Part 1 — Speed Dating with Mass. Authors 2015 @massbook @MassLibAssoc

If you haven’t done speed dating with authors yet, you’ve been missing out on a fun time! This year’s event at the Massachusetts Library Association’s annual conference last week featured eight authors who paired up and went from table to table to converse with us about their books and their writing – sharing stories and giving us a glimpse of the person behind the book – before the timer went off and they had to move on to the next table of readers.

group of people around table with table of books in foreground

Organized and hosted by the Massachusetts Center for the Book, the Speed Dating with Mass. Authors event was a chance to meet and talk with some of the local authors whose books are in the running for a Massachusetts Book Award and are likely to be named Massachusetts Must-Read titles this year in June. The authors and their books were briefly introduced by Sharon Shaloo, executive director of the Massachusetts Center for the Book, which administers the Massachusetts Book Awards, Letters About Literature (State House ceremony coming up on May 18th with speaker Jane Yolen!) and other literary programs throughout the year.

Driving_BackwardsDriving Backward, first-time author Jessica Lander‘s narrative nonfiction book about the people and their stories from the small town of Gilmanton, New Hampshire. Growing up, she spent her summers there in the home that inspired the author of the scandalous novel Peyton Place.

photo of Jessica langer signing books
In Driving Backwards (Tidepool, 2014), Jessica Lander reveals the “incredible, rich stories of ordinary people.”

cover imageCharles Coe is a Boston poet, but Spin Cycles is a short work of fiction intended especially for adult ESOL or reluctant teen readers. This story of a young homeless man in Boston is told in the voice of the unnamed protagonist, revealing “the repetitive simple nature of his days,” the author explained when he arrived at our table.

photo at table
Author Charles Coe said he hopes anyone who likes good storytelling will enjoy Spin Cycles, a work of short fiction written in basic English.

 cover imageThe Orphans of Race Point was my favorite book of 2014, so I was happy to see author Patry Francis at the speed dating event. She said the novel developed out of an image that came to her of a boy hiding in a closet from a traumatic event. Set mainly in Provincetown and New Bedford, Massachusetts, this is a story of love, family, tragedy, faith, and betrayal that will tear your heart out.

author at table with her book
Author Patry Francis signing copies of The Orphans of Race Point

 

 

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