With events featuring best-selling writers and highly anticipated book releases, 2017 is already shaping up nicely on the literary front, with many more events and activities yet to be announced.
The Deschutes Public Library Foundation’s popular Author! Author! program will bring three Pulitzer Prize winners and finalists to Bend in 2017 to discuss their work.
Just around the corner on Jan. 19 is writer, publisher and social and human rights activist Dave Eggers. His debut memoir, “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius,” was a 2001 Pulitzer Prize finalist. His novels “The Circle” and “A Hologram for the King” were adapted into feature films. The latter was also a finalist for the National Book Award in 2012. His latest novel, “Heroes of the Frontier,” was released in July 2016.
Next, novelist and short story author Anthony Doerr will visit Feb. 24. Doerr was a 2014 National Book Award finalist and won the 2015 Pulitzer with his novel “All the Light We Cannot See.”
Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee will wrap up the current Author! Author! series when he speaks in Bend on April 10. The physician, scientist and author won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize in the general nonfiction category for “The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer,” which was also named one of the 100 most influential books written in English since 1923 by Time magazine. His latest book, “The Gene: An Intimate History,” was released in May 2016.
All three presentations will take place at the Bend High School auditorium. Individual tickets cost $25 or $75 for preferred seating (which also includes a private reception with the author). Although tickets for all three events are still available, they are expected to sell out.
Contact: dplfoundation.org or 541-312-1027.
Look for an announcement in spring for the next Author! Author! series.
Other author events
Meet some of your favorite authors and discover new talents at local bookstores throughout the year as published writers discuss and sign copies of their latest work.
Some of the authors already on tap to give presentations in the area during 2017 are Amber Keyser, Ann Windes-Rivera, Dina Bennett, Joan MacCracken, Carolyn Wood, Bill Sullivan, Kate Dyer-Seeley, Leif Whittaker and Kathleen Dean Moore. Many more author events will be announced during the year as the details are confirmed.
Big book club
The Deschutes Public Library System will also coordinate the county’s (and the state’s) biggest book club with its annual A Novel Idea … Read Together program. A Novel Idea’s 2017 book pick is Yaa Gyasi’s “Homegoing: A Novel,” which explores the effects of slavery on eight generations of one family in the U.S. and Africa. It was a New York Times 2016 Notable Book and one of Time magazine’s top 10 novels of 2016.
Individuals and book clubs throughout the county and beyond are encouraged to read the novel and discuss it at various public events starting April 8. The program culminates in a presentation by Gyasi on May 7 at Bend High School. Additional information will be posted at dplfoundation.org as dates and details are finalized.
As collections librarians at Deschutes Public Library, Catherine Jasper and Cheryl Weems decide what will be on the library shelves — and in the electronic catalog — for the coming year. Here are just a few of their recommended reads for 2017.
• Feb. 14 — “Lincoln in the Bardo” by George Saunders. The first novel from this acclaimed essayist and short story writer.
• March 7 — “Celine” by Peter Heller. A literary thriller set in Yellowstone National Park from the author of “The Dog Stars.”
• April 25 — “Anything is Possible” by Elizabeth Strout. The 2009 Pulitzer Prize winner expands on characters from her 2016 novel, “My Name is Lucy Barton.”
• May 2 — “Into the Water” by Paula Hawkins. The sophomore release from the author of “The Girl on the Train” is another psychological thriller.
For young and teen readers:
• Feb. 28 — “Frogkisser!” by Garth Nix. The humorous adventures of a princess plagued with an unfortunate ability to break curses with a magic-assisted kiss.
• March 28 — “Strange the Dreamer” by Laini Taylor. A new epic fantasy from the Portland author of the “Daughter of Smoke & Bone” trilogy.
• April 4 — “Olivia the Spy” by Ian Falconer. The first new book in five years about this beloved pig.
• May 2 — “The Dark Prophecy: The Trials of Apollo Book Two” by Rick Riordan. The second installment in Riordan’s latest series about smart-mouthed Apollo.
• May 2 — “A Court of Wings and Ruin” by Sarah Maas. The third novel in the best-selling fantasy series that is a hit with both teens and adults.
Nurturing wordsmiths of fiction, nonfiction and poetry, the OSU-Cascades Master of Fine Arts in creative writing program will now allow students to commence the course twice per year. Applications will be accepted through Feb. 1.
The Waterston Desert Writing Prize is in its fourth year. It honors creative nonfiction writing with the desert as a subject and setting. Inspired by local author and poet Ellen Waterston’s love of Central Oregon’s High Desert, the winner will receive a $2,000 cash award and a four-week residency at PLAYA at Summer Lake. The deadline for submissions is April 1, and the winner will be announced in May. More information is available at waterstonprize.org.