Library Journal Day of Dialog 2021 Fall

For more than two decades, Library Journal’s Day of Dialog has been the most anticipated librarian-only gathering of the year. Now it’s gone digital and is free to attend! The next all-day event is scheduled for September 23 and will feature a close-up look at the biggest forthcoming books for winter/spring 2022.

Featured authors range from Emily St. John Mandel (Sea of Tranquility), Quan Barry (When I’m Gone, Look for Me in the East), and Diana Abu-Jaber (Fencing with the King) to Jonathan Evison (Small World), Hester Fox (A Lullaby for Witches) and Jodi Picoult (Wish You Were Here).

Thriller writers from Lucy Foley (The Paris Apartment) to Joseph Kanon (The Berlin Exchange) will also present, and mystery fans will be delighted to discover four debut authors. History embraces Rosemary Sullivan’s The Betrayal of Anne Frank and Jeff Yang, Phil Yu, & Philip Wang’s Rise: A Pop History of Asian America from the Nineties to Now, while social justice issues will be discussed by author like Wajahat Ali (Go Back to Where You Came From and Laura Coates (Just Pursuit).

And you still get to dialog by visiting virtual booths, talking with authors, and networking with colleagues.

We are anticipating an unprecedented number of library and education professionals to attend this event, so you may find the environment or live sessions become full during the day.

But fear not! All sessions and author chats will be available for viewing on-demand within an hour of their initial broadcast, and the entire event will be available on-demand until December 23, 2021.


9:00 AM - 9:30 AM ET | Exhibit Hall Opens/Visit the Booths


9:00 AM – 9:15 AM ET: Live chat with Natalie Walters, Lights Out (Bethany House/Revell)    
9:00 AM – 9:30 AM ET: The Birth of a Book with author Judith Arnold (The Story Plant)
9:15 AM – 9:30 AM ET: Live chat with Amanda Cox, Secret Keepers of Old Depot Grocery (Bethany House/Revell)
9:15 AM – 9:30 AM ET: A welcome chat with me, Melissa Nicholas (Hachette)


9:30 AM - 10:25 AM ET
Visceral Thrills

Top-notch authors keep readers on the edge of their seats.

Brian Andrews & Jeffrey Wilson, Dark Intercept. Tyndale House Publishers 
Isabel Cañas, The Hacienda. Berkley: Penguin Random House  
Lucy Foley, The Paris Apartment. William Morrow: HarperCollins 
Rachel Hawkins, Reckless Girls. St. Martin’s Press: Macmillan
Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen, The Golden Couple. St. Martin’s Press: Macmillan 
Moderator: Jeff Ayers, Co-Executive Director, Thrillerfest

9:30 AM - 10:25 AM ET
Fiction: The Consequences of Conflict

From World War II through the Cold War to contemporary tensions.

David R. Gillham, Shadows of Berlin. Sourcebooks Landmark: Sourcebooks
Natasha Lester, The Riviera House. Forever: Hachette Book Group
Heather B. Moore, The Slow March of Light. Shadow Mountain Publishing 
Zarqa Nawaz, Jameela Green Ruins Everything. Mariner Books: HarperCollins
Yara Zgheib, No Land to Light On. Atria: Simon & Schuster
Moderators: Marianne Paterniti, Book Groups Coordinator, Darien Library, CT
Pat Sheary, Head of Adult Programming, Darien Library, CT
Virginia Grubbs, Assistant Head of Reader Services, Darien Library, CT

10:30 AM - 11:10 AM ET 
The Literary/Speculative Fiction Mix

The best writers sometimes go beyond realism to show us what’s real.  

Jennifer Egan, The Candy House. Scribner: Simon & Schuster 
Claire Kohda, Woman, Eating. HarperVia: HarperCollins 
Sequoia Nagamatsu, How High We Go in the Dark. William Morrow: HarperCollins
Alexis Schaitkin, Elsewhere. Celadon Books: Macmillan

Moderator: Luke Gorham, Galesburg P.L., IL 

10:30 AM - 11:10 AM ET
Four Top Mystery Debuts

Discover tomorrow’s top whodunit authors today.

Eli Cranor, Don’t Know Tough. Soho Crime 
Eva Jurczyk, The Department of Rare Books and Special Collections. Poisoned Pen Press: Sourcebooks 
Nita Prose, The Maid. Ballantine Books: Penguin Random House 
Brendan Slocumb, The Violin Conspiracy. Anchor: Penguin Random House 
Moderator: Lesa Holstine, Evansville Vanderburgh P.L., IN

11:10 AM - 11:30 AM ET Break/Visit the Exhibit Hall

11:00 AM – 11:30 AM ET: Chat with Rachel Hawkins, author of The Wife Upstairs (Baker & Taylor)
11:10 AM – 11:30 AM ET: Live chat with Jane Kirkpatrick, The Healing of Natalie Curtis (Bethany House/Revell)
11:10 – 11:30 AM: Join Marketing & Publicity director Susannah Ames to hear about some big buzz titles coming out in Spring 2022! (ECW)
11:00 AM – 11:30 AM ET: 2021 Indie Author of the Year, Amy Rivers, Interview with Library Journal (Indie Author Project)
11:15 AM – 12:05 PM ET: Chat with Eva Jurczyk, author of The Department of Rare Books and Special Collections (Sourcebooks)


11:30 AM - 12:25 PM ET
Thrills To Ponder

Part of the reading pleasure here comes from the writers’ deft take on sociopolitical issues.

Delilah S. Dawson, The Violence. Del Rey: Penguin Random House 
Robyn Gigl, Survivor’s Guilt. Kensington Publishing Corp.
Joseph Kanon, The Berlin Exchange. Scribner: Simon & Schuster 
Danya Kukafka, Notes on an Execution. William Morrow: HarperCollins 
Grace D. Li, Portrait of a Thief. Tiny Reparations Books: Penguin Random House 
Moderator: Michael Pucci, South Orange P.L., NJ

11:30 AM - 12:25 PM ET
Rebuilding Family

Parents reaching out to children, children adjusting to new family.

Daniel Black, Don’t Cry for Me. Hanover Square Press: Harlequin 
Joshua Ferris, A Calling for Charlie Barnes. Little, Brown & Company: Hachette Book Group 
Kai Harris, What the Fireflies Knew. Tiny Reparations Books: Penguin Random House 
Jean Hanff Korelitz, The Latecomer. Celadon Books: Macmillan 
Charmaine Wilkerson, Black Cake. Ballantine: Penguin Random House 
Moderator: Lillian Dabney, The Seattle Athenaeum

12:30-1:00 Break/Visit the Exhibit Hall

12:30 PM – 12:45 PM ET: Live chat with Sarah Thomas, The Finder of Forgotten Things (Bethany House/Revell)
12:30 PM – 1:00 PM ET: Live chat with Louisa Morgan, The Great Witch of Brittany (Hachette)
12:30 PM – 1:20 PM ET: Live chat with David R. Gillham, author of Shadows of Berlin (Sourcebooks)
12:30 PM – 1:00 PM ET: Book Buzz (Soho Press)    
12:30 PM – 1:00 PM ET: Writing From the Pain with authors Zachary Steele and Benji Carr (The Story Plant)
12:45 PM – 1:00 PM ET: Recorded chat with Kimberly Duffy, Every Word Unsaid (Bethany House/Revell)

1:00 PM - 1:55 PM ET

Traveling through the past to understand the present.

Dennis Duncan, Index, A History of the: A Bookish Adventure from Medieval Manuscripts to the Digital Age. Norton: W. W. Norton & Company 
Imani Perry, South to America: A Journey Below the Mason-Dixon To Understand the Soul of a Nation. Ecco: HarperCollins 
Jason Sommer, Shmuel’s Bridge: Following the Tracks to Auschwitz with My Survivor Father. Imagine: Charlesbridge 
Jeff Yang, Phil Yu, & Philip Wang. Rise: A Pop History of Asian America from the Nineties to Now. Mariner Books: HarperCollins 
Moderator: Stephanie Sendaula, Associate Editor, LJ Reviews

1:00 PM - 1:55 PM ET
Linking Stories Through Time

Narratives built on boundary-crossing resonances, from four leading authors.

Quan Barry, When I’m Gone, Look for Me in the East. Pantheon: Penguin Random House 
Jonathan Evison, Small World. Dutton: Penguin Random House 
Hester Fox, A Lullaby for Witches. Graydon House: Harlequin 
Emily St. John Mandel, Sea of Tranquility. Knopf: Penguin Random House 
Moderator: Lisa Peet, News Editor, Library Journal

2:00 PM - 2: 55 PM ET
Historical Fiction: The Stories We Tell

From urban folklore to enslavement in mid-1800s America to Jazz Age power struggles.

John Adcox, Christmas Past: A Ghostly Winter Tale. The Story Plant 
Jabari Asim, Yonder. S. & S.: Simon & Schuster 
Jillian Cantor, Beautiful Little Fools, Harper: HarperCollins 
Hernan Diaz, Trust. Riverhead: Penguin Random House 
Moderator: Julie Kane, Washington & Lee Lib., Lexington, VA

2:00 PM - 2:55 PM ET
Social Justice Issues

The many ways of pursuing justice.

Wajahat Ali, Go Back to Where You Came From: And Other Helpful Recommendations on How To Become American. Norton: W. W. Norton & Company 
Maude Barlow, Still Hopeful: Lessons from a Lifetime of Activism. ECW Press 
Valena Beety, Manifesting Justice: Wrongly Convicted Women Reclaim Their Rights. Kensington Publishing Corp.
Laura Coates, Just Pursuit: A Black Prosecutor’s Fight for Fairness.  S. & S.: Simon & Schuster 
Paul Klein, Change for Good; An Action-Oriented Approach for Businesses To Benefit from Solving the World's Most Urgent Social Problems. ECW Press
Moderator: Leah Huey, Dekalb, P.L., IL

3:00 PM - 3:30 PM ET Break/Visit the Exhibit Hall


3:00 PM – 3:15 PM ET: Live chat with Elizabeth Camden, Carved in Stone (Bethany House/Revell)    
3:00 PM – 3:30 PM: Join editor and author Jen Sookfong Lee for a chat about supporting diversity among readers at libraries and how publishers, authors, and librarians fit into that goal. (ECW)
3:00 PM – 3:20 PM ET: Live chat with Jillian Cantor (HarperCollins)
3:00 PM – 3:30 PM ET: Turning Real Life into Fiction with authors Steven Manchester and Susan Petrone (The Story Plant)

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM ET
Fiction: Crossing Boundaries 

Debut authors and award winners take us around the world.

Diana Abu-Jaber, Fencing with the King. Norton: W. W. Norton, 
Myriam J A Chancy, What Storm, What Thunder. Tin House Books, dist. by  W. W. Norton & Company 
Andrea Yaryura Clark, On a Night of a Thousand Stars. Grand Central Publishing: Hachette Books Group
Mesha Maren, Perpetual West. Algonquin Books: Workman
Thrity Umrigar, Honor. Algonquin: Workman
Moderator: Barbara Hoffert, Editor, Prepub Alert, LJ

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM ET
Fiction: Aiming To Heal 

In troubled times, what’s the best way to pull ourselves together?

Erin Bartels, The Girl Who Could Breathe Under Water. Revell: Baker Publishing Group 
Vanessa Miller, Something Good. Thomas Nelson: HarperChristian Publishing 
Xavier Navarro Aquino, Velorio. HarperVia: HarperCollins 
Jodi Picoult, Wish You Were Here. Ballantine Books: Penguin Random House 
Weike Wang, Joan Is Okay. Random House: Penguin Random House 
Moderator: Lynnanne Pearson, Skokie P.L., IL


4:30 PM – 5:00 PM ET: Chat with Kristin Ward, Award-Winning Indie Author (Indie Author Project)




Diana Abu-Jaber is the award-winning author of seven books of fiction and nonfiction, including Crescent and The Language of Baklava. She lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Her new novel, Fencing with the King, will be published by Norton in March 2022.


John Adcox is the author of Raven Wakes the World: A Winter Tale and Christmas Past: A Ghostly Winter Tale, both illustrated by his wife, the artist Carol Bales. John is also the CEO of Gramarye Media, a disruptive “next generation” book publisher and movie studio. Many more of his books are forthcoming. He lives in Atlanta.


Wajahat Ali is a columnist at the Daily Beast and Senior Fellow at the Western States Center and Auburn Seminary. He has written for the New York Times, the Atlantic, and the Washington Post; appears frequently on CNN and MSNBC; and lectures around the world. He lives in the Washington, DC, area. His new book, Go Back to Where You Came From, will be published by Norton in January 2022.



Andrews & Wilson is the bestselling writing team of Brian Andrews and Jeffrey Wilson—the authors behind the Shepherds series, the Tier One and Sons of Valor series, and Rogue Asset, the ninth book in the WEB Griffin Presidential Agent series. They write action-adventure and covert operations novels honoring the heroic men and women who serve in the military and intelligence communities.


Xavier Navarro Aquino was born and raised in Puerto Rico. His fiction has appeared in Tin House, McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, and Guernica. He has been awarded scholarships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference,  the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, a MacDowell Fellowship, and an ACLS Emerging Voices Fellowship at Dartmouth College. Aquino is currently an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Notre Dame where he teaches in the MFA program.


Jabari Asim is a writer and multidisciplinary artist. He directs the MFA program in creative writing at Emerson College, where he is also the Elma Lewis Distinguished Fellow in Social Justice. His nonfiction books include The N Word: Who Can Say It, Who Shouldn’t, and Why; What Obama Means: For Our Culture, Our Politics, Our Future; Not Guilty: Twelve Black Men Speak Out on Law, Justice, and Life; and We Can’t Breathe: On Black Lives, White Lies, and the Art of Survival. His books for children include Whose Toes Are Those? and Preaching to the Chickens: The Story of Young John Lewis. His works of fiction include A Taste of Honey and Only the Strong.


Maude Barlow is the bestselling author of 20 books. She sits on the board of Food & Water Watch, the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature, and is a councillor with the World Future Council. She served as senior water advisor to the UN General Assembly and was a leader in the campaign to have water recognized as a human right.


Born in Saigon and raised in Danvers, Massachusetts, Quan Barry is the author of the novels. She Weeps Each Time You're Born and We Ride Upon Sticks, a winner of the 2020 ALA Alex Award and TK re best of picks, as well as four books of poetry, including Water Puppets, which won the AWP Donald Hall Prize for Poetry and was a PEN Open Book finalist. She lives in Wisconsin and teaches at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where she is the Lorraine Hansberry Professor of English.


Erin Bartels is the award-winning author of All That We Carried, 2020 Christy finalist The Words between Us, and We Hope for Better Things, a 2020 Michigan Notable Book, 2020 WFWA Star Award–winner, and 2019 Christy finalist. A publishing professional for 19 years, she is the director of WFWA’s annual writers retreat in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She lives in Lansing, Michigan, with her husband, Zachary, and their son. Find her online at


Valena Beety is a former federal prosecutor and innocence litigator, who represented Leigh Stubbs in post-conviction. She has successfully exonerated wrongfully convicted clients, obtained presidential grants of clemency for drug offenders, served as an elected board member of the national Innocence Network, and she was appointed commissioner on the West Virginia Governor’s Indigent Defense Commission. She is currently a Professor of Law at Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law and the Deputy Director of the Academy for Justice, a criminal justice center at the law school that connects research with policy reform.  Previously, she founded and directed the West Virginia Innocence Project at the West Virginia University College of Law and practiced as a Senior Staff Attorney at the Mississippi Innocence Project, representing clients on death row.


Daniel Black is an author and professor of African American studies and English at Clark Atlanta University, His books include The Coming, Perfect Peace, and They Tell Me of a Home. He is the winner of the Distinguished Writer's Award for the Mid-Atlantic Writer's Association has been nominated for The Townsend Literary Prize, The Ernest J. Gaines Award, the Ferro-Grumbley Literary Prize, the Lambda Literary Award, and the Georgia Author of the Year Prize. He was raised in Blackwell, Arkansas and lives in Atlanta, Georgia.


Isabel Cañas is a Mexican-American speculative fiction writer. After having lived in Mexico, Scotland, Egypt, and Turkey, among other places, she has settled (for now) in New York City, where she works on her PhD dissertation in medieval Islamic literature and writes fiction inspired by her research and her heritage.


Jillian Cantor has a BA in English from Penn State University and an MFA from the University of Arizona. She is the author of award-winning and bestselling novels for teens and adults, including The Hours Count, Margot, The Lost Letter, In Another Time, and Half Life. Born and raised in a suburb of Philadelphia, Cantor currently lives in Arizona with her husband and two sons.


Myriam J. A. Chancy is a Haitian-Canadian-American writer, the HBA Chair in the Humanities at Scripps College in Claremont, California, and a Fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. Her new novel, What Storm, What Thunder, will be published by Tin House in October 2021.


Andrea Yaryura Clark grew up in Argentina amid the political violence of the 1970s until her family moved to North America. After completing her university studies, she returned to Buenos Aires to reconnect with her roots. She followed with interest the stories then emerging about the children of the "Disappeared"—the youngest victims of Argentina’s military dictatorship in the 1970s—who were coming of age and grappling with the fates of their families. She conducted numerous interviews documenting their stories, which inspired her debut novel of historical fiction, ON A NIGHT OF A THOUSAND STARS, coming from Grand Central Publishing in March 2022. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, two sons and a spirited terrier.



Laura Coates is a CNN senior legal analyst, SiriusXM host, and adjunct professor at the George Washington University School of Law. A former federal prosecutor, Coates served as Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia and a Trial Attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice, specializing in the enforcement of voting rights throughout the United States. As a civil rights attorney, she traveled throughout the nation supervising local and national elections and led investigations into allegations of unconstitutional voting practices. In private practice, Laura was an intellectual property litigator with an expertise in First Amendment and media law. A graduate of Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs, and the University of Minnesota Law School.



Eli Cranor played quarterback at every level: peewee to professional, and then coached high school football for five years. His fiction has won The Greensboro Review's Robert Watson Literary Prize and been a runner-up for The Missouri Review's Miller Prize. His debut novel, Don't Know Tough, won the Peter Lovesey First Crime Novel Contest. Eli is currently at work on his next novel.



Delilah S. Dawson is the author of the New York Times bestseller Star Wars: Phasma and Star Wars Galaxy's Edge: Black Spire, the Tales of Pell (with Kevin Hearne), the Hit series, the Blud series,and the Shadow series(written as Lila Bowen),as well as the creator-owned comics Ladycastle, Sparrowhawk, and Star Pig. Her most recent book is the middle-grade ghost story Mine. Her next book, The Violence, releases in February 2022. Find her online at



A finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for fiction and the PEN/Faulkner Award, Hernan Diaz’s work has been translated into more than twenty languages. He is the recipient of a Whiting Award, the winner of the William Saroyan International Prize, and has received a fellowship from the New York Public Library’s Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers. His first novel, In the Distance, was a Publisher's Weekly Top 10 Book of the Year and one of Lit Hub’s Top 20 Books of the Decade. He lives in Brooklyn.



Dennis Duncan is a lecturer in English at University College London. His writing has appeared in the Guardian, the Times Literary Supplement, and the London Review of Books, and he is the coeditor of Book Parts. He lives in London. His new book, Index, A History of the, will be published by Norton in February 2022.



Jennifer Egan is the author of six previous books of fiction: Manhattan Beach, winner of the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction; A Visit from the Goon Squad, which won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award; The Keep; the story collection Emerald City; Look at Me, a National Book Award Finalist; and The Invisible Circus. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's Magazine, Granta, McSweeney's, and The New York Times Magazine.



Jonathan Evison is the author of the novels All About Lulu; West of Here; The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving; This Is Your Life, Harriet Chance!; Lawn Boy; and Legends of the North Cascades. He lives with his wife and family in Washington State.



Joshua Ferris is the author of three previous novels, Then We Came to the End, The Unnamed and To Rise Again at a Decent Hour, and a collection of stories, The Dinner Party. He was a finalist for the National Book Award, winner of the Barnes and Noble Discover Award and the PEN/Hemingway Award, and was named one of The New Yorker's "20 Under 40" writers in 2010. To Rise Again at a Decent Hour won the Dylan Thomas Prize and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. His short stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Granta, and Best American Short Stories. He lives in New York.



Lucy Foley studied English liter­ature at Durham University and University College London and worked for several years as a fiction edi­tor in the publishing industry. She is the New York Times bestselling author of five novels including The Guest List and The Hunt­ing Party. She lives in London.


Hester Fox is a full-time writer and mother, with a background in museum work and historical archaeology. Most weekends you can find Hester exploring one of the many historic cemeteries in the area, browsing bookshops, or enjoying a seasonal latte while writing at a café. She lives outside of Boston with her husband and their son.


Robyn Gigl is an attorney, speaker and activist who has been honored by the ACLU-NJ and the NJ Pride Network for her work on behalf of the LGBTQ community. Appointed by the New Jersey Supreme Court to the Court's Committee on Diversity Inclusion and Community Engagement, she’s practiced law for more than 40 years, representing clients in state and federal courts. She also is active in the New Jersey State Bar Association where she is a member of the Diversity Committee, the Women in the Profession Section and a Past Chair of the Bar's LGBT Rights Section. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of Garden State Equality, NJ’s largest LGBTQ+ Civil Rights Organization. A frequent lecturer on diversity issues, she lives in New Jersey and can be found online at or on Twitter @RobynGigl. 


David R. Gillham is the New York Times bestselling author of City of Women and Annelies. Gillham spent more than a decade in the book business, and he now lives with his family in Western Massachusetts.


Kai Harris is a writer and educator from Detroit, Michigan, who uses her voice to uplift the Black community through realistic fiction centered on the Black experience. Her work has appeared in Guernica, Kweli Journal, Longform, and the Killens Review, amongst others. A graduate of Western Michigan University’s PhD program, Kai now lives in the Bay Area with her husband, three daughters, and dog Tabasco, where she is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Santa Clara University. Her debut novel, What the Fireflies Knew, will be published by Tiny Reparations Books in February 2022. Find her online at


Rachel Hawkins is the New York Times bestselling author of The Wife Upstairs, as well as multiple books for young readers, and her work has been translated in over a dozen countries. She studied gender and sexuality in Victorian literature at Auburn University and currently lives in Alabama.


Greer Hendricks is the #1 New York Times bestselling co-author of The Wife Between Us, An Anonymous Girl and You Are Not Alone. The Wife Between Us has been optioned for film by Amblin Entertainment, with Greer and her co-author, Sarah Pekkanen, hired to write the screenplay. An Anonymous Girl and You Are Not Alone have been optioned for television, with Greer and Sarah tapped to executive produce. Prior to becoming a novelist, Greer served as Vice President and Senior Editor at Simon & Schuster. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Allure, and Publishers Weekly. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and two children.


Eva Jurczyk is a writer and librarian living in Toronto. She has written for Jezebel, The Awl, The Rumpus, and Publishers Weekly. This is her first novel.


Joseph Kanon is the Edgar Award–winning author of The Accomplice, Defectors, Leaving Berlin, Istanbul Passage, Los Alamos, The Prodigal Spy, Alibi, Stardust, and The Good German, which was made into a major motion picture starring George Clooney and Cate Blanchett.


Paul Klein is a global authority on helping businesses benefit from solving social problems. In 2001, Paul founded impakt, a B Corp that helps corporations improve their social impact on the world. Paul is also the founder of the impakt Foundation for Social Change, an organization that creates pathways to employment for vulnerable people.


Claire Kohda is a writer and musician. She writes about books for publications including The Times Literary Supplement, The Guardian, The Observer, The FT, The Economist, specializing in books from and about Japan and Korea. As a violinist, she has played with The English Chamber Orchestra, London Contemporary Orchestra and Chineke! Orchestra, with musicians including Jessie Ware, Ella Eyre, RY X, Pete Tong, Deep Purple, Paul Weller, and on various film soundtracks; she also plays the koto, a traditional Japanese zither.


Jean Hanff Korelitz is the New York Times bestselling author of the novels The Plot, You Should Have Known (which aired on HBO in October 2020 as The Undoing, starring Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, and Donald Sutherland), Admission (adapted as a film in 2013 starring Tina Fey), The Devil and Webster, The White Rose, The Sabbathday River and A Jury of Her Peers, as well as Interference Powder, a novel for children. Her company BOOKTHEWRITER hosts Pop-Up Book Groups in which small groups of readers discuss new books with their authors. She lives in New York City with her husband, Irish poet Paul Muldoon.


Danya Kukafka is the internationally bestselling author of Girl in Snow. She is a graduate of New York University's Gallatin School of Individualized Study. She works as a literary agent.


Natasha Lester worked as a marketing executive for L’Oreal before penning the New York Times and internationally bestselling novel The Paris Orphan. She is also the author of the USA Today bestseller The Paris Seamstress. When she’s not writing, she loves collecting vintage fashion, traveling, reading, practicing yoga and playing with her three children. Natasha lives in Perth, Western Australia.


Grace Li is a Chinese American writer who is currently attending medical school at Stanford University, and who looks forward to the opportunity to tell more stories of diaspora and



Emily St. John Mandel's five previous novels include The Glass Hotel and Station Eleven , which was a finalist for a National Book Award and the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction and has been translated into thirty-two languages. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.


Mesha Maren, author of Sugar Run, has contributed to Oxford American, the Guardian, Tin House, the Southern Review, and elsewhere. She was the recipient of the Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize, an Elizabeth George Foundation grant and fellowships from the MacDowell Colony and the Ucross Foundation. She is an assistant professor at Duke University and also serves as a NEA Writing Fellow at the federal prison camp in Alderson, West Virginia.


Vanessa Miller is a bestselling author, with several books appearing on Essence Magazine’s Bestseller’s List. She has also been a Black Expressions Book Club Alternate pick and #1 on BCNN/BCBC Bestsellers’ List. Vanessa has worked with numerous publishers, including Urban Christian (Kensington), Kimani (Harlequin), Abingdon Press, and Whitaker House. She is currently working on Something Good with Thomas Nelson (HarperCollins), which releases in March 2022.


Heather B. Moore is a USA Today bestselling and award-winning author of more than seventy publications including The Paper Daughters of Chinatown. She's lived on both the east and west coasts of the United States, including Hawaii, and attended school abroad including the Cairo American College in Egypt and the Anglican School of Jerusalem in Israel. She loves to learn about anything in history and, as an author, is passionate about historical research.


Sequoia Nagamatsu is a Japanese-American writer and managing editor of Psychopomp Magazine, an online quarterly dedicated to innovative prose. Originally from Hawaii and the San Francisco Bay Area, he holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Southern Illinois University and a BA in Anthropology from Grinnell College. His work has appeared in such publications as Conjunctions, The Southern Review, ZYZZYVA, Fairy Tale Review, and Tin House. He is the author of the award-winning short story collection Where We Go When All We Were Is Gone and teaches creative writing at St. Olaf College and the Rainier Writing Workshop Low-Residency MFA program. He currently lives in Minnesota with his wife, cat, and a robot dog named Calvino.


Zarqa Nawaz is a writer and filmmaker who created Little Mosque on the Prairie. Premiering on the CBC in 2007, it ran for six seasons, was watched in over sixty countries, and landed Nawaz in the public eye. When not writing, producing or directing for the show, she has spent much of the past six years writing comedy pilots for ABC, CBS, NBC, and FOX, and touring the world as a sought-after public speaker. Her memoir, Laughing All the Way to the Mosque, was published in 2014. A contributor to CBC's DNTO, Zarqa Nawaz lives in Regina, Saskatchewan, with her loving but long-suffering family.


Sarah Pekkanen is the internationally and USA Today bestselling author of eight solo novels, as well as the co-author of the New York Times bestsellers You Are Not Alone, An Anonymous Girl and The Wife Between Us. A former investigative journalist and award-winning feature writer, she has published work in The Washington Post, USA Today, and many others. She is the mother of three sons and lives just outside Washington, D.C.


Imani Perry is the Hughes-Rogers Professor of African American Studies at Princeton University where she also teaches in Gender and Sexuality Studies, Law and Public Affairs and Jazz Studies. She has a J.D. from Harvard Law School and a Ph.D in the history of American civilization from Harvard University. Perry is the author of Looking for Lorraine: The Radiant and Radical Life of Lorraine Hansberry, winner of the Bograd-Weld Biography Prize of 2019 from the Pen America Foundation. She is also the author of Breathe: A Letter to My Sons, Vexy Thing: On Gender and Liberation, and May We Forever Stand: A History of the Black National Anthem, which was a finalist for the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Nonfiction. Perry, a native of Birmingham, Alabama, who grew up in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Chicago, lives outside of Philadelphia with her two sons.


Jodi Picoult is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of twenty-seven novels, including The Book of Two Ways, A Spark of Light, Small Great Things, Leaving Time, and My Sister's Keeper, and, with daughter Samantha van Leer, two young adult novels, Between the Lines and Off the Page. Picoult lives in New Hampshire.


Nita Prose is a longtime editor, serving many bestselling authors and their books. She lives in Toronto, Canada, in a house that is only moderately clean.


Alexis Schaitkin is the author of Saint X. Her short stories have been anthologized in The Best American Short Stories and The Best American Nonrequired Reading. She received her MFA in fiction from the University of Virginia, where she was a Henry Hoyns Fellow. She lives in Williamstown, Massachusetts, with her husband and son.


Brendan Nicholaus Slocumb was born in Yuba City, California, and was raised in Fayetteville, North Carolina. He was the concertmaster for the University Symphony Orchestra at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and served as the principal violist. He has performed with numerous small chamber ensembles and in the BESK string quartet. For the past twenty-three years, he has been a public and private school music educator, and is a Nobel Educator of Distinction. He also serves as an educational consultant for the Kennedy Center and as the concertmaster for the NOVA-Annandale Symphony Orchestra.


Jason Sommer is author of five poetry collections, including most recently, Portulans in the University of Chicago’s Phoenix Poets series. He has been recognized with an Anna Davidson Rosenberg Award for poems about the Jewish experience and has read from his work at the program “Speech and Silence: Poetry and the Holocaust” at the National Holocaust Memorial Museum. He lives in St. Louis, Missouri, with his wife and son.


Thrity Umrigar is the bestselling author of eight novels, including The Space Between Us, which was a finalist for the PEN/Beyond Margins Award, as well as a memoir and three picture books. Her books have been translated into several languages and published in more than fifteen countries. She is the winner of a Lambda Literary Award and a Seth Rosenberg Award, a Distinguished Professor of English at Case Western Reserve University, and a former contributor to the  Boston Globe , the Washington Post, the New York Times and Huffington Post.



Weike Wang was born in Nanjing, China, and grew up in Australia, Canada, and the United States. She is a graduate of Harvard University, where she earned her undergraduate degree in chemistry and her doctorate in public health. Her first novel, Chemistry, received the PEN/ Hemingway Award for Debut Fiction, the Ploughshares John C. Zacharis First Book Award, and a Whiting Award. She is a “5 Under 35” honoree of the National Book Foundation and her work has appeared in The New Yorker. She currently lives in New York City.



Charmaine Wilkerson is an American writer who has lived in the Caribbean and is based in Italy. She is a former journalist and recovered marathon runner whose short stories have been published in the United States and the United Kingdom. She has won awards for her short fiction and for the indie novella How to Make a Window Snake and has participated in several residential writing programs including Hedgebrook, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Bread Loaf Conferences. Black Cake is her first novel.


Jeff Yang has been observing, exploring, and writing about the Asian American community for over thirty years. He launched one of the first Asian American national magazines, A. Magazine, in the late '90s and early 2000s, and now writes frequently for CNN, Quartz, Slate and elsewhere.  He has written/edited three books—Jackie Chan's New York Times-best-selling memoir I Am Jackie Chan: My Life in Action; Once Upon a Time in China, a history of the cinemas of Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Mainland; and Eastern Standard Time: A Guide to Asian Influence on American Culture. He lives in Los Angeles, CA.


Phil Yu is the founder and editor of the popular Asian American news and culture blog, Angry Asian Man, which has had a devoted following since 2001. His commentary has been featured and quoted in the The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, NPR, and elsewhere. He lives in Los Angeles, CA.


Yara Zgheib is the author of the critically acclaimed The Girls at 17 Swann Street, which was a People pick for best new books and received rave reviews from The New York Times Book Review, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, Booklist, and Bustle. She is a Fulbright scholar with a master’s degree in security studies from Georgetown University and a PhD in international affairs in diplomacy from Centre d’ Études Diplomatiques et Stratégiques in Paris.




Jeff Ayers has recently retired from the Seattle Public Library System.  He's a former fiction reviewer of the year for Library Journal and has written for other newspapers and magazines.  He’s the author of several works of fiction and nonfiction, and as a member of the International Thriller Writers, he is a co-executive director for ThrillerFest.

Lillian Dabney received her MLIS from the University of Washington. She works as the Adult Services Librarian (indeed the only librarian) and is in charge of Library Operations at the Seattle Athenaeum, one of three membership libraries on the West Coast. She is currently serving on the ALA Notable Awards Committee for 2021- 2022.

Luke Gorham is a reference librarian and network administrator during the day, and a film, book, and music writer during other parts of the day, serving as Editor-in-Chief of In Review Online. He also has two adorable dogs named Cricket and Artie, and a cat who's the size of a dog.

Virginia Grubbs, Assistant Head of Readers Advisory, Darien Library, CT

Barbara Hoffert, Prepub Alert Editor, LJ

Lesa Holstine is Collections Manager at the Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library, Evansville, IN. She is LJ mystery columnist and a 2018 Reviewer of the Year.

Leah Huey is an Adult Services  and Teen Librarian at the DeKalb Public Library in DeKalb, Illinois.  She holds an M.L.I.S. from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and reviews non-fiction that focuses on African American topics and issues. 

Julie Kane received her MSLIS from Simmons College and an MA in English from Lynchburg College. She works as an Associate Professor and Head of Collection Services at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia. She currently serves on the ALA Stonewall Awards – Barbara Gittings Literature Award Committee, reviews for Library Journal, and is a columnist for College and Undergraduate Libraries. You can find her and her goofball rescue Plott hound, Hobbes, on Twitter @juliekane99 and on Instagram @kanedomain.

Marianne Paterniti, Book Group Coordinator, Darien Library, CT

Lynnanne Pearson is the Patron Engagement Manager at the Skokie Public Library. She has presented at several library conferences on readers advisory, genres,  book discussions and eBooks, among other topics. She has also served on state wide committees as well as the Library Journal Best of Popular fiction subcommittee. She currently writes book reviews for both Library Journal and Booklist and was named one of 2020 Library Journal Reviewers of the Year.

Lisa Peet is the News Editor at Library Journal, and Senior Editor at the literary website Bloom (

Michael Pucci is Head of Collections and Communication for the South Orange Public Library in New Jersey. He received his BA in Journalism and Mass Communication from UNC-Chapel Hill, and his MLS from Rutgers University. He has reviewed books for Library Journal since 2012 and was LJ's Fiction Reviewer of the Year in 2015.


Stephanie Sendaula is Associate Editor, LJ Reviews








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