Events in the next month

Title:Celebration of Local Novelists
Date:Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:M.P. Barker
Location:Coolidge Museum
Categories:Author Event, Local History/Local Novelists Reading and Lecture Series, One-Time Events


First Wednesday of each month, unless otherwise stated

D. Dina Friedman is the author of Escaping Into the Night, (Simon & Schuster, 2006), and Playing Dad's Song (Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 2006). Her awards include: New York  Public Library  Best Books for the Teen Age;  Association of Jewish Libraries Notable Book for Older Readers, and the Bank Street College of Education, Best Books for Children. She has also published poetry and fiction in numerous literary journals and received two Pushcart Prize nominations. Dina teaches at the University of Massachusetts/Amherst. Website:

Karen Shepard is a Chinese-American born and raised in New York City.  She is the author of four novels, An Empire of Women, The Bad Boy’s Wife, Don’t I Know You?, and The Celestials, which was short-listed for the Massachusetts Book Award and the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing. Her short fiction has been published in The Atlantic Monthly, Tin House, One Story, and Ploughshares, among others. Her nonfiction has appeared in More, Self, USA Today, and The Boston Globe, among others. She teaches writing and literature at Williams College in Williamstown, MA, where she lives with her husband, novelist Jim Shepard, and their three children. Website:

Suzanne Strempek Shea is the author of five novels: Selling the Lite of Heaven, Hoopi Shoopi Donna, Lily of the Valley, Around Again, and Becoming Finola, published by Washington Square Press. She has also written three memoirs, Songs From a Lead-lined Room: Notes - High and Low - From My Journey Through Breast Cancer and Radiation; Shelf Life: Romance, Mystery, Drama and Other Page-Turning Adventures From a Year in a Bookstore; and Sundays in America: A Yearlong Road Trip in Search of Christian Faith, all published by Beacon Press. She co-wrote 140 Years of Providential Care: The Sisters of Providence of Holyoke, Massachusetts with her husband, Tom Shea, and with author/historian Michele P. Barker. This is Paradise, a book about Mags Riordan, founder of the Billy Riordan Memorial Clinic in the African nation of Malawi, was published in April by PFP Publishing. Her sixth novel, Make a Wish But Not for Money, about a palm reader in a dead mall, will be published by PFP Publishing on Oct. 5, 2014. Website:

M. P. Barker is a time traveler—well, actually an author, archivist and historical consultant, which amounts to the same thing. She got a firsthand taste (sometimes literally!) of 19th-century New England rural life when she was a costumed historical interpreter at Old Sturbridge Village. There she milked cows, mucked out barns, and found inspiration for her historical novels A Difficult Boy (Holiday House, 2008) and Mending Horses (Holiday House, 2014). She also worked as an archivist for the Springfield History Museums, where she enjoyed a unique opportunity to read other people's diaries and letters and look through their photo albums. Other work includes Images of America: Chicopee (Arcadia Publishing, 1998) and 149 Years of Providential Care: The Sisters of Providence of Holyoke, Massachusetts (co-written with Suzanne Strempek Shea and Tom Shea). Website: