Boston Public Library author talks feature a wide range of talented writers. Hear authors read from their books, purchase a copy, get it signed, and learn about the creative process that gets such magnificent stories told. To look for even more author talks taking place Boston Public Library locations, please use our calendar of events.
Ted Reinstein has been a reporter and producer for WCVB-TV Channel 5’s Chronicle, the nation’s longest running locally-produced nightly newsmagazine, since 1995. In 1995, Reinstein hosted the premiere season of the Discovery Channel's Popular Mechanics show.
Out of the studio, he has explored Hawaii's volcanoes, the caves of Puerto Rico, and the islands of Tahiti as host for the Travel Channel's photo/adventure series, Freeze Frame. He also provides reports and commentary on Sunday mornings during WCVB’s On the Record, a program that addresses political issues of the week. Since 2004, he has written a weekly opinion column, “And Another Thing,” which appears on WCVB.com. In 2010, he was one of five national finalists in the Washington Post’s “Great American Pundit” opinion-writing competition.
Mr. Reinstein’s first book is New England Notebook, which recounts many of Reinstein’s favorite people and stories from his travels around New England for Chronicle.
Christopher Castellani is the artistic director of Grub Street, one of the country's leading nonprofit creative writing centers. He is the author of two previous critically-acclaimed novels, A Kiss from Maddalena – winner of the Massachusetts Book Award in 2004 – and The Saint of Lost Things, a BookSense Notable Book that was long-listed for the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award in 2006. Mr. Castellani’s most recent book is All This Talk of Love, an incandescent novel about sacrifice and hope, loss and love, myth and memory.
Michael Lowenthal has been awarded the James Duggins Outstanding Mid-Career Novelists' Prize. He has taught creative writing at Boston College and Hampshire College, and since 2003, has been a core faculty member in the low-residency MFA program at Lesley University. Before becoming a full-time writer, Lowenthal worked as an editor for University Press of New England, where he founded the Hardscrabble Books imprint. Mr. Lowenthal’s book The Paternity Test is a provocative look at the new "family values.” It is one of the first novels to explore the experience of gay men seeking a child through surrogacy.
The Possibility Dogs is auniquely personal and inspiring journey into the rapidly emerging world of psychiatric service dogs, as Susannah Charleson works as an evaluator in shelters, plucking unwanted dogs, big and small, training them for this unique kind of service, and matching them with people in need.
Susannah Charleson, author of New York Times bestseller Scent of the Missing, is a flight instructor, service dog trainer, and canine search-and-rescue team member. She lives with Puzzle, a golden retriever certified for the recovery of missing persons; service dog in-training Jake Piper, a German Shepherd-pit bull-poodle mix; and a rabble of rescued Pomeranians and terriers.
The 1890s saw a revolution in advertising. Cheap paper, faster printing, rural delivery, railroad shipping, and the first modern catalogs. The most prominent of these, reaching American households by the thousands, were seed and nursery catalogs with beautiful pictures of middle-class homes surrounded by sprawling lawns and lush plants-the quintessential English-style garden. America’s Romance with the English Garden is the story of a growing American middle class eager to buy their products. It’s also the story of the beginnings of the modern garden industry.
Thomas Mickey is Professor of Communication Studies at Bridgewater State University. He is a graduate of Boston University, University of Iowa, and Harvard University’s Landscape Institute, and has been a garden columnist for the Brockton Enterprise, Quincy Patriot Ledger, and Portsmouth, New Hampshire’s Seacoast Media. His other books include Best Garden Plants for New England and Deconstructing Public Relations.
John Schwartz is a national correspondent with the New York Times, where he has covered law, science, technology, business, and a broad range of other topics. Prior to that, he worked at the Washington Post and Newsweek. He is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin and University of Texas Law School. Mr. Schwartz’s book Oddly Normal is a parents’ bumpy ride, shared in the hopes that it will help other parents of gay children — and maybe, parents of any child who is different, who is mistreated by others, or who just may not accept himself — to know that they can find their own way to help their child handle the pain that comes from not fitting in.
Zach Wahls is a speaker, writer, and civil rights advocate. He is the founder of Scouts for Equality, a Boy Scouts of America alumni association dedicated to ending the Boy Scouts’ ban on gay members. His video testimony before the Iowa House of Representatives about his life growing up with two moms was YouTube's most-watched political video of 2011. My Two Moms: Lessons of Love, Strength, and What Makes a Family is Zach Wahls “response to all those who say I am ‘different.’” It is an exploration of the values taught by his two moms. Zach Wahls did not have to be the kid to write My Two Moms – there are over two million children of same-sex couples in the world. As Zach says himself, “This is the story of only one family and the thoughts of only one person —though I hope this inspires other kids to share their stories.”
Carole DeSanti clandestinely wrote her debut novel, The Unruly Passions of Eugénie R., for over a decade. Love and war converge in DeSanti’s book through the epic story of a young woman’s struggle with life and love during and after the Second Empire (1860-1871), an era that was transformed by cataclysmic social upheaval. Ms. DeSanti is the winner of the Publishing Triangle Leadership Award, and a longtime advocate of voices in the LGBT community as vice president and editor at Viking Penguin.
The Song of Achilles is Madeline Miller’s first novel. This retelling of the Trojan War was selected as a 2012 Amazon Best Book of the Year, won England’s prestigious Orange Prize for Fiction, and is one of the Must-Read Books of 2013 selected by the Massachusetts Book Awards and the Massachusetts Library Association. Ms. Miller was born in Boston, grew up in Philadelphia and New York City, has bachelors and masters degrees in Latin and Ancient Greek from Brown University, and has been teaching both languages for the past decade. She has also studied at the Yale School of Drama, specializing in adapting classical tales for a modern audience.
Anne Easter Smith, author of A Rose for the Crown and Queen by Right, once again transports readers to the glorious fifteenth-century court of the house of York. In Royal Mistress, a historical novel about the rise and fall of Jane Shore, readers learn about the woman who captivated three of England's most powerful men and has been remembered through the ages as the “merriest mistress” of Edward IV. The dramatic tale of Edward IV's final and favorite mistress, who survived court intrigue, the end of one king's reign, and the turbulent start of another, has been an inspiration to poets and playwrights for 500 years. Smith's rendering of Jane's interactions with her lover's more serious, principled sibling and her vision of the drama-packed four months between Edward's death and Richard's coronation will be especially engrossing to those interested in the legacy of Richard III.
A native of England, Anne Easter Smith has lived in the United States for more than forty years. She was the featured editor at a newspaper in New York State and now lives in Newburyport, Massachusetts.