Sarah Shun-lien Bynum headshotContemporary Writers Series

FALL 2010

Sarah Shun-lien Bynum

Tuesday, September 21, 2010; 7:30 p.m.
Grupp Fireside Lounge

Sarah Shun-lien Bynum is a graduate of Brown University and the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop. Her first novel, Madeleine is Sleeping, was a finalist for the National Book Award in 2004. Her fiction has appeared in The New YorkerTin HouseGeorgia Review, and The Best American Short Stories. Her second book, Ms. Hempel Chronicles, was a finalist for the Pen/Faulkner Award for fiction. She teaches writing at the University of California, San Diego. 

Web Resources

Reviews Of Ms. Hempel Chronicles:
Audio (Interviews and Readings):
Print Interviews:
Ms. Hempel Chronicles’ website
“The Erkling,” a new story:

Dennis Lehane headshot

Dennis Lehane

Thursday, October 7, 2010; 7:30 p.m.
Montante Cultural Center

Dennis Lehane was born and raised in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston.  He earned his bachelor’s degree from Eckerd College and a master’s degree in creative writing from Florida International University. He is the author of eight novels, including The New York Times bestsellers Gone, Baby GoneMystic River, and Shutter Island, as well as Coronado, a collection of short stories and a play. His most recent novel is The Given Day. He’s taught fiction writing at Harvard and is currently a member the board of the MFA program of Pine Manor College. He and his wife divide their time between Boston and the Gulf Coast of Florida. 

Web Resources

Official website 
On the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson
Lehane and Martin Scorsese on Shutter Island
Lehane on Writing
Lehane discusses The Given Day
On Mystic River
On Shutter Island, The Given Day, and writing for television
Reviews of The Given Day:


PatrPatricia Smith headshoticia Smith

Tuesday, February 8, 2011, 7:30 p.m.
Marie Maday Theatre

Patricia Smith grew up in Chicago. She is the author of five collections of poetry, including Teahouse of the Almighty, a National Poetry Series award winner and recipient of the Hurston/Wright Legacy and Paterson Poetry Prize, and Blood Dazzler, her most recent, a National Book Award finalist. She is a Pushcart Prize recipient and a record-setting slam champion who has appeared on HBO’s Def Jam Poetry and performed her work around the world, including Carnegie Hall, the Poets Stage in Stockholm, Rotterdam’s Poetry International Festival, the Aran Islands International Poetry and Prose Festival, the Sorbonne in Paris and on tour in Germany, Austria and Holland.

Web Resources

Official Website 
Reading “Get the Hell Off My Grave”
Performing with The Jeff Robinson Trio

Interview at the Hurston Wright Awards 2007
Reviews of Blood Dazzler
National Book Award Citation for Blood Dazzler

Colm Tóibín headshot

Friday, April 8, 2011, 7 p.m. (NEW DATE!)
Montante Cultural Center
Eighth Annual Hassett Reading

Colm Tóibín was born in Enniscorthy, County Wexford, Ireland, and educated at University College Dublin. He is the author of six novels, a collection of stories, and several works of nonfiction. Twice shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Tóibín won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for fiction for The Master. His most recent novel, Brooklyn, was named a Best Book of 2009 by The New Yorker, NPR, and The Times Literary Supplement, and named one a Newsweek’s “Fifty Books for Our Times” and one of The Guardian’s “Fifty Books that Defined the Decade.” Currently he lives in Dublin. 

Web Resources

“You Must Read This”: On John McGahem’s Amongst Women
Catholic Writers Series, University of Notre Dame
Warwick University Interview
Reading from Brooklyn
Reviews of Brooklyn
Biographical and Critical Overview