2015 AViD Author Series
Making a Mark in Des Moines for 15 Years!
The Des Moines Public Library presents the 2015 AViD (Authors Visiting in Des Moines). All programs are free and open to the public. Seating is first-come, first-served. Books will be available for purchase and signing at each event.
Wednesday, April 1, 7:00 PM
Hoyt Sherman Place Theater
1501 Woodland Avenue
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
Rebecca Skloot is the author of the #1 New York Times Bestseller, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. Skloot’s debut book, took more than a decade to research and write, and instantly hit the New York Times best-seller list, where it remained for more than four years. The book was chosen as a best book of 2010 by more than sixty media outlets, including Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, O the Oprah Magazine, Los Angeles Times, National Public Radio, People Magazine, New York Times, and U.S. News and World Report; it was named The Best Book of 2010 and one of the 100 Books to Read In a Lifetime by Amazon.com, and a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers Pick.
The Immortal Life has been translated into more than twenty-five languages. It is also being made into an HBO movie produced by Oprah Winfrey and Alan Ball. Skloot is the founder and president of The Henrietta Lacks Foundation, which has been featured in the New York Times. Skloot lives in Chicago, where she is currently working on a new book about humans, animals, science, and ethics, a topic near and dear to her.
Tuesday, April 7, 7:00 PM
1000 Grand Avenue
Iowa Roots Vol. 1: Ruminations Upon a Unique land, Uncommon People
When Texas native Bill Cotton came to Iowa more than fifty years ago he never anticipated falling so deeply in love with the Hawkeye state and its people. Iowa Roots follows Cotton’s journey through Iowa as a United Methodist Minister and all the people he meets along the way.
Cotton learns the unique stories of people that make Iowa special and realizes just how remarkable the Midwest can be. From political activists to progressive farmers and everyone in between, Iowa is home to many uncommon people with stories of perseverance and hope that we can all learn from. Iowa’s landscape has also captured Bill’s heart and he shares the hustle and bustle of the city, the charm of small towns, and the beautiful escape of nature all in one place. Cotton’s first book, A Madison County Journal, is a personal reflection of his seasons of grace in Iowa. He and his wife, Jan Hill, live in Des Moines.
Friday, April 10, 7:00 PM
Central Campus School Auditorium
DMPS 1800 Grand Avenue
The Patriot Threat
History lies at the heart of every Steve Berry novel, and his newest book, The Patriot Threat, is no exception. With appearances by Franklin Roosevelt, Andrew Mellon, a curious painting that still hangs in the National Gallery of Art, and some eye-opening revelations from the one dollar bill, his newest story poses a dangerous question: What if the Federal income tax is illegal? When Berry’s popular character, Cotton Malone, is asked to track a rogue North Korean who may have acquired some top secret Treasury Department files, he is vaulted into a harrowing twenty-four hour chase that begins on the canals in Venice and ends in the remote highlands of Croatia.
Berry is the New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author of fourteen books. They have been translated into forty languages with seventeen million copies in fifty-one countries and consistently appear in the top echelon of The New York Times, USA Today, and Indie bestseller lists. Berry was born and raised in Georgia, graduating from the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University. He is a founding member of International Thriller Writers, a group of more than 2,500 thriller writers from around the world. He and his wife Elizabeth live in St. Augustine, Florida.
Monday, April 20, 7:00 PM
1000 Grand Avenue
My Name is Mary Sutter
Selected as the 2015 All Iowa Reads title, this stunning historical novel features Mary Sutter, a brilliant, headstrong midwife from Albany, New York, who dreams of becoming a surgeon. Determined to overcome the prejudices against women in medicine— and eager to run away from her recent heartbreak—Mary leaves home and travels to Washington, D.C. to help tend the legions of Civil War wounded. Under the guidance of William Stipp and James Blevens, Mary pursues her medical career in the desperately overwhelmed hospitals of the capital.
Robin Oliveira grew up just outside Albany, New York. She holds a B.A. in Russian, and studied at the Pushkin Language Institute in Moscow, Russia. She worked for many years as a Registered Nurse, specializing in Critical Care and Bone Marrow Transplant. In 2006 Robin received an M.F.A. in Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. In 2007 she was awarded the James Jones First Novel Fellowship. The book also received the 2011 Michael Shaara Prize for Excellence in Civil War Fiction and the 2010 American Historical Fiction Honorable Mention from the Langum Charitable Trust. Oliveira’s second novel, I Always Loved You, was published in 2014 and is now available in paperback. She lives near Seattle, WA with her husband, Andrew Oliveira.
Monday, May 4, 7:00 PM
2507 University Avenue
Although best known for his endearing books about dogs, Jon Katz’s newest book is a heartfelt, thoughtful, and inspiring memoir about his beloved rescue donkey, Simon, and the wondrous ways that animals make us wiser and kinder people. Katz tells the story of rescuing the neglected donkey, whose recovery was far from easy. But during the healing process, Simon revealed to Jon the true meaning of compassion, the ways in which it can transform our lives, and how it can inspire us to take great risks.
Katz's other books, providing insight to his relationships with dogs, include titles, A Second Chance Dog, Dancing Dogs, Rose in a Storm, and Izzy & Lenore. He has written on topics such as geek subculture and the controversy surrounding New York Carriage Horses. He also penned a successful series of mystery novels centered on a former Wall Street financier turned private investigator. Katz initially worked as a reporter for The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Boston Globe and The Washington Post, and later on CBS Morning News. He and his wife Maria live on Bedlam Farm, located in Cambridge, New York.
Marisa de los Santos
7:00 PM, Tuesday, May 19
1000 Grand Avenue
The Precious One
Marisa de los Santos will visit Des Moines on book tour for her captivating new novel, The Precious One, a story of friendship, family, second chances, and the redemptive power of love. Told in alternating voices, the book is an unforgettable novel of family secrets, lost love, and dangerous obsession, a captivating tale with the deep characterization, piercing emotional resonance, and heartfelt insight that are the hallmarks of Marisa de los Santos’s beloved works.
Marisa de los Santos has published three New York Times bestselling novels for adults, including Love Walked In and Belong to Me. Her husband, David Teague, is the author of the picture books Franklin's Big Dreams and Billy Hightower. Saving Lucas Biggs was their first joint venture. Married for over twenty years, Marisa and David live with their two children, Charles and Annabel, and their Yorkies, Finn and Huxley, in Wilmington, Delaware.
Tuesday, June 23, 7:00 PM
1000 Grand Avenue
Stauffer, a Des Moines native, is the author or editor of fifteen books and more than 100 articles, including two that have been national bestsellers: GIANTS: The Parallel Lives of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln and State of Jones, co-authored with Washington Post columnist Sally Jenkins, soon to be a major motion picture directed by Gary Ross. His most recent book, The Battle Hymn of the Republic, co-authored with Benjamin Soskis, was a Lincoln Prize finalist. His essays and reviews on history, culture, and art have appeared in Time, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, and Huffington Post and he has appeared on national radio and television shows, including the Diane Rehm Show and Book TV with Susan Swain. He has appeared on national radio and television shows and has lectured widely throughout the United States and Europe.
The AViD Author Series is sponsored by the Des Moines Public Library Foundation with support from:
Des Moines University
Douglas and Deborah West
Downtown Events Group
Humanities Iowa and the National Endowment for the Humanities
Cultivating Compassion: The Richard Deming Foundation
Principal Financial Group Foundation
Kelly & Brad Edmister
Catch your favorite AVID authors on the City of Des Moines YouTube channel youtube.com/cityofdesmoinesiowa or on Mediacom cable channel 7, 86 and 97-1 (still on three channels) on these dates and times.
- Mondays and Fridays: 10:30 AM
- Tuesdays and Saturdays 6:00 PM
- Wednesdays and Sundays 8:00 PM
Past AViD Authors
AViD 2012 Authors
AViD 2011 Authors
Dr. Benjamin Beck, Dr. Robert Shumaker, and Dr. Kristina R. Walkup
Patrick J. Carr [watch on youtube]
Debbie Macomber [watch on youtube]
Robert V. Morris
Rainbow Rowell [watch on youtube]
AViD 2010 Authors
Peter Bognanni [watch on youtube]
Camille Dungy [watch on youtube]
Sara Gruen [watch on youtube]
Carolyn Jessop [watch on youtube]
David Lipsky [watch on youtube]
Nick Reding [watch on youtube]
AViD 2009 Authors
Elizabeth Berg [watch on youtube]
David Ebershoff [watch on youtube]
Jane Hamilton [watch on youtube]
Marion Blumenthal Lazan [watch on youtube]
AViD 2008 Authors
AViD 2007 Authors
Mary Doria Russell
AViD 2006 Authors
Diane Mott Davidson
Barbara Robinette Moss
AViD 2005 Authors
Luis J. Rodriguez
AViD 2004 Authors
Ruth Irene Garrett
Dow Mossman and Mark Moskowitz
Susan Elizabeth Phillips
AViD 2003 Authors
Max Allan Collins
AViD 2002 Authors
AViD 2001 Authors
Barbara Robinette Moss