NORFOLK — Haystack Book Talks festival returns for its second year at the historic Norfolk Library, Oct 4-6.
Free and open to the public, the festival was founded by local book lovers with generous support from the Norfolk Foundation, the festival returns this year with a broad spectrum of talks and conversation.
New this year, the weekend-long program will kick off at 6 p.m. Oct. 4 with the Brendan Gill lecture given by Mitchell S. Jackson, author of the widely praised “Survival Math: Notes on an All-American Family.”
At 10:30 a.m. Oct. 5, the festival features three un-moderated conversations starting with Martha Saxton, author of “The Widow Washington: The Life of Mary Washington” and poet, biographer and New Yorker staff writer, Judith Thurman who will discuss the biography of female subjects from history and what kind of historical context is needed to situate these powerful figures in their time.
At 1 p.m., novelists Courtney Maum, author of the widely praised, “Costalgre and Teddy Wayne,” author of “The Love Song of Jonny Valentine” will discuss lives real and imagined and the fictionalization of true characters in their recent novels.
At 3 p.m., award-winning journalists, Janine DiGiovanni, author of “The Morning They Came for Us: Dispatches From Syria,” and Anne Garrels, author of “Naked in Baghdad,” will discuss what it takes to tell the hardest stories, how to work in a field dominated by men, and how to survive the after-effects of the job.
On Oct. 6 at 10 a.m., Ben Goldfarb, author of “Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter” and Dan Flores, author “Coyote America: A Natural and Supernatural History,” will talk about humanity’s fanatical and misguided attempts to control unruly and ecologically crucial wildlife.
Following this conversation at 12:30 p.m., historian David Blight, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning “Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom” and journalist and historian Steve Luxenberg, author of the widely praised book, “Separate: The Story of Plessy v. Ferguson and America’s Journey from Slavery to Segregation” will give a timely exploration of the fateful dynamic of idealism and betrayal that continues to shape the fundamental fabric of American society.
The festival closes with a “Talk and Walk” in the Great Mountain Forest with Goldfarb and Flores. The walk will depart at 3 p.m. from Mountain House at 200 Canaan Mountain Road.
The festival is free and open to the public but requires advance registration for seating at https://www.norfolkfoundation.net/book-talks Seating is limited. More information at: http://www.norfolkfoundation.net/book-talks; see information on planning a visit at: http://www.norfolkct.org/visiting/