Featured Speakers

Jesmyn Ward


Novelist • Essayist • Memoirist

Jesmyn Ward, whose novel Salvage the Bones won the 2011 National Book Award for Fiction, has been called “fearless and toughly lyrical” by Library Journal. Betsy Burton of the American Booksellers Association has called her “the new Toni Morrison.” Ward’s unflinching portrayals of young black men and women struggling to thrive in a South ravaged by […]

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Dr. Allyson Hobbs

Dr. Allyson Hobbs


Author • Essayist • Historian

Allyson Hobbs is an Associate Professor in the Department of History and the Director of African and African American Studies at Stanford University. She is a Distinguished Lecturer for the Organization of American Historians and a contributing staff writer to The New Yorker. Allyson’s first book, A Chosen Exile: A History of Racial Passing in American Life, published by Harvard […]

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Richard Ford


Pulitzer Prize Winner • Bestselling Author • Novelist

Pulitzer-Prize winning novelist Richard Ford’s “sinewy and distinctively American voice contains the echoing tones of many [literary] ancestors” (The New York Times). Mark Twain, Sherwood Anderson, William Faulkner, and Ernest Hemingway often come to mind when discussing Ford’s work. In person, Ford’s voice is similarly impressive; his Mississippi beginnings yield a generosity of spirit, a honed eccentricity, […]

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Paul Beatty

Paul Beatty


Bestselling Author • Novelist • Poet

Performance artist, poet, and novelist Paul Beatty is among the funniest and most fearless writers in contemporary fiction. He has been called “one of the shrewdest cultural commentators, and hilarious cutups, of his generation” (Interview).

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Justin Cronin


Bestselling Author • Novelist

The May 2016 release of Justin Cronin’s The City of Mirrors, the final installment in The Passage Trilogy, has once again launched him to the top of the New York Times bestseller list. Cronin, dubbed “an unlikely heir to America’s genre-fiction throne” by The New York Times, has produced “an undeniable and compelling epic.”

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Mitchell S. Jackson

Mitchell S. Jackson


Author • Filmmaker

“Mitchell Jackson writes into Portland like Edward P. Jones writes into Washington, DC, with his judicious left eye on the full hearts of his characters and his vigilant right eye attuned to the wolf at their door. His classically orchestrated novel, The Residue Years, is suffused with humor, lyricism and compassion…Jackson is a powerfully confident […]

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Paul Theroux


Bestselling Author • Novelist • Travel Writer

Paul Theroux is described by writer and friend Jonathan Raban as “utterly American, possessing all of those democratic, Yankee, can-do qualities.” These traits have served him well on explorations around the world for over fifty years, pen in hand, always with an eye for the odd, compelling details. Readers depend on his uncompromising, sometimes brazen […]

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Subjects

New & Noteworthy

Sing, Unburied, Sing

Praise for Sing, Unburied, Sing

Sing, Unburied, Sing is a road novel turned on its head, and a family story with its feet to the fire. Lyric and devastating, Ward’s unforgettable characters straddle past and present in this spellbinding return to the rural Mississippi of her first book. You’ll never read anything like it.

Ayana Mathis, author of The Twelve Tribes of Hattie

Between Them: Remembering My Parents

Praise for Between Them: Remembering My Parents

By any standards, this is a singular volume, as peculiarly personal as it is slim…a subtle, careful testament to devotion and a son’s love for his parents.

Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

The Story of Arthur Truluv

Praise for The Story of Arthur Truluv

Forthcoming in November 2017

Fishing: How the Sea Fed Civilization

Praise for Fishing: How the Sea Fed Civilization