FiregirlBy Connecticut author Tony Abbott

“This novel may be brief, but it leaves a big impact.” —Publishers Weekly

From the moment Jessica arrives, life is never quite the same for Tom and his seventh-grade classmates. They learn that Jessica was in a fire and was badly burned, and will be attending St. Catherine’s while getting medical treatments.

The Golden Vendetta

GoldenVendettaThird in the Copernicus Legacy series
By Connecticut author Tony Abbott

Evil never takes a vacation.

It’s been two months since the Kaplan family hunted down the Serpens relic, and the malicious, conniving Galina Krause seems to have dropped off the face of the earth. But it’s only the calm before another terrible storm. She and her lackey Ebner von Braun suddenly and violently reappear in the South of France, stealing a rare sixteenth-century astronomy book that will lead the villainous Order to the next Copernicus relic.

Wade, Darrell, Lily, and Becca have no choice but to get back in the game and square off against Galina in a desperate search for an artifact said to be crafted by Leonardo da Vinci himself perhaps the strangest Guardian of all. The dangerous chase leads the Kaplans from Morocco to Monte Carlo, but along the way they uncover another layer to Galina’s sinister endgame… and there might not be enough time to stop it.

Filled with pulse-pounding action and cryptic codes, The Golden Vendetta is the third engrossing book in bestselling author Tony Abbott’s cloak-and-dagger series for young readers.

By Mouse & Frog

By Mouse and FrogBy Deborah Freedman – a Connecticut author!

A spritely read-aloud about the challenges and joys of collaboration.

Fastidious Mouse has one idea about how to tell a story. Free-spirited Frog has another. What happens when Frog crashes into Mouse’s story with some wild ideas? Chaos!…followed by the discovery that working together means being willing to compromise and that listening to one another can lead to the most beautiful stories of all.

In her best book yet, the visionary creator of Blue Chicken and The Story of Fish and Snail has crafted another subtle, clever book-about-books that’s also a delightfully entertaining story featuring adorable characters who will win readers’ hearts.

Postcards from the Highway of Life on Saturday September 12th at 4:00pm

Postcards_Cover_FinalPlease join us as we welcome Garrison Leykam as he discusses and signs his new book, Postcards from the Highway of Life on Saturday September 12th at 4:00p.m.

About the book:

Just like vintage postcards capture and share in pictures the memories of a favorite road trip, Postcards from the Highway of Life captures in words the people and places and things that have influenced author Garrison Leykam on the experiential highway of his life. Whether it’s contemplating how to handle life’s stresses through his musings about a malted milk, lamenting the lost art of letter writing or humorously recalling the potential for pressure cookers to take Sunday dinners airborne, Leykam’s Postcards from the Highway of Life is both a rich essay about baby boomer values as well as a wake-up call to preserve an entire generation’s identity. Leykam returns readers to the memory of one’s favorite diner booth where he serves a menu of life essays that will satiate even the greatest hunger for a return to basic values in today’s chaotic world. Postcards From The Highway Of Life is simple, profound wisdom served in heaping portions of nostalgia, memories and and the very stuff of what makes life meaningful.

About the author:

Garrison Leykam is an AARP card-carrying, motorcycle riding baby boomer, producer, author, stand-up comic and TV and radio host. He has been often referred to as the “the reinventor” as he lives his life in true George Plimpton-ian fashion, namely, upholding his philosophy that life should be a participatory adventure, not a spectator sport. His website is his online diner. And, like most classic roadside eateries, you never know who you might be sitting next to at the counter. On the menu are entertaining and informative podcasts, articles and profiles served-up by noted celebrities, experts and just plain everyday folks. Garrison’s online radio show, Those Diner and Motorcycle Guys, has eclipsed two million listens.

To register for this event and pre-order a copy of the book, click here.

“Garrison Leykam in his wonderful and erudite Postcards from the Highway of Life has done a beautiful capturing of America the Beautiful. His work demonstrates how this country at that time produced the Greatest Generation….”

—Ed Asner, Actor and winner of seven Emmy Awards

“Garrison Leykam sets his sights on real life, and in the process illumi- nates the process (and wonder) of living itself.”

—Christine Ohlman, the “The Beehive Queen”/Vocalist, member of the The Saturday Night Live Band

“Garrison Leykam’s essays provide windows to the past, present and fu- ture. His ‘postcards’ are a reminder that each of us is on a journey and make some interesting stops along the way. It’s equal parts parenting guide, existential call to arms, travelogue and autobiography infused with Americana, nostalgia, wisdom, and wit.”

—Dr. Ramani Durvasula, Professor of Psychology, California State University and contributor to CNN, HLN, E! Network, Bravo

“Coffee and pondering a great question in an old diner. A place where many such problems have been considered over the years. I just know that I am in good company.”

—Craig Vetter, American designer and inventor


Celebrate the paperback release of “Lincoln’s Gamble” by Todd Brewster on Wednesday September 16th at 7pm

Lincolns GamblePlease join us at Byrd’s Books on Wednesday September 16th at 7:00p.m. for an author talk and book signing of “Lincoln’s Gamble: The Tumultuous Six Months That Gave America the Emancipation Proclamation and Changed the Course of the Civil War” with Connecticut author Todd Brewster.

About the book:

On July 12, 1862, Abraham Lincoln spoke for the first time of his intention to free the slaves. On January 1, 1863, Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, doing precisely that. In between, however, was a tumultuous six months, an episode during which the sixteenth president fought bitterly with his generals, disappointed his cabinet, and sank into painful bouts of clinical depression. Most surprising, the man who would be remembered as “The Great Emancipator” did not hold firm to his belief in emancipation. He agonized over the decision and was wracked by private doubts almost to the moment when he inked the decree that would change a nation. It was a great gamble, with the future of the Union, of slavery, and of the presidency itself hanging in the balance.
In this compelling narrative, Todd Brewster focuses on this crucial time period to ask: was it through will or by accident, intention or coincidence, personal achievement or historical determinism that he freed the slaves? “Brewster brings elegant clarity to the tangle of conflicting ideologies, loyalties, and practicalities that pushed the proclamation forward” (“Publishers Weekly”), portraying the president as an imperfect man with an unshakable determination to save a country he believed in, even as the course of the Civil War remained unknown.

“A masterful psychological portrait” (George Stephanopoulos) of the most critical six months in Abraham Lincoln’s presidency, when he wrote the Emancipation Proclamation and changed the course of the Civil War.

About the author:

Todd Brewster has served as Don E. Ackerman Director of Oral History at the United States Military Academy, West Point, and is a longtime journalist who has worked as an editor for Time and Life and as senior producer for ABC News. He has written for Vanity FairTimeLifeThe Huffington PostThe Philadelphia Inquirer, The New York Times, and is the coauthor with the late Peter Jennings of the bestselling books The CenturyThe Century for Young People, and In Search of America. He lives with his wife and two sons in Ridgefield, Connecticut. Lincoln’s Gamble is his first book.

To register for this event click here.

Byrd’s Books welcomes Nan Rossiter as she joins us for a book discussion of “Nantucket” on Thursday September 24th at 7:00pm

NantucketPlease join us with New York Times bestselling author Nan Rossiter for a book discussion of her new book , “Nantucket” on Thursday September 24th at 7:00p.m

 About the book:

Over twenty-five years ago, Liam Tate and Acadia McCormick Knox fell in love. It was summer on Nantucket, and seventeen-year-old Liam knew that wealthy, college-bound Cadie was way out of league for a local boy who restored boats for a living. Yet the two became inseparable, seizing every chance to slip away in Liam’s runabout to secluded spots, far from the world that was trying to keep them apart. 

After Cadie returned home to New York and discovered she was pregnant, her parents crushed any hope of communicating with the boy she’d left behind. Unanswered letters and calls couldn’t change Liam’s heart, but over the years he’s settled into a simple, solitary life in his rambling beachfront house. Now he’s learned that Cadie is returning to Nantucket for the opening of her son’s art show. Over a weekend of revelations and poignant memories, Cadie and Liam have an opportunity to confront the difference time can make, the truths that never alter, and the bittersweet second chances that arrive just in time to steer a heart back home…

To save a spot and/or order a book, click here.

Come listen to the poetry of Sydney Eddison on October 4th at 2:00p.m.

We all know Sydney Eddison from Newtown. What you may not know is that she has written a beautiful book of poetry. Join us  to hear her read from her new book, “Where We Walk: poems rooted in the soil of New England”

where3Sydney Eddison has written six other books on gardening. She has been honored by National Garden Clubs Inc. with their Award of Excellence for 2010. For her work as a writer, gardener, and lecturer, she has also received the Connecticut Horticultural Society’s Gustav A. L. Melquist Award in 2002; the New England Wild Flower Society’s Kathryn S. Taylor Award in 2005; and in 2006, The Federated Garden Clubs of Connecticut’s Bronze Medal. Her garden has been featured in magazines and on television. A former scene designer and drama teacher, Eddison lectures widely and is a frequent contributor to Fine Gardening magazine and other publications. Sydney Eddison lives with her Jack Russell Terrier, Phoebe, in a yellow farmhouse surrounded by a 2-1/2-acre garden of her own creation in Newtown, Connecticut. Her articles have appeared in such publications as FINE GARDENING and HORTICULTURE, and she is the award-winning author of seven books on gardening, including GARDENING FOR A LIFETIME, A PASSION FOR DAYLILIES, and A PATCHWORK GARDEN. She was Grand Marshall in the Newtown Labor Day Parade in 2014. This is her first book of poetry.


Sea Turtle Rescue: All About Sea Turtles and How to Save Them

Sae TurtleInspiring young animal lovers to get up close to sea turtles and the real-life challenges they face is what Mission: Sea Turtle Rescue is all about. Kids can connect their love of animals with their passion to help save them, discovering amazing true adventure stories, gorgeous photography, hands-on activities, fascinating information, and more. This introduction to sea turtles provides in-depth information about their habitats, challenges, and successes, so that kids can take action to help save these amazing endangered creatures. Proceeds help National Geographic conservation efforts.

Timothy Kenny brings us “Far Country: Stories From Abroad and Other Places” on Sunday October 18th at 3:00p.m.

FAR COUNTRY COVERJoin us for an afternoon with Timothy Kenny, author of “Far Country: Stories From Abroad and Other Places” on Sunday October 18th at 3:00 p.m. Listen to the journeys to places all over the world.

About the book:

“Timothy Kenny’s Far Country moves from Kabul to Detroit, Azerbaijan to Kosovo, and the connecting thread is not the obvious adventure but human relationships. Each essay is a story we fall into, story after story connected through relationship and observation, from darkness to the next darkness. Kenny’s essays are not just reports from the front but a fascinating set of hard-won observations on any front, any complex of situations, that any of us might encounter.”
Trish Harris, editor Pea River Journal

About the author:

Timothy Kenny is a former USA Today foreign editor, non-profit foundation executive, Fulbright scholar and associate professor of journalism at the University of Connecticut.

In 2002-03 Kenny lived for a year in Kosovo, working as a senior media advisor and trainer for professional journalists. He established two Kosovo journalism associations, taught broadcast writing and helped develop a local Internet wire service. Kenny was director of research and news history at the Newseum, the world’s only interactive museum of news, based in Washington, D.C., and worked for 23 years as a newsman, the last 12 at USA Today.

As the national daily’s foreign editor Kenny traveled widely in Central and Eastern Europe from 1989-93, reporting from Russia and throughout the region, including Bosnia and Croatia during the early stages of the conflicts there. Kenny has filed stories from more than 40 countries, including Northern Ireland, Israel, Nicaragua, Panama, Afghanistan, the Caucasus and throughout Central Asia. He has also worked as a legislative and political reporter for United Press International and was an editor and reporter at daily and weekly newspapers in Oregon and Michigan.

Kenny taught journalism as a Fulbright Scholar in 1991-92 at the University of Bucharest, Romania, where he established the first student newspaper. He was selected by the Open Society Institute (Soros Foundation) as one of two international scholars in journalism for 2010-2011, working with the faculty at the American University of Central Asia in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. He also taught journalism during two, short-term Specialist Fulbrights, the first to Romania in summer 2005, and to Baku, Azerbaijan, in November- December 2013.

In addition to USA Today, his reporting and op-ed pieces have appeared in the Toronto Star, the Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal/Europe, the Chicago Tribune, The Christian Science Monitor, The Hartford Courant, the Providence Journal,, The American Editor, Quill, Global Journalist and the British Journalism Review, among other publications. He has co-authored scholarly magazines articles as well as a book chapter about Central Asian journalism that appears in “After the Czars and Commissars: The Press in Central Asia after Independence.”

Kenny’s narrative nonfiction has appeared in several literary magazines, including the Kenyon Review Online, The Louisville Review, The Gettysburg Review, The Green Mountains Review, Irish Pages, The Pea River Journal, The Common, The Galway Review and elsewhere. His first book, a collection of creative nonfiction entitled Far Country: Stories from Abroad and Other Places, was published in May 2015.

“Poor Man’s Feast” by Elissa Altman at LaZingara on Wednesday October 28th at 6:30p.m.!

Poor mansByrd’s Books brings New York Times bestselling author Elissa Altman to a very special author event at LaZingara Ristorante on Wednesday October 28th at 6:30p.m. The cost for the evening is $50.00 per person, which includes a farm fresh meal from LaZingara, an author talk from Elissa Altman, a signed copy of the newly released paperback edition of “Poor Man’s Feast” and a recipe card from the book to take with you. Beverage is a cash bar. This is a registration only event so be sure to save a spot early by clicking here.

About the book:

“Poor Man’s Feast: A Love Story of Comfort, Desire, and the Art of Simple Cooking”, which includes twenty-six delicious recipes—is tender and often hilarious; a story of finding sustenance and peace in a world with unlimited excess and inauthenticity. It is about finding one’s true self as our family’s influence and the relationships we build with people throughout our lives intersect with the food we put on our table. Elissa Altman’s relationship with Susan changed her relationship with food forever and shows us how all of our stories are inextricably bound up with what, and how, we feed ourselves and those we love.

“Sometimes heartbreaking, often hilarious, this is one of the finest food memoirs of recent years.”

–New York Times Book Review

About the author:

Elissa Altman was born and raised in New York to a food-phobic mother and a food fanatical father who taught her that fancy cuisine is always best. While her mother avoided and distrusted food, her father filled her childhood with dinners at every upscale culinary establishment in town, from Le Pavillion to Le Grenoille. Elissa devoted her life to all things gastronomical, even serving rare game birds at elaborate dinner parties. She learned that taller food was always fancier and better, and created towering culinary masterpieces.

Elissa Altman writes, winner of the 2012 James Beard Award for Individual Food Blog. A food and cookbook editor as well as writer, her work has appeared in Saveur and the New York Times, on Gilt Taste and the Huffington Post, and has five times been selected for inclusion in Best Food Writing. Her work will be included in Best Food Writing 2015. She is also the author of the Washington Post column, “Feeding My Mother”. She lives in Connecticut with Susan Turner and a small herd of animals.

About LaZingara Ristorante:

lazingara_with_painted_LADYImagine being in a tiny Italian village in Tuscany and walking into a beautiful restaurant on the town square. To your delight, you discover that the restaurant grows it’s own food and is THE place locals go to have dinner, celebrate events, enjoy their business lunches and share a glass of wine after work.

That is the feeling when you first arrive at La Zingara in Bethel, CT., an intimate farm to table, and very local Italian restaurant.

Grown in nearby gardens and on local farms, La Zingara’s food is meticulously, deliciously prepared by one of Connecticut’s most celebrated kitchens and served by a knowledgeable, friendly staff who know what the specials are and which of our many great wines will enhance your enjoyment of each of them.

Praised by the food media, applauded on social media and truly beloved by its many dedicated customers, La Zingara is one of Connecticut’s great restaurants.