Please note, the list of participants is constantly being updated. Check back often for additions, changes and cancellations.

Kathryn Aalto

The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh: A Walk Through the Forest That Inspired the Hundred Acre Wood

Kathryn Aalto, author of The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh, is an American landscape designer and historian living in Exeter, England. She has masters degrees in garden history and creative nonfiction, with a particular interest in literary landscapes.

Speaker's Website Speaker's Facebook Speaker's Twitter Genre: Non-Fiction

Ayad Akhtar


Ayad Akhtar received the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in drama for Disgraced. He has also written a novel, American Dervish, two other plays, The Who & The What and The Invisible Hand, and a screenplay, The War Within, which was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay. He has received fellowships from MacDowell and Yaddo, as well as commissions from Lincoln Center Theater and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

Speaker's Website Speaker's Facebook Speaker's Twitter Genre: Fiction

Hanadi Al-Samman

Anxiety of Erasure: Trauma, Authorship, and the Diaspora in Arab Women's Writings

Hanadi Al-Samman, author of Anxiety of Erasure, is an associate professor of Arabic Language and Literature in the Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Virginia. Her research focuses on contemporary Arabic literature, diaspora, sexuality studies, and transnational feminism.

Speaker's Website Genre: Non-Fiction

Jeffery Renard Allen

Song of the Shank

Jeffery Renard Allen is the author of five books including the novel Song of the Shank, which was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award; the short story collection Holding Pattern, and two collections of poetry. He is a professor of creative writing at the University of Virginia.

Speaker's Website Genre: Fiction

Jennifer Alluisi

Jen Alluisi is the organizer of the Good Reads and Good Eats book club in Charlottesville. She is a lifelong book-lover who spends most of her free time reading at home with her husband and daughter and watching Gilmore Girls re-runs.

Speaker's Twitter Genre: Fiction

Alice Anderson

More Together: 25 Years at On Our Own of Charlottesville Sharing Peer Practices

Alice Anderson, coauthor of More Together: 25 Years at On Our Own of Charlottesville Sharing Peer Practices, is the current president of the board of directors of On Our Own of Charlottesville. She holds a Master of Divinity specializing in social change and urban ministry. She also holds an MA in Teaching and has developed and delivered curriculum in numerous adult education settings.

Speaker's Website Genre: Non-Fiction

Barbara Armacost

The Justice Calling: Where Passion Meets Perseverence

Barbara Armacost is a professor of Law at the UVa School of Law, where she has taught since 1992. She has a JD from the UVa School of Law and a Masters in Theological Studies from Regent College, University of British Columbia.

Speaker's Website Genre: Non-Fiction

Katherine Arnup

"I don't have time for this!" A Compassionate Guide to Caring for Your Parents and Yourself

Katherine Arnup, author of “I don’t have time for this!” A Compassionate Guide to Caring for Your Parents and Yourself, is a writer, hospice volunteer, and retired university professor from Ottawa, Canada. She is passionate about bringing conversations about death and dying into the public sphere.

Speaker's Website Speaker's Facebook Genre: Non-Fiction

Rick Atkinson

The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945

Rick Atkinson is the author of The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945, the final volume of his Liberation Trilogy, a narrative history of the U.S. military’s role in the liberation of Europe in World War II. Among his many awards are a 2003 Pulitzer Prize for history for the first volume, An Army At Dawn, a 1999 Pulitzer Prize for public service in journalism, and a 1982 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting in journalism.

Speaker's Website Genre: Non-Fiction

Jim Auchmutey

The Class of '65: A Student, a Divided Town, and the Long Road to Forgiveness

Jim Auchmutey, author of The Class of ’65, covered the South for almost three decades with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was twice named the Cox Newspapers Writer of the Year. He is also co-author of two cookbooks and has won a James Beard Foundation award for his food writing.

Speaker's Website Speaker's Facebook Genre: Non-Fiction