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.

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, EurasiaNet.org, 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 PoorMansFeast.com, 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.

 

 

Becca and the Prisoner’s Cross

Becca-Tony AbbottA follow-up to Wade and the Scorpion’s Claw finds studious language expert Becca suffering from mysterious blackouts that allow her to see the time of Copernicus, where she receives coded messages about a next relic.

Big Top Burning: The True Story of an Arsonist, a Missing Girl, and the Greatest Show on Earth

Big Top BurningOn Friday June 5th we hosted an exciting evening of history, pictures and discussion with Laura Woollett for the Book Launch of “Big Top Burning: The True Story of an Arsonist, a Missing Girl, and the Greatest Show on Earth” all about the 1944 Hartford Circus Fire. The book is written for ages 10+, but the talk and slide show was geared to ALL ages, including adults.
About the book:
Big Top Burning investigates the 1944 Hartford circus fire and invites readers to take part in a critical evaluation of the evidence

The fire broke out at 2:40 p.m. Thousands of men, women, and children were crowded under Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey’s big top watching the Flying Wallendas begin their death-defying high-wire act. Suddenly someone screamed “Fire!” and the panic began. By 2:50 the tent had burned to the ground. Not everyone had made it out alive.

With primary source documents and survivor interviews, Big Top Burning recounts the true story of the 1944 Hartford circus fire—one of the worst fire disasters in U.S. history. Its remarkable characters include: Robert Segee, the 15-year-old circus roustabout and known pyromaniac; and the Cook children, Donald, Eleanor, and Edward, who were in the audience when the circus tent caught fire. Guiding readers through the investigations of the mysteries that make this moment in history so fascinating, this book asks: Was the unidentified body of a little girl nicknamed “Little Miss 1565” Eleanor Cook? Was the fire itself an act of arson—and did Robert Segee set it? Big Top Burning combines a gripping disaster story, an ongoing detective and forensics saga, and World War II–era American history, inviting middle-grades readers to take part in a critical evaluation of the evidence and draw their own conclusions.

We have signed copies at the store.

Gregg Mangan: On This Day in Connecticut History

On this Day CT histGregg Mangan gave an author talk and sign copies of his new book, “On This Day in Connecticut History” on Saturday May 9th at 4:00p.m.

About the book:

Connecticut’s character runs much deeper than breathtaking fall foliage and quaint coastal towns. One day at a time, author Gregg Mangan chronicles fascinating episodes in state history, from the earliest European settlements to the modern era. After a lengthy debate, the state senate voted in favor of “Yankee Doodle” as the official state song on March 16, 1978. Bridgeport’s General Electric Company completed work on the bazooka on June 14, 1942. On the morning of December 4, 1891, the only four-train collision in American history occurred at the railroad station in East Thompson. Each date on the calendar holds a nugget of knowledge in this celebration of Constitution State history.

“Game of My Life New York Mets” author event with Danbury’s Michael Garry on Thursday March 5th

Game of My Life “Game of My Life New York Mets: Memorable Stories of Mets Baseball” (release date: March 3rd) by Michael Garry.

About the book:

This new addition to the Game of My Life series takes a personal look inside some of the biggest moments of the Mets’ greatest and most beloved players, from journeymen to superstars, as the Mets morphed from a dismal expansion team in 1962 to World Series Champions in 1969 and 1986 and then back to basement dwellers before meeting the Yankees in the 2000 Subway Series. Fan favorite Ron Swoboda recounts making “The Catch.” Infielder Wally Backman relives the many highs of playing on the ’86 Mets as they marched to a championship. All-Star Edgardo Alfonzo describes going six-for-six, including three home runs, in one of the most dominating offensive games in baseball history. Right-hander Bobby Jones relates his thoughts on pitching the most dominating postseason game in Mets’ history, when he threw a one-hit shutout to clinch the 2000 National League Division Series against the San Francisco Giants. Current infielder Daniel Murphy shares his thoughts on his young career with the Mets and the difficulties of playing in New York, as well as describing the best game of his young career. Author Michael Garry, a longtime Mets fan, also includes anecdotes on Tom Seaver, Mike Piazza, and David Wright, amongst others.

About the author:

Michael Garry is a business, technology, and environmental writer and editor with a thirty-year track record. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of MIT with a degree in political science, he has a passion for sports, music, writing, and politics. He lives in Danbury, Connecticut, with his wife, Maureen, and his son, Ethan. His greatest moment as a Mets fan was watching Mookie’s grounder elude Buckner in the ’86 World Series.

To order the book, click here.

Melanie Barnum’s latest book, “Psychic Abilities for Beginners: Awaken Your Intuitive Senses”

Psychic AbilitiesWe were thrilled to have Melanie Barnum return with her latest book, “Psychic Abilities for Beginners: Awaken Your Intuitive Senses” on Thursday January 22nd at 6:30.

About the book:

There’s more to this lifetime than the naked eye can see, and “Psychic Abilities for Beginners” is the perfect guide to this unseen knowledge. When you develop your psychic skills, you will increase your confidence, stimulate your potential, and expose the magnificence that is already inside you. With true stories of actual psychic events and tips and techniques for starting your intuitive journey, author Melanie Barnum will help you: Discover your psychic senses with hands-on exercises Identify your unique psychic strengths Use your intuitive abilities to manifest abundance Enhance your relationships, career, and financial situation Overcome challenges and create a life you’ll love.

About the author:

MelanieBarnumMelanie Barnum (Bethel, CT) is a psychic medium, intuitive counselor, life coach, and hypnotist who has been practicing professionally for more than fifteen years. She was a VIP Reader at Psych Out, a gathering of the nation’s foremost psychics, organized by Court TV. Barnum is also an Angelspeake Facilitator, a member of the National Guild of Hypnotists (NGH), and the International Association of Counselors and Therapists (IACT).

Michael Nethercott returns with the latest in his O’Nelligan and Plunket series!

Originally from Bethel, Michael Nethercott returned to Byrd’s Books to tell the tale in the latest installment in his O’Nelligan and Plunket series, “The Haunting Ballad: A Mystery” on Saturday October 25th at 4:00 p.m. Perfect timing for a haunting tale we say! A Great time and a wonderful read- don’t mis it.Haunting Ballad

About the book:

seance society“The Seance Society “introduced mystery lovers to Mr. O’Nelligan and Lee Plunkett, an unlikely pair of sleuths on an equally unlikely case with a supernatural twist. Having taken over his father’s PI business, Lee enlists O’Nelligan, a dapper Irishman with a flair for solving mysteries, to help catch a killer. Now, in Michael Nethercott’s “The Haunting Ballad,” this sleuthing “odd couple” are back in another witty, charming, and wonderfully written mystery, this time set in 1957 in the burgeoning music scene of New York City’s Greenwich Village. It’s the spring of 1957, and O’Nelligan and Plunkett are summoned to New York to investigate the death of a controversial folk song collector. The trail leads the pair to a diverse group of suspects including an eccentric Beat coffee house owner, a family of Irish balladeers (who may be IRA), a bluesy ex-con, a hundred-and-five-year-old Civil War drummer boy, and a self-proclaimed “ghost chanter” who sings songs that she receives from the dead. To complicate matters, there’s a handsome, smooth-talking young folk singer who Lee’s fiancee Audrey is enthralled by. And somewhere in the Bohemian swirl of the Village, a killer waits…

wwd