The Book and Author Society is thrilled to offer five fantastic authors for our Fall 2021 Virtual Author Series. All of these events are FREE, so please share them with your friends, co-workers, library patrons, and fellow book-lovers. Our lineup includes:
- Nghi Vo – “The Chosen and the Beautiful”
- Jean Meltzer – “The Matzah Ball”
- Mallory O’Meara – “Girly Drinks: A World History of Women and Alcohol”
- Available Recorded Events
Getting a Signed Bookplate
Books can be purchased from our online bookshop.org store. Please keep your order number handy; we’ll ask for it as part of our post-event feedback survey so we can send you a free signed bookplate.
Share the Love!
Any of our recorded book talks (upcoming and past events) can be freely shared. Look for them on our YouTube channel and share them with anyone you like. Subscribe to the channel and click the notification icon there to get automatic notifications whenever we add new recordings.
Monday, November 8 at 7pm on Zoom
About Nghi Vo
Nghi Vo is the author of the acclaimed novellas When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain and The Empress of Salt and Fortune, a Hugo, Locus, and Ignyte Award finalist and the winner of Reddit’s Stabby and IAFA’s Crawford Award. Born in Illinois, she now lives on the shores of Lake Michigan. She believes in the ritual of lipstick, the power of stories, and the right to change your mind. The Chosen and the Beautiful is her debut novel.
About “The Chosen and the Beautiful”
Jordan Baker grows up in the most rarefied circles of 1920s American society—she has money, education, a killer golf handicap, and invitations to some of the most exclusive parties of the Jazz Age. She’s also queer and Asian, a Vietnamese adoptee treated as an exotic attraction by her peers, while the most important doors remain closed to her.
But the world is full of wonders: infernal pacts and dazzling illusions, lost ghosts and elemental mysteries. In all paper is fire, and Jordan can burn the cut paper heart out of a man. She just has to learn how.
Nghi Vo’s debut novel, The Chosen and the Beautiful, reinvents this classic of the American canon as a coming-of-age story full of magic, mystery, and glittering excess, and introduces a major new literary voice.
Monday, November 22 at 7pm on Zoom
About Jean Meltzer
JEAN MELTZER has the unique distinction of being the world’s only Emmy-award winning, chronically-ill and disabled, rabbinical-school drop-out. Yet, it is this extraordinary background — coupled with a firm belief in holding onto your joy and seeking out happy endings — which forms the basis of her diverse work.
Jean received her BFA from New York University, Tisch School of the Arts, Department of Dramatic Writing in 2002. After graduation, she served as Creative Director of Tapestry International, an Oscar-winning television and film production company, where she oversaw the writing, development and production for over 250-hours of children’s television, and won numerous awards for her work. In 2006, Jean moved to Israel to pursue a career in the rabbinate, and studied at several colleges and seminaries for five years. She also became an outspoken advocate for the disease, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS). In 2012, Jean ended her rabbinical studies and spent the next two years homebound due to this disease.
Today, Jean lives a thriving, chronically-fabulous, Jewish life in Virginia. She sees her challenges as part of a larger journey and is eager to share her stories with others. Her first book, The Matzah Ball, will be published by Mira in 2021. She is represented by Carolyn Forde and Marilyn Biderman at Transatlantic Agency.
About “The Matzah Ball”
Rachel Rubenstein-Goldblatt is a nice Jewish girl with a shameful secret: she loves Christmas. For a decade she’s hidden her career as a Christmas romance novelist from her family. Her talent has made her a bestseller even as her chronic illness has always kept the kind of love she writes about out of reach.
But when her diversity-conscious publisher insists she write a Hanukkah romance, her well of inspiration suddenly runs dry. Hanukkah’s not magical. It’s not merry. It’s not Christmas. Desperate not to lose her contract, Rachel’s determined to find her muse at the Matzah Ball, a Jewish music celebration on the last night of Hanukkah, even if it means working with her summer camp archenemy—Jacob Greenberg.
Though Rachel and Jacob haven’t seen each other since they were kids, their grudge still glows brighter than a menorah. But as they spend more time together, Rachel finds herself drawn to Hanukkah—and Jacob—in a way she never expected. Maybe this holiday of lights will be the spark she needed to set her heart ablaze.
Monday, December 6 at 7pm on Zoom
About Mallory O’Meara
Mallory O’Meara is the award winning and bestselling writer of The Lady from the Black Lagoon. Every week, she cohosts the literary podcast Reading Glasses. She lives in the mountains near Los Angeles with her two cats, where she is working on her next nonfiction book. Bourbon is her drink of choice.
About “Girly Drinks”
From Los Angeles Times bestselling author Mallory O’Meara comes a lively and engrossing feminist history of women drinking through the ages
Strawberry daiquiris. Skinny martinis. Vodka sodas with lime. These are the cocktails that come in sleek-stemmed glasses, bright colors and fruity flavors—these are the Girly Drinks.
From the earliest days of civilization, alcohol has been at the center of social rituals and cultures worldwide. But when exactly did drinking become a gendered act? And why have bars long been considered “places for men” when, without women, they might not even exist?
With whip-smart insight and boundless curiosity, Girly Drinks unveils an entire untold history of the female distillers, drinkers and brewers who have played a vital role in the creation and consumption of alcohol, from ancient Sumerian beer goddess Ninkasi to iconic 1920s bartender Ada Coleman. Filling a crucial gap in culinary history, O’Meara dismantles the long-standing patriarchal traditions at the heart of these very drinking cultures, in the hope that readers everywhere can look to each celebrated woman in this book—and proudly have what she’s having.
Monday, September 20, 2021
About Amber Garza
Amber Garza has had a passion for the written word since she was a child making books out of notebook paper and staples. Her hobbies include reading and singing. Coffee and wine are her drinks of choice (not necessarily in that order). She writes while blaring music, and talks about her characters like they’re real people. She lives with her husband and two kids in Folsom, California, which is—no joke—home to another Amber Garza.
About “Where I Left Her”
Whitney had some misgivings when she dropped her increasingly moody teenage daughter, Amelia, off at Lauren’s house. She’d never met the parents, and usually she’d go in, but Amelia clearly wasn’t going to let something so humiliating happen, so instead Whitney waved to her daughter before pulling away from the little house with the roses in front.
But when she goes back the next day, an elderly couple answers the door—Amelia and Lauren aren’t there, and this couple swears they never were, that she’s at the wrong house. As Whitney searches for Amelia, she uncovers a trail of lies her daughter has told her—from the Finsta account to rumors of a secret relationship. Does she really even know this girl she’s raised? And Amelia’s not the only one with secrets. Could Whitney’s own demons have something to do with her daughter’s disappearance, and can Whitney find her before it’s too late?
“In this high-tension domestic drama, nothing is as it seems. Don’t look away, you won’t want to miss a thing!” —J.T. Ellison, USA TODAY bestselling author of Her Dark Lies
Monday, October 18
In response to a question by an attendee, Angeline mentioned some books by Native American authors she recommends:
- Murder on the Red River by Marcie R. Rendon (first book in a series)
- The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline (sequel out!)
- Crazy Horse’s Girlfriend by Erika T. Wurth
- Authors she mentioned: Darcy Little Badger, Kelli Jo Ford, Cynthia Leitich Smith
About Angeline Boulley
Angeline Boulley, an enrolled member of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians, is a storyteller who writes about her Ojibwe community in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. She is a former Director of the Office of Indian Education at the U.S. Department of Education. Angeline lives in southwest Michigan, but her home will always be on Sugar Island. Firekeeper’s Daughter is her debut novel.
Special Guest Interviewer – Melissa Isaac
Melissa Isaac is Anishinaabe Kwe from the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan. Her Anishinaabe name is Swan Woman and she is sturgeon clan. She is a wife and mother to 4 children. She is a former elementary teacher and lifelong educator. She enjoys traveling to pow-wows with her family where she dances woodland style. Melissa prides herself on having “big auntie power.”
About “Firekeeper’s Daughter”
Eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. She dreams of a fresh start at college, but when family tragedy strikes, Daunis puts her future on hold to look after her fragile mother. The only bright spot is meeting Jamie, the charming new recruit on her brother Levi’s hockey team.
Yet even as Daunis falls for Jamie, she senses the dashing hockey star is hiding something. Everything comes to light when Daunis witnesses a shocking murder, thrusting her into an FBI investigation of a lethal new drug.
Reluctantly, Daunis agrees to go undercover, drawing on her knowledge of chemistry and Ojibwe traditional medicine to track down the source. But the search for truth is more complicated than Daunis imagined, exposing secrets and old scars. At the same time, she grows concerned with an investigation that seems more focused on punishing the offenders than protecting the victims.
Now, as the deceptions—and deaths—keep growing, Daunis must learn what it means to be a strong Anishinaabe kwe (Ojibwe woman) and how far she’ll go for her community, even if it tears apart the only world she’s ever known.