Newburyport Literary Festival

2019 Schedule of Events

Newburyport Literary Festival 2019 Schedule:

Friday, 6:00 PM

Firehouse Center for the Arts

Opening Night Ceremony:

Our 2019 honoree is award-winning journalist and writer Elaine Weiss. In her stirring, definitive, and engrossing treatment of winning suffrage in America, The Woman’s Hour: The Great Fight to Win the Vote, she tells the story of American women’s long crusade to obtain that most basic right of democracy—the vote—and the forces of history, culture, and politics which made their quest so difficult, including the racism that came very close to defeating the cause. Weiss will be joined by Linda Hirshman, the author of Sisters in Law: How Sandra Day O'Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg Went to the Supreme Court and Changed the World, for a fascinating discussion about women, politics, and how compelling and relevant history can be.

Presenter: Elaine Weiss

Moderator: Linda Hirshman


Saturday Program:

Security Mom

9:00 AM 

Juliette Kayyem is a “Security Mom.” At once a national security expert who worked at the highest levels of government, and also a mom of three, she’s lived it all—from anthrax to lice to the BP oil spill. Weaving her personal story of marriage and motherhood into a fast-paced account of managing the nation’s most perilous disasters, Kayyem recounts the milestones that mark the path of her unpredictable, daring, funny, and ultimately relatable life.

Presenters: Juliette Kayyem


Bound for Gold

10:30 AM 

Bound for Gold features the return of modern-day treasure hunters Peter Fallon and Evangeline Carrington. This time, they are heading for San Francisco to reconstruct a Gold Rush journal that may locate an ancient river of gold. As they search grows more dangerous, the journal itself comes to life, telling a grand tale of adventure and romance, of racism and greed in the first American melting pot—Gold Rush California.

Presenter: William Martin


Visionary Women: a History, a Novel and a Memoir

1:00 PM 

Three authors tell the stories of women who forged their own way in the world, each in a different format. Andrea Barnet reintroduces readers to four icons Rachel Carson, Jane Jacobs, Jane Goodall and Alice Waters. Whitney Scharer delves into a fictionalized account of Lee Miller, a former model, from her perch in front of the camera to behind to lens. Masih Alinejad-Ghomi’s memoir outlines her own struggles within the society into which she was born. A native of Iran, Alinejad-Ghomi sparked a social-media movement, “My Stealthy Freedom,” by appearing in a photograph without her hijab.

Presenters: Masih Alinejad-Ghomi,Andrea Barnet,Whitney Scharer

Moderator: Leslie Hendrickson


Clues and the Clueless: Mystery Writers Talk About How Much Can Be Divulged—And When

2:30 PM

The Mystery Panel is always a festival favorite and this year will be no exception. The key to these novels is giving the reader enough to form theories but keeping them guessing until the end. How much can you divulge along the way? Dyke Hendrickson and our panel of award-winning and debut mystery novelists will reveal all!

Presenters: Elisabeth Elo, Edwin Hill, Hank Phillippi Ryan

Moderator: Dyke Hendrickson


Book, Line, and Sinker: How Book Lovers Get Hooked on Clubs


On Saturday night, April 27, 2019, the Newburyport Literary Festival will be honoring book clubs with a special panel event featuring selected members from local book clubs talking about the books they’ve discussed over the years.   Inspired by PBS, Great American Reads, we asked you for the books that generated the best discussion and had the greatest impact on your life.

We’ll talk about those books, your book club experiences and more. Be sure to join this interactive evening event!

Presenters: Jean Lambert, Ellie Hope McCarthy, Jana Navratil, Doris Noyes, Earle M. Ray III,

Moderator: Bethany Groff Dorau



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