Winter/Spring 2014 Season

Amy Thielen

PAST EVENT: Monday February 3, 2014, 7 PM, Prior Lake Library, Prior Lake

Amy Thielen, classically trained chef and host of Food Network’s “Heartland Table,” spent years cooking in some of New York City’s finest restaurants before returning home to Minnesota in 2008. Since then, she has worked as a freelance writer for publications such as the Star Tribune, Men’s Journal and Saveur, and won a James Beard journalism award in 2011. Her first cookbook, The New Midwestern Table, was released this September and served as inspiration for the “Heartland Table” which debuted the same month. A cross between memoir, travelogue and cookbook, this stunning collection of 200 recipes reveals all that she’s come to love—and learn—about the foods of her native Midwest.

Listen to Amy Thielen’s Podcast >>

Julie Kramer

PAST EVENT: Tuesday, February 11, 2014, 7 PM, Central Park Amphitheater, Woodbury

Set in the cutthroat world of television news, Julie Kramer’s alliteratively titled mystery thrillers draw from her extensive career in the industry as a news producer for NBC and CBS. Her first novel, Stalking Susan, won both a Minnesota Book Award and the 2008 RT Reviewers Choice Award for Best First Mystery. Her fourth, Killing Kate, won the Daphne du Maurier Award for Mainstream Mystery/Suspense. Kramer has also been a finalist for the Anthony, Barry, Shamus, Mary Higgins Clark, and RT Best Amateur Sleuth awards, to name just a few. Her newest title, Delivering Death, hits stores in January 2014.

Listen to Julie Kramer’s Podcast >>

Elizabeth Berg

PAST EVENT: Wednesday, February 26, 2014, 7 PM, Galaxie Library, Apple Valley

Durable Goods, Elizabeth Berg’s debut novel, earned her ALA’s coveted Best Book of the Year distinction and launched the career of one the most prolific New York Times bestselling authors of the last two decades. To date, Berg’s impressive bibliography lists more than twenty novels, including Open House, an Oprah’s Book Club selection in 2000. Berg has also penned two well-received works of nonfiction, and her writing has appeared in Ladies’ Home Journal, Redbook, and New York Times Magazine. Her newest novel, Tapestry of Fortunes, confirms her place as “one of America’s most beloved chroniclers of female friendship.” (The Chicago Tribune)

Listen to Elizabeth Berg’s Podcast >>

P.S. Duffy

PAST EVENT: Tuesday, March 11, 2014, 7 PM, Merriam Park Library, Saint Paul

P.S. Duffy’s highly praised fiction debut, The Cartographer of No Man’s Land, has been called an “astounding first novel” by Library Journal and was a Barnes and Noble Discover New Writers pick for fall 2013. Set in France and Nova Scotia during the First World War, Duffy’s alternating portrayal of a son coming of age at home while his father faces battle overseas is a soulful addition to the canon of World War I literature. With a long career in neuroscience, Duffy is the author of numerous scientific publications and now balances her work as a science writer for the Mayo Clinic with her talent for creative writing. She lives in Rochester, MN with her husband, not far from children and grandchildren.

Listen to P.S. Duffy’s Podcast >>

Dave Zirin

PAST EVENT: Wednesday, March 19, 2014, 7 PM, Southdale Library, Edina

Dave Zirin, correspondent and sports editor for The Nation, is the author, most recently, of Game Over: How Politics Has Turned the Sports World Upside Down. His newest expose, Brazil’s Dance with the Devil, turns attention on the volatile political situation in Brazil in the run-up to the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics.Named one of UTNE Reader’s “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Our World,” Zirin is a frequent guest on MSNBC, ESPN and Democracy Now! He also hosts his own weekly Sirius XM show, Edge of Sports Radio.

Listen to Dave Zirin’s Podcast >>

Brian Freeman

PAST EVENT: Monday April 7, 2014, 7 PM, Rum River Library, Anoka

Brian Freeman is Minnesota’s own master of psychological suspense. He is best known for his internationally acclaimed Jonathan Stride detective series, set in and around Duluth. His 2006 debut, Immoral, won the Macavity Award and was a finalist for the Edgar, Dagger, Anthony and Barry awards for best first novel. His second novel, Stripped, was a finalist for a Minnesota Book Award. 2011’s The Bone House was also a finalist for the Minnesota Book Award and the Audie Award (Audiobook Publishers Association). Freeman’s titles have been printed in 20 different languages and sold in 46 countries. The Cold Nowhere, due in April, is his most anticipated novel to date.

Listen to Brian Freeman’s Podcast >>

Peter Geye & Amy Greene

PAST EVENT: Tuesday, April 15, 2014, 7 PM Roseville Library, Roseville

Authors Peter Geye and Amy Greene come together for an evening of conversation about their work and the rich physical landscapes that drive their writing.

Set against the powerful lakeshore terrain of northern Minnesota, Peter Geye’s second novel, The Lighthouse Road, beautifully explores the hardship and isolation of life in a turn-of-the-century logging town. Geye, a Minnesota native, is also the author of the award-winning novel, Safe from the Sea.

Amy Greene first brought her native Appalachia to life with a spellbinding debut novel, Bloodroot, in 2010. Her highly anticipated second novel, Long Man, explores rural Tennessee in the summer of 1936, as a government-built dam is about to flood an Appalachian town to bring electricity to the area. Long Man was released February, 2014.

Listen to Peter Geye & Amy Greene’s Podcast >>

J. Courtney Sullivan

PAST EVENT: Thursday, April 17, 2014, 6:30 PM, Chanhassen Library, Chanhassen

J. Courtney Sullivan is the author of the New York Times bestselling novels Commencement, Maine, and The Engagements. Maine was named a Best Book of the Year by Time magazine, and a Washington Post Notable Book for 2011. Gloria Steinem called Commencement a “generous-hearted, brave first novel…that makes clear the feminist revolution is just beginning.” Sullivan’s writing has appeared in The New York Times Book Review, The Chicago Tribune, New York Magazine, and the New York Observer, among many others. She is a contributor to the essay anthology The Secret Currency of Love and co-editor of Click: When We Knew We Were Feminists. Her latest novel, The Engagements, a multi-generational look at marriage and commitment, is currently being adapted for a major motion picture produced by and starring Reese Witherspoon.

Listen to J. Courtney Sullivan’s Podcast >>

Amanda Coplin

PAST EVENT: Thursday, April 24, 2014, 7 PM, Stillwater Public Library, Stillwater

Amanda Coplin’s majestic debut novel, The Orchardist, was a New York Times bestseller and has garnered wide critical praise since its release in 2012. Called a “stunning accomplishment” by NPR, the story follows a solitary orchardist who provides shelter to two runaway teenage girls in the late nineteenth century Pacific Northwest. Coplin, who grew up in her grandparents’ orchards in Washington, received her MFA from the University of Minnesota and was the recipient of residencies from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and the Omi International Arts Center at Ledig House in Ghent, New York. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

Listen to Amanda Coplin’s Podcast >>