Telling it True

“Those who cannot remember the past are doomed to repeat it.” ~ George Santayana.  I recently had the honor of moderating a Historical Fiction panel of four authors, Julie Berry, Rachel DeWoskin, Stacey Lee, and Ruta Sepetys. I have this to report: if you love Historical Fiction, rest easy that the genre is in excellent…
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Paying Attention

Attention is the beginning of devotion. ~ Mary Oliver I’ve written before about the importance of unplugging (and the difficulties of doing so) but friends, I’ve been taken by a deeper desire. In this case, the desire looks like moving to Ireland, living in a village where I raise my own food and barter with…
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The Heart of “Heartland”

Have you ever picked up a memoir and felt completely seen? Completely understood? Like someone had been taking notes on your life and caught things that even you missed? That’s how reading Sarah Smarsh’s Heartland: A Memoir of Working Hard and Being Broke in the Richest Country on Earth was for me—illuminating and emotional. While…
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The Upside of Unplugging

Have you ever thought “I’ll just check in with >insert your favorite social media platform or online game here< and then I’ll >insert productive activity you need to undertake here<” only to find that 20, 30, or even 60 minutes have elapsed and left you feeling unfulfilled, vaguely guilty, and less motivated than you were…
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The Great American Read

A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one. —George R.R. Martin I’m going to report this fact, though it hurts me to do so: in a recent Pew study, 24% of US adults said they had not read a book in the last year. (Okay, let’s…
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Hurts So Good

I’ve always liked sad songs, sad movies, sad books. It seems to defy logic sometimes, that something that makes us feel pain or shed tears can be something we like. Or if “like” is the wrong word, perhaps it’s better to say these are things we indulge in. There are plenty of things going on…
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Social Justice Book Club

4pm, Second Sunday each month in Meeting Room A This book club gets us thinking and talking about inequality and injustice in the U.S. Nonfiction, novels, memoirs and more–we seek multiple perspectives, with multiple points of entry, and we work to center the voices of marginalized communities and people through our exploration. Please contact Polli…
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The Dilemma

If you’re a lover of books (or any kind of art, really) you’ll probably have faced this dilemma in your enjoyment of a beloved author – that day you find that they are actually a turd of a human being. It’s happened over and over again to me. Here I stand, talking about books I…
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