piglet Named Mercy
Every porcine wonder was once a piglet! Celebrate the joy of a new arrival with this endearing picture-book prequel to the New York Times best-selling Mercy Watson series.
Mr. Watson and Mrs. Watson live ordinary lives. Sometimes their lives feel a bit too ordinary. Sometimes they wish something different would happen. And one day it does, when someone unpredictable finds her way to their front door. In a delightful origin story for the star of the Mercy Watson series, a tiny piglet brings love (and chaos) to Deckawoo Drive — and the Watsons’ lives will never be the same.
Chris Van Dusen is the author-illustrator of many books for young readers, including The Circus Ship and Hattie & Hudson, and the illustrator of the Mercy Watson and Deckawoo Drive series. He lives in Maine.
Strangers and Cousins
In the seemingly idyllic town of Rundle Junction, Bennie and Walter are preparing to host the wedding of their eldest daughter Clem. A marriage ceremony at their beloved, rambling home should be the happiest of occasions, but Walter and Bennie have a secret. A new community has moved to Rundle Junction, threatening the social order and forcing Bennie and Walter to confront uncomfortable truths about the lengths they would go to to maintain harmony.
Leah Hager Cohen is the author of five works of nonfiction, including Train Go Sorry, and five novels, including The Grief of Others, which was longlisted for the Orange Prize and the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and was a finalist for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. She is the Barrett Professor of Creative Writing at the College of the Holy Cross.
If I Had Two Lives
This luminous debut novel follows a young woman from her childhood in Vietnam to her life as an immigrant in the United States - and her necessary return to her homeland.
As a child, isolated from the world in a secretive military encampment with her distant mother, she turns for affection to a sympathetic soldier and to the only other girl in the camp, forming two friendships that will shape the rest of her life.
As a young adult in New York, cut off from her native country and haunted by the scars of her youth, she is still in search of a home. She falls in love with a married woman who is the image of her childhood friend, and follows strangers because they remind her of her soldier. When tragedy arises, she must return to Vietnam to confront the memories of her youth - and recover her identity.
Abbigail N. Rosewood was born in Vietnam, where she lived until the age of twelve. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Columbia University. An excerpt from her first novel won first place in the Writers Workshop of Asheville Literary Fiction Contest. She lives in New York.
Mira T. Lee’s debut novel, Everything Here is Beautiful, was selected as a Top 10 Debut and Indie Next Pick by the American Booksellers Association, and named a Best Fiction title of 2018 by Amazon, O Magazine, Real Simple, and the Goodreads Readers Choice Awards. It was also named a top Winter Pick by more than 30 news outlets, including The Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, Poets & Writers, New York magazine, and Buzzfeed, among others. Mira’s short fiction has appeared in journals such as the Southern Review, the Missouri Review, and Harvard Review, and has twice received special mention for the Pushcart Prize. She has also been the recipient of an Artist’s Fellowship from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.
Mar Ka lives in and writes from the foothills of Alaska’s Chugach Mountains. Be-Hooved, her new poetry collection, creates a layered spiritual memoir of her decades in the northern wilderness. The poems inhabit her surroundings—structured along the seasons and the migration patterns of the Porcupine Caribou Herd—and are wrought with a fine and luminous language.
Mar Ka is an indigenous rights attorney in the foothills of Alaska’s Chugach Mountains. She is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Humanities grant and the Midnight Sun Poetry Prize. Her poems have been published in national and international journals and anthologies.
More News Tomorrow
On her 70th birthday Georgianna Grove receives an unexpected letter that calls her back to Wisconsin, where her mother was murdered 66 years earlier. Georgie’s father had confessed and was carted off to a state penitentiary. Haunted by the night that took both her parents away and determined to unearth the truth, Georgie takes her reluctant family on what will become a dangerous canoe trip up the swollen Bone River.
Acclaimed novelist Susan Richards Shreve, celebrated for her “refined explorations of parent-child relationships” (Washington Post), captures the tenor of the times with clarity and elegance as she follows both Georgie and her parents on parallel trips up the Bone River, weaving together the hope of June 2008 with the injustices of June 1941. Georgie must untangle a web of bigotry, loss, and half-forgotten memories to finally understand her parents’ fate.
The Rosie Result
Don Tillman and Rosie Jarman are about to face their most important challenge. Their eleven-year-old son, Hudson, is struggling at school: he’s socially awkward and not fitting in. Don’s spent a lifetime trying to fit in - so who better to teach Hudson the skills he needs?
Hilarious and thought-provoking, with a brilliant cast of characters, The Rosie Result is the triumphant final installment of the internationally bestselling Don Tillman trilogy.
Graeme Simsion is an Australian novelist and screenwriter. His novel The Rosie Project and its sequel, The Rosie Effect, have sold millions of copies worldwide. Graeme’s screenplay for The Rosie Project is in development with Sony Pictures and The Best of Adam Sharp is in development with Toni Collette’s Vocab Films.
John Elder Robison is the New York Times bestselling author of Look Me in the Eye, Be Different and Raising Cubby. He lectures widely on autism and neurological differences, and is a member of the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee of the US Dept. of Health and Human Services. John also serves on committees and review boards for the CDC and the National Institutes of Health.
Now? Not Yet!
Peanut and Moe are back, this time on a camping trip. Peanut wants to swim NOW, Moe says NOT YET! A sweet and cheerful book about overcoming differences.
Once upon a time, Gina Perry picked wild blueberries, floated on lakes in her inner tube and was always on the lookout for a real moose in the woods. Now she writes and illustrates books for young readers from her New Hampshire home, where she lives with THREE monsters: her husband and two kids. She is still on the lookout for moose.
Our Non-Christian Nation: How Atheists, Satanists, Pagans, and Others Are Demanding Their Rightful Place in Public Life
In Our Non-Christian Nation, Jay Wexler travels the country to engage the non-Christians who have called on us to maintain our ideals of inclusivity and diversity. As Wexler reminds us, anyone who cares about pluralism, equality, and fairness should support a public square filled with a variety of religious and nonreligious voices. The stakes are nothing short of long-term social peace.
A Professor at Boston University School of Law, Jay Wexler is also a humorist, short story writer, and novelist. A one-time clerk to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and former lawyer at the US Department of Justice, he has written for National Geographic, The Boston Globe, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Salon, and many other outlets. His books include When God Isn’t Green (2016) and Holy Hullabaloos.
More Than Enough: Claiming Space for Who You Are (No Matter What They Say)
Throughout her life, Elaine Welteroth has climbed the ranks of media and fashion, shattering ceilings along the way. In this riveting and timely memoir, the groundbreaking journalist unpacks lessons on race, identity, and success through her own journey, from navigating her way as the unstoppable child of a unlikely interracial marriage in small-town California to finding herself on the frontlines of a modern movement for the next generation of change makers.
Elaine Welteroth is an award-winning journalist, author, and judge on the new Project Runway. She was most recently editor-in-chief of Teen Vogue where she in 2017 became the youngest person ever appointed editor-in-chief and in 2012 had been the first African American ever to hold the post of beauty and health director at a Condé Nast publication. Prior to Teen Vogue, she was the senior beauty editor at Glamour and the beauty and style editor at Ebony. She has written for the hit show Grown-ish and has appeared on-camera for a range of media outlets including ABC News and Netflix.
Fall; or, Dodge in Hell
Meet Neal Stephenson and celebrate the publication of his newest book, FALL; OR, DODGE IN HELL. This event will be comprised of a reading and Q&A, followed by a signing. A ticket is required for attendance, and includes a copy of the book.
One beautiful autumn day, while Richard “Dodge” Forthrast undergoes a routine medical procedure, something goes irrevocably wrong. Dodge is pronounced brain dead and put on life support. Dodge’s family has his brain scanned and its data structures uploaded and stored in the cloud, until it can eventually be revived. In the coming years, technology allows Dodge’s brain to be turned back on. An eternal afterlife—the Bitworld—is created, in which humans continue to exist as digital souls. But this brave new immortal world is not the Utopia it might first seem …»
Struggling with Serendipity
After an accident, a shy but determined teenager fights the harsh physical challenges of quadriplegia while a heartsick mom battles depression and guilt. Fourteen-year-old Beth believes everything will be okay. Cindy is certain that nothing will ever be okay again.
Struggling with Serendipity explores the power of hope while navigating unknown waters of disability. Beth sets extraordinary goals as she tries to swim with legs that don’t work and hands that can’t cup the water, while Cindy confronts her altered identity and mental health. Together they find a new normal, with serendipity in the most unlikely of moments.
The Summer Demands
On the verge of her 40th birthday and shaken by a recent miscarriage, Emily inherits an abandoned summer camp in Massachusetts. She and her husband move onto the property and make grand plans to revitalize the land, but they soon discover that their inheritance includes an unexpected guest. On a walk through the old campgrounds she once frequented as a girl, Emily finds, living undetected in one of the cabins, a magnetic 22-year-old named Stella. Taking place over a single summer in a landscape that refuses to be tamed, The Summer Demands is a beautiful, quietly startling exploration of the sting of seduction, of unspoken female rage, and of how desire and ambition shift over time.
Deborah Shapiro was born and raised outside of Boston, Massachusetts. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times Book Review, Los Angeles Review of Books, Sight Unseen, Tin House, and elsewhere. Her first novel, The Sun in Your Eyes, was selected as an Editors’ Choice by The New York Times Book Review, as well as one of the season’s best reads by Harper’s Bazaar, The Wall Street Journal Magazine, Chicago Tribune, and Vulture, among other publications. She lives with her husband and son in Chicago.
Today, in an instant, leaders can find themselves face-to-face with crisis. An active shooter. A media controversy. A data breach. In You’re It, the faculty of the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative at Harvard University takes you to the front lines of some of the toughest decisions facing our nation’s leaders-from how to mobilize during a hurricane or in the aftermath of a bombing to halting a raging pandemic. They also take readers through the tough decision-making inside the world’s largest companies, hottest startups, and leading nonprofits.
Leonard J. Marcus, Ph.D. is the founding co-director of the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative at Harvard and an internationally recognized authority on leadership during times of crisis and change.
Eric J. McNulty, M.A. is Associate Director of the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative and an Instructor at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He is a contributing editor and columnist at strategy+business magazine and writes periodically for Harvard Business Review and others.
The Vegetarian meets Heathers in Mona Awad’s Bunny, a darkly funny, seductively strange novel about a lonely graduate student drawn into a clique of rich girls who seem to move and speak as one.
Christopher Castellani’s Leading Men is a glittering novel of desire and ambition set against the glamorous literary circles of 1950s Italy, illuminating one of the great love stories of the twentieth century - Tennessee Williams and his longtime partner Frank Merlo.
Mona Awad is the author of 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl, a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize that won the Colorado Book Award, the Amazon Canada First Novel Award, and an Honorable Mention from the Arab American Book Awards. The recipient of an MFA in Fiction from Brown University and a Ph.D. in English and Creative Writing from the University of Denver, she has published work in Time, VICE, Electric Literature, McSweeney’s, Los Angeles Review of Books, and elsewhere.
Christopher Castellani is the author of three previous novels (the trilogy A Kiss from Maddalena, The Saint of Lost Things, and All This Talk of Love) and The Art of Perspective, a book of essays on the craft of fiction. He is the son of Italian immigrants, a Guggenheim fellow, and the artistic director of GrubStreet, one of the country’s leading creative writing centers. He lives in Boston.
Julyback to top
Cedric's Truth: The Kids on Sturtevant Street
“As an artist….you must resist.”
Cedric Cedric is a “ musician super hero” who fights for the arts and eschews industry and creative restriction seen in corporate culture. He too represents like Ellison’s Invisible Man, a counter- cultural cultural critic. He often “leaves the room” and travels away again before his cousin and Mrs. Turner can find him. In the opening of the book, and all throughout he’s telling this story to his lady friend in a restaurant. The whole novel is him retelling his life to her.
Growing Things and Other Stories
From global catastrophe to the demons inside our heads, Paul Tremblay illuminates our primal fears and darkest dreams in startlingly original fiction that leaves us unmoored. As he lowers the sky and yanks the ground from beneath our feet, we are compelled to contemplate the darkness inside our own hearts and minds.
Paul Tremblay has won the Bram Stoker, British Fantasy, and Massachusetts Book awards and is the author of The Cabin at the End of the World, Disappearance at Devil’s Rock, A Head Full of Ghosts, and the crime novels The Little Sleep and No Sleep Till Wonderland. He is currently a member of the board of directors of the Shirley Jackson Awards, and his essays and short fiction have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Entertainment Weekly online, and numerous year’s-best anthologies. He has a master’s degree in mathematics and lives outside Boston with his family.
Hope Rides Again: An Obama Biden Mystery
In the sequel to the New York Times best-selling novel Hope Never Dies, Obama and Biden reprise their roles as BFFs-turned-detectives as they chase Obama’s stolen cell phone through the streets of Chicago–and right into a vast conspiracy. Set against the backdrop of a raucous city on St. Patrick’s Day, Joe and Obama race to find the shooter, only to uncover a vast conspiracy that goes deeper than the waters of Lake Michigan—which is exactly where they’ll spend the rest of their retirement if they’re not careful.
Andrew Shaffer is the New York Times best-selling author of more than a dozen books, including the national best seller Hope Never Dies: An Obama Biden Mystery. He lives with his wife, the novelist Tiffany Reisz, in Kentucky.
Augustback to top
Calling a Wolf a Wolf
Join us for an evening of poetry with Ilya Kaminsky and Kaveh Akbar.
At once a love story, an elegy, and an urgent plea—Ilya Kaminsky’s long-awaited _Deaf Republic _confronts our time’s vicious atrocities and our collective silence in the face of them. Deaf Republic opens in an occupied country in a time of political unrest. When soldiers breaking up a protest kill a deaf boy, Petya, the gunshot becomes the last thing the citizens hear—all have gone deaf, and their dissent becomes coordinated by sign language. The story follows the private lives of townspeople encircled by public violence: a newly married couple, Alfonso and Sonya, expecting a child; the brash Momma Galya, instigating the insurgency from her puppet theater; and Galya’s girls, heroically teaching signs by day and by night luring soldiers one by one to their deaths behind the curtain. “Evident throughout Deaf Republic is a profound imagination, matched only by the poet’s ability to create a republic of conscience that is ultimately ours, too, and utterly his own—a map of what it means to live ‘in a peaceful country.’”—Kevin Young, The New Yorker
Ilya Kaminsky was born in Odessa, former Soviet Union in 1977, and arrived to the United States in 1993, when his family was granted asylum by the American government. He is the author of two works of poetry, and has co-edited and co-translated many other books, including Ecco Anthology of International Poetry (Harper Collins) and Dark Elderberry Branch: Poems of Marina Tsvetaeva (Alice James Books). His awards include the Guggenheim Fellowship, the Whiting Writer’s Award, the American Academy of Arts and Letters’ Metcalf Award, Lannan Foundation’s Fellowship and the NEA Fellowship. His poems have been translated over twenty languages, and his books have been published in many countries including Turkey, Holland, Russia, France, Mexico, Macedonia, Romania, Spain and China, where his poetry was awarded the Yinchuan International Poetry Prize.
Calling a Wolf a Wolf, Kaveh Akbar’s highly-anticipated debut, boldly confronts addiction and courses the strenuous path of recovery, beginning in the wilds of the mind. Poems confront craving, control, the constant battle of alcoholism and sobriety, and the questioning of the self and its instincts within the context of this never-ending fight. “John Berryman and James Wright (and his son Franz Wright) haunt Calling a Wolf a Wolf, but Akbar also has a voice so distinctly his―tinted in old Persian, dipped in modern American, ancient and millennial, addict and ascetic, animal and more animal. In the end, nothing brings man―human or man―down to Earth more than the kingdom of flora and fauna.”―Porochista Khakpour, Virginia Quarterly Review.
Kaveh Akbar’s poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, The New York Times, Paris Review, The Nation, Best American Poetry, The New Republic, The Guardian, American Poetry Review, The Poetry Review, PBS NewsHour, and elsewhere. The recipient of honors including a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation, a Pushcart Prize, the Levis Reading Prize, and a Lucille Medwick Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, Kaveh was born in Tehran, Iran, and teaches at Purdue University and in the low residency MFA programs at Randolph College and Warren Wilson.
Sea People: The Puzzle of Polynesia
A compulsive debut of literary suspense, Miciah Bay Gault’s Goodnight Stranger follows one young woman caught in the tragedy of her past when she meets a stranger who challenges long-held beliefs about her family.
Sea People: The Puzzle of Polynesia
A blend of Jared Diamond’s Guns, Germs, and Steel and Simon Winchester’s Pacific, a thrilling intellectual detective story by Christina Thompson that looks deep into the past to uncover who first settled the islands of the remote Pacific, where they came from, how they got there, and how we know.
Careful What You Wish For
Emily Harlow makes a living decluttering peoples’ lives, but she’d love nothing better than to toss out all her husband’s crap. The larger his “collection” becomes, the deeper the distance grows between the couple. Luckily Emily’s got new clients to distract herself: an elderly widow whose husband left behind a mysterious storage unit, and a young wife whose husband won’t allow her possessions into their house. Emily’s meeting with the young wife takes a detour when, after too much wine, the two fantasize about life without their hoarder-spouses. But the next day Emily finds herself in a mess that might be too big for her to clean up.
Hallie Ephron is the New York Times bestselling author of Never Tell a Lie, Come and Find Me, There Was an Old Woman, and Night Night, Sleep Tight. For twelve years she was the crime fiction reviewer for the Boston Globe. The daughter of Hollywood screenwriters, she grew up in Beverly Hills, and lives near Boston, Massachusetts.
The Murder List
Law student Rachel North will tell you, without hesitation, what she knows to be true. She’s smart, she’s a hard worker, she does the right thing, she’s successfully married to a faithful and devoted husband, a lion of Boston’s defense bar, and her internship with the Boston DA’s office is her ticket to a successful future.
Problem is–she’s wrong.
And in this cat and mouse game, the battle for justice becomes a battle for survival.
Hank Phillippi Ryan has won five Agatha Awards, in addition to the Anthony, Macavity, Daphne du Maurier, and Mary Higgins Clark Award for her bestselling mystery novels. As an investigative reporter, her work has resulted in new laws, criminals sent to prison, homes saved from foreclosure, and millions of dollars in restitution for victims and consumers. Along with her 34 Emmys and 14 Edward R. Murrow awards, Hank has received dozens of other honors for her ground-breaking journalism.
Septemberback to top
The Missing Ones
Hester Thursby has given up using her research skills to trace people who don’t want to be found. A traumatic case a few months ago unearthed a string of violent crimes, and left Hester riddled with self-doubt and guilt. Caring for a four-year-old is responsibility enough in a world filled with terrors Hester never could have imagined before.
This follow-up to Edwin Hill’s debut Little Comfort is an intimate, intricate mystery as smart and complex as it is riveting.
Edwin Hill lives in Boston with his partner, Michael, and his favorite reviewer, their dog Edith Ann, who likes his first drafts enough to eat them. Visit him on the web at edwin-hill.com.
The Deep History of Ourselves: The Four-Billion-Year Story of How We Got Conscious Brains
Renowned neuroscientist Joseph LeDoux digs into the natural history of life on earth to provide a new perspective on the similarities between us and our ancestors in deep time. This page-turning survey of the whole of terrestrial evolution sheds new light on how nervous systems evolved in animals, how the brain developed, and what it means to be human.
Joseph LeDoux is the Henry and Lucy Moses Professor of Science at New York University, where he is a member of the Center for Neural Science and Department of Psychology. He directs the Emotional Brain Institute at New York University and at the Nathan Kline Institute, and is the author of the books Anxious, Synaptic Self, and The Emotional Brain
Octoberback to top
Driving in Cars with Homeless Men
Driving in Cars with Homeless Men is a love letter to women moving through violence. These linked stories are set in the streets and the bars, the old homes, the tiny apartments, and the landscape of a working-class Boston.
Serena, Frankie, Raffa, and Nat collide and break apart like pool balls to come back together in an imagined post-divorce future. Homeless Men is the collective story of women whose lives careen back into the past, to the places where pain lurks and haunts. With riotous energy and rage, they run towards the future in the hopes of untangling themselves from failure to succeed and fail again.
Kate Wisel is a native of Boston. Her fiction, nonfiction, and poetry has appeared, or is forthcoming, in publications that include Gulf Coast, New Ohio Review, Tin House online, Redivider as winner of the Beacon Street prize, and on the Boston subway as winner of the “Poetry on the T” contest. She currently lives in Madison, where she is a fiction fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.