Library News

Concord Festival of Authors 2023

For 31 years, the Concord Festival of Authors (CFA) has celebrated the written and spoken word throughout the town of historic Concord, Massachusetts. Every October, the CFA collaboratively honors the narrative arts by featuring dozens of literary and performative programs, the majority of which are free to the public. This year's festival will run from October 20 to October 30 in locations around Concord. This year features Keynote Speaker:Jennifer De Leon, author/illustrator Chris Van Dusen, who will give the annual Leslie Riedel Memorial Lecture for Young People, the annual Breakfast with the Authors, moderated by local author and physician, Dr. Suzanne Koven, and the always popular Mystery Night, moderated by Concord' s own Kate Flora, and many more. 

The events listed below are sponsored by the Friends of the Concord Free Public Library and/or the Concord Free Public Library Corporation and will take place in the Goodwin Forum, Main Library. Free admission. [View Full Calendar] [View Festival Home Page]

Concord Festival of Authors: Keynote Speaker Jennifer De Leon, author of Borderless, Friday, October 20, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.  

Author Jennifer De Leon will kick off the 2023 Concord Festival of Authors with a discussion of her new book Borderless. Jennifer De Leon is the award-winning author of the Young Adult novels, Borderless, featured on the TODAY show, and Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From. She is also the author of White Space: Essays on Culture, Race, & Writing. She is an active speaker, presenter, and educator who loves to connect with readers of all ages. Jenn lives outside the Boston area with her husband and two sons. 

The Robbins House presents Ray Anthony Shepard, Saturday, October 21, 11:00 a.m.

Shepard discusses his new Young Adult book, A Long Time Coming A Lyrical Biography of Race in America from Ona Judge to Barack Obama. A Long Time Coming is a biography-in-verse of six impactful Black Americans from different eras, including Ona Judge, Frederick Douglass, Harriet Tubman, Ida B. Wells, Martin Luther King Jr., and Barack Obama, chronicling their diverse ways of fighting racism. Shepard uses verse to draw readers into the stories behind the facts and the sacrifices made to sustain racial progress. 

2023 Leslie Riedel Memorial Lecture for Young People featuring Chris Van Dusen, Sunday, October 22, 4:00 p.m.

Author/Illustrator Chris Van Dusen will be honored with the 11th annual Leslie Riedel Memorial Award for his impressive body of literary work for young people. The Riedel Lecture Series was created in memory of Leslie Riedel by her family and friends so that young people could meet some of their favorite authors. Past speakers of the series include children's authors/illustrators David Macaulay, Chris Van Allsburg, Jerry Pinkney, Lois Lowry, Tomie dePaola, Grace Lin, Katherine Paterson, Kate DiCamillo, Robert Sabuda and Rajani LaRocca.

Gallery Talk with Curator Anke Voss (Two Dates!), Tuesday, October 24, 12:00 p.m. & Thursday, October 26, 12:00 p.m. in the newly renovated Art Gallery of the Main Library

Join the Concord Free Public Library Curator for the William Munroe Special Collections, Anke Voss, for a tour of the Library’s 150th anniversary gallery exhibit - Connecting the Community: An Exhibition to Celebrate the 15Oth Anniversary of the Concord Free Public Library. Learn more about the history of Concord and the nation in this insightful conversation featuring special library holdings that celebrate our history, community and the power of storytelling. No Registration Required. Meet at the Main Library Circulation Desk (129 Main Street, Concord, MA). 

The Stories of Us: LIVE STORYTELLING, Wednesday, October 25, 6:45 p.m.

Like listening to in-person live storytelling on platforms like The Moth? Curious about the stories you have not yet heard in our community? Join us for THE STORIES OF US, a collaborative Inclusive Storytelling project that provides a platform to share and interpret unforgettable personal narratives. Radio Host Harry Harding of Leaderfull Life Works will introduce presenters with AMAZING stories to share, guide compassionate conversation with the audience and invite us to consider the power of our own stories. THE STORIES OF US goes beyond traditional storytelling practices to create a brave communal space to speak candidly, feel heard, listen mindfully and celebrate inclusion through myriad modes of self-expression. .

150th Anniversary Celebration with author Elizabeth Graver, Friday, October 27, 7:00 pm

Join the Concord Free Public Library Corporation for an evening with award-winning author Elizabeth Graver, in celebration of the library's 150th anniversary. Elizabeth will discuss her acclaimed new novel, Kantika (“song” in Ladino), a kaleidoscopic portrait of one family’s displacement across four countries. Kantika follows the joys and losses of Rebecca Cohen, feisty daughter of the Sephardic elite of early 20th-century Istanbul, who is forced to move to Barcelona. A haunting, inspiring meditation on the tenacity of women, this lush, lyrical novel from Elizabeth Graver celebrates the insistence on seizing beauty and grabbing hold of one’s one and only life.

Poetry From The Library with Oliver de la Paz & Jill McDonough, Sunday, October 29, 3:00 p.m.

Join a host-moderated Q & A about their recently published books. This event will be moderated by Glenn Mitchell.

Mystery Night 2023, Sunday, October 30, 7:00 p.m.

Join us for this popular annual event with mystery authors John Nardizzi, Sharon Healy Yang, and Gledé Brown Kabongo. This event will be moderated by Concord's own Kate Flora.