Alachua County Library District kicks off its 2018 Author Series at Headquarters Library with St. Augustine writer Laura Lee Smith on Sunday, Jan. 7, 2:30 p.m. Smith returns to the library to speak about her new book released December 5 —The Ice House. Her latest novel follows the beleaguered MacKinnons as they weather the possible loss of the family business, a serious medical diagnosis and the slings and arrows of familial discord. It firmly establishes Smith as a gifted voice in American fiction. Smith’s first book, Heart of Palm was praised for her “intelligence, heart, wit” by Richard Russo, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Empire Falls. Her short fiction was selected by guest editor T.C. Boyle for inclusion in Best American Short Stories 2015 and by guest editor Amy Hempel for inclusion in New Stories from the South: The Year’s Best, 2010. Her work has also appeared in New England Review, The Florida Review, Natural Bridge, Bayou and other journals, and she is a frequent contributor to Swamp Radio. She works as an advertising copywriter and lives in St. Augustine.
The 2018 Author Series brings an interesting and entertaining variety of genres — contemporary western, crime thriller, mystery, historical family saga, Christian fiction – to Gainesville. Story settings include a small town in Wyoming, an African American family in North Carolina, an Asian family in Seattle, and a murder mystery in the Amish Country. Each author will speak, answer questions and be available for book signings. Copies of their books will be available for sale at the events. Library copies may be reserved at www.aclib.us. The series is a collaboration with publishers, Friends of the Library and Books-A-Million and continues at Headquarters Library, 401 E. University Avenue, (352) 334-3939, with:
Stephanie Powell Watts on Saturday, Jan. 27, 2:30 p.m.
Stephanie Powell Watts' debut novel, No One Is Coming to Save Us, was the inaugural selection by Sarah Jessica Parker for the American Library Association’s Book Club Central. The story is a powerful novel about an extended African American family and their colliding visions of the American Dream. It was named one of the best books of 2017 by Entertainment Weekly and the Chicago Review of Books. Watts won the Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence in 2012 for her book We are Taking Only what We Need a collection of 11 stories which chronicles the lives of African Americans in North Carolina. Her short fiction has been honored with a Pushcart Prize. This event is co-sponsored by the Opinionated Ladies Book Club.
Craig Johnson on Sunday, Feb. 4, 2:30 p.m.
New York Times Best Seller Craig Johnson is most famous for his very popular Longmire novels. Johnson has written 12 novels, two novellas and a collection of short stories featuring Sheriff Walt Longmire of Absaroka County, Wyoming — the least populated county in the least populous state. The stories have been adapted for a television series that was the highest-rated debut on the A&E cable channel; the series is in its sixth season on Netflix. He assures us that he will continue to write this series long after the cinematic version is in syndication.
Laura Lippman on Saturday, March 3, 2:30 p.m.
Laura Lippman’s Tess Monaghan series is one of the most popular and acclaimed crime series as are her stand-alone novels. She was a reporter for 20 years, including 12 years at The (Baltimore) Sun. Her work has been awarded the Edgar®, the Anthony, the Agatha, the Shamus, the Nero Wolfe, Gumshoe and Barry awards. Her latest novel, Sunburn, will be out February 20.
Linda Castillo on Sunday, March 18, 2:30 p.m.
Linda Castillo is the author of the New York Times bestselling Kate Burkholder series. These crime thrillers are set in Amish country. Her latest novel, Down a Dark Road, published in July 2017 is number nine in the series.
Jamie Ford on Saturday, April 14, 2:30 p.m.
Jamie Ford’s debut novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, became a best seller and favorite of book clubs, named the #1 Book Club Pick in 2009 by the American Booksellers Association. He has followed it with Songs of Willow Frost and his latest, Love and Other Consolation Prizes.
Davis Bunn on Sunday, May 20, 2:30 p.m.
Davis Bunn, international bestseller and winner of four Christy awards, will present a double feature of his two latest novels, Miramar Bay and Firefly Cove. A common theme found in Bunn's writings is that of second chances, and he provides a beautiful romantic journey through doubt and desire.
For additional information, visit www.aclib.us or call (352) 334-3939.
If a person with a disability needs an accommodation in order to participate in this event he or she is entitled, at no cost to him or her, to the provision of certain assistance. Please contact the Alachua County Library District at 352-334-3910 at least three (3) days prior to the event. TTY users please call 711 (Florida Relay Service).