The Magic of Libraries
Friday, October 14, 6:30 PM
Embassy Suites, Downtown Des Moines (101 East Locust Street)
This year, we will honor three outstanding Iowa Authors at the event:
- Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Art Cullen (featured in conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Michael Gartner)
- New York Times bestselling author Heather Gudenkauf
- Emerging author and magician Nate Staniforth.
In addition to celebrating our authors, we will also be recognizing recently retired Foundation director Dory Briles as our Friend of Literacy.
The evening will include a special announcement honoring the legacies of former Des Moines Public Library directors Elaine Estes and Forrest Spaulding.
Our 2022 Iowa Author Awards Dinner offers you the opportunity to support the library and participate in an evening celebrating the Magic of Libraries.
Art Cullen is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, editor of The Storm Lake Times (a family-run weekly newspaper in small-town Iowa), and author of the 2018, Storm Lake: A Chronicle of Change, Resilience, and Hope from a Heartland Newspaper.
Art has made it his life’s work to ask the big questions, speak truth to power, and share the struggles and successes of his unique community of Storm Lake, Iowa (Census pop. 10,076). His book is part cultural history, part memoir — it explores the themes of family, community, immigration and diversity, the meaning of home, and the Heartland’s turbulent history and promising progressive future.
Heather Gudenkauf is the Edgar Award nominated, New York Times & USA Today bestselling author of nine novels. Her debut novel, The Weight of Silence, was an instant NYT bestseller and remained on the list for 22 weeks. The Overnight Guest, published in January 2022, is a USA Today, Publishers Weekly, and New York Times bestseller. Gudenkauf’s critically acclaimed novels have been published in over 20 countries. She lives in Iowa with her family.
At the age of three, her family moved to Iowa, where she grew up. Having been born with a profound unilateral hearing loss, she tended to use books as a retreat. Heather became a voracious reader and the seed of becoming a writer was planted.
Nate Staniforth is a professional magician who hosted Breaking Magic on the Discovery Channel, a YouTube creator, and a TEDx speaker. His book is titled Here Is Real Magic: A Magician's Search for Wonder in the Modern World. Speaking of the book he said, “Good magic isn’t about deception. It’s about trying to see things the way we saw them before they became ordinary.”
Staniforth grew up in Ames, Iowa where he read about magic in the stacks of the Ames Pubic Library. Staniforth is working on his second book.