Wearing a mask while inside the Theater for this event is optional.
Three NYT best selling novelists with new books share what it means to find the light: whether it’s through a luminous history and heritage, a shining new vision of an ancient text, or the brilliance of better angels. In The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois by Honorée Fannone Jeffers, a woman navigates colorism and class, and the line of double-consciousness. Vaishnavi Patel reimagines a queen in the same-titled novel Kaikeyi, a feminist retelling of the Ramayana’s villainous stepmother. Matthew Quick’s newest book, We Are the Light, is a story of a man who finds friendship, hope, and feathers on his bed from the wings of his dead wife.
Sponsored by Dominion Energy
Honorée Fanonne Jeffers
Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, author of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction winner The Love Songs of W.E.B. DuBois, and poetry collection The Age of Phillis–both longlisted for the National Book Award–teaches at The University of Oklahoma.
Matthew Quick, author of We Are the Light, is an award-winning literary fiction and young adult fiction writer. His works promote dialogue on tough issues, particularly mental health, and through his ability to portray the ubiquitous human nature in us all, he is able to reach a variety of readers.
Vaishnavi Patel is a lawyer specializing in civil rights. She likes to write at the intersection of Indian myth, feminism, and anticolonialism. She grew up in and around Chicago and, in her spare time, enjoys activities that are almost stereotypically Midwestern: knitting, ice-skating, drinking hot chocolate, and making hotdish.
Kalela Williams began as the Director of the Virginia Center for the Book in October of 2022, after serving in other literary public programming roles with the Free Library of Philadelphia and James Madison University’s Furious Flower Poetry Center. Her YA novel, The Tangleroot Papers, is forthcoming from Macmillan’s Feiwel & Friends in 2024.