Upcoming Events | Season 3 Preview

Chills & Thrills with Stephen Graham Jones

Wednesday, October 4 at 7 PM CST

Stephen Graham Jones is the New York Times bestselling author of The Only Good Indians and Don’t Fear the Reaper. He has been an NEA fellowship recipient and been recipient of several awards including: the Ray Bradbury Award from the Los Angeles Times, the Bram Stoker Award, the Shirley Jackson Award, the Jesse Jones Award for Best Work of Fiction from the Texas Institute of Letters, the Independent Publishers Award for Multicultural Fiction, and the Alex Award from American Library Association. He is the Ivena Baldwin Professor of English at the University of Colorado Boulder.

Illinois librarian and Readers' Advisor Becky Spratford will join Stephen in conversation. She trains library staff all over the world on how to match books with readers through the local public library and runs the critically acclaimed blog RA for All. A devout horror fan, she writes a horror review column for Library Journal, is the author of The Reader’s Advisory Guide to Horror, and is a proud member of the Horror Writers Association.

Food Family & Folktales: A Conversation with Grace Lin

Tuesday, October 17 at 7 PM CST

The season continues with Food, Family, and Folktales: A Conversation with Grace Lin, award-winning and New York Times bestselling author/illustrator of picture books, early readers, and middle-grade novels. 

Lin will discuss why she writes books for the youngest readers through middle graders, how she illustrates them, her latest Chinese Menu: The History, Myths, and Legends Behind Your Favorite Foods, and will lead an interactive drawing activity.

Lin was recognized in 2016 by President Obama’s office as a Champion of Change for Asian American and Pacific Islander Art and Storytelling and, in 2022, was awarded the Children’s Literature Legacy Award from the American Library Association. Her work received the Chinese American Librarians Association Annual Best Book Award.

Season 3 Past Events

The Power of Story with Colson Whitehead

Wednesday, September 6, 2023 

Kicking off our third season, we hosted two-time Pulitzer Prize winning author Colson Whitehead to our Illinois libraries. The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Underground Railroad, The Nickel Boys, The Noble Hustle, Zone One, Sag Harbor, The Intuitionist, John Henry Days, Apex Hides the Hurt, and a collection of essays, Whitehead is only the fourth writer to win two Pulitzers in the Fiction category (for Underground Railroad in 2018 and The Nickel Boys in 2020). His latest bestselling novel, Harlem Shuffle, was published in 2021.

Previous Season Events

Season 2 | 2022-23

Braiding Sweetgrass: A Conversation with Robin Wall Kimmerer   

Wed, Jun 21, 2023

A Conversation with Jesmyn Ward   

Tue, Jun 6, 2023

On Being Fabulous with Jonathan Van Ness & Kristi Yamaguchi 

Wed, May 17, 2023

Drawing Comics with Jarrett J. Krosoczka 

Sat, May 6, 2023

Will Shortz: Secrets of a Puzzle Master  

Tue, Apr 25, 2023

Danny Trejo Talks Tacos, Hollywood, & Redemption  

Tue, Apr 4, 2023

The Weird & Wonderful World with Mary Roach  

with Annalee Newitz

Wed, Mar 1, 2023

Kwame Alexander: Saying Yes to Your Story 

Wed, Feb 8, 2023

A Conversation with Ross Gay 

with Dan "Sully" Sullivan

Wed, Jan 11, 2023

A Conversation with Shauna Sever 

with Louisa Chu

Tue, Dec 13, 2022

A Conversation with Caitlin Doughty 

with Mark Bazer

Wed, Nov 16, 2022

Marlee Matlin: From Oscar to West Wing and Beyond

Wed, Sep 17, 2022

Pilot Season Events | 2022

An Evening with Michelle Zauner

with Jessica Hopper

Thursday, June 30, 2022

 An Evening with Chef Kwame Onwuachi

with Erick Williams

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

 Jessamine Chan & Emily Maloney

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Nick Offerman & Jeff Tweedy

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

An Evening with Jenny Lawson

with R. Eric Thomas

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

An Evening with Jasmine Guillory

with Morgan Rogers

Wednesday, February 16, 2022

An Evening with Silvia Moreno-Garcia

with Gus Moreno

Wednesday, January 26, 2022