Advanced registration is appreciated and guarantees your free seat at Live! from the Library programs.

Cheryl Dumesnil and Kim Addonizio

Wednesday, December 7, 2016 | 7:00-8:30 p.m.
Oak View Room | Walnut Creek Library – Register Now>

Prolific East Bay writers Cheryl Dumesnil and Kim Addonizio read selections from their new books. The evening discussion begins with a wine reception, and concludes with book sales and signings.

cheryl-d-and-book-coverCheryl Dumesnil is the author of two poetry collections. Her just-published Showtime at the Ministry of Lost Causes is a powerful collection of “survival songs,” those tunes people whistle to keep fears at bay and spirits awake. She writes of odes to October, air guitar, Pink Floyd, and drag queens—even a memoir on tampons. Dumesnil is also the author of In Praise of Falling, winner of the Agnes Lynch Starrett Prize. A freelance editor, writer, and writing coach, she is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post and

kim-and-book-coversKim Addonizio is the author of twelve books. Her latest, a collection of poems titled Mortal Trash, is described by the Washington Post as “a brash, irreverent look at the physical and emotional refuse produced in our self-absorbed culture.” Addonizio also recently released her laugh-out-loud memoir, Bukowsi in a Sundress: Confessions from a Writing Life, which reflects on writing, drinking, dating and more.


The Musica Vera Duo 

bailey-sherwin-newWednesday, January 11, 2017 | 7:00-8:30 p.m.
Oak View Room | Walnut Creek Library – Registration opens Dec. 7th

The Musica Vera Duo explores and performs music from contrasting cultures of the classical tradition, including transcriptions of ancient chant, dance suites, folk songs, theatrical works, and more. Incorporating history, literature, and the dramatic arts, Musica Vera presents concerts that engage the ears, minds, and hearts of its audience members.

Baroque Violist Mark Bailey is the artistic director of the American Baroque Orchestra. Additionally, he oversees Yale’s renowned collection of Historical Sound Recordings. He conducts ensembles around the world and is an active composer.

Classical guitarist Kevin Sherwin is the Associate Artistic Director of the American Baroque Orchestra and the Yale Russian chorus. He has conducted and performed across the United States and is an apprentice conductor to Bailey at Yale.

“The Designer and The Movie Star: Coco Chanel, Marlene Dietrich and the Power of Fame” with C.W. Gortner

cw-gortner-and-book-coversWednesday, February 8, 2017 | 7:00-8:30 p.m. 
Oak View Room | Walnut Creek Library – Registration opens Jan. 4th

Bestselling author C.W. Gortner presents a look at his two recent heroines in historical fiction, examining how Marlene Dietrich and Coco Chanel reacted to the changing mores of their times, the pursuit and price of fame, and their individual reactions to the perils of World War II. Marlene and Mademoiselle Chanel will be available for purchase and signing.

Gortner’s novels have enjoyed international success and have been translated into twenty-one languages, with over 400-thousand copies sold. He began writing full-time in 2012, following an eleven year career in fashion and a twelve years in the public health sector. Half-Spanish by birth and raised in southern Spain, Gortner now lives in Northern California.

“Transcending Kitty Hawk: The Real Story of Flight and its Bay Area Inception” with Craig S. Harwood

harwoodWednesday, March 8, 2017 | 7:00-8:30 p.m.
Oak View Room | Walnut Creek Library – Registration opens Feb. 9th

In Quest for Flight, Craig S. Harwood reveals the largely overlooked contributions to aviation history by California scientist and inventor John J. Montgomery. Twenty years before the Wright brothers’ powered flights at Kitty Hawk, Montgomery piloted a glider that he designed in 1883 in the first controlled flights of a heavier-than-air-craft in the Western Hemisphere.

Learn the fascinating story of how Montgomery and his team of Bay Area-based peers transformed science fiction into reality, impacted societal attitudes and inspired a generation of Americans. Books will be available for purchase and signing.  

Harwood is the great grandnephew of American aviation pioneer John J. Montgomery. He is a consulting Engineering Geologist in the Bay Area; an enthusiast of California history; author of several journal articles on the theme of aviation history; and co-author of award-winning “Quest for Flight.”

A Conversation with Kevin Smokler, Author of “Brat Pack America: A Love Letter to 80s Teen Movies”

smoklerWednesday, May 10, 2017 | 7:00-8:30 p.m.
Oak View Room | Walnut Creek Library – Registration opens April 5th

Kevin Smokler will discuss his new book, Brat Pack America,” with Diablo Magazine’s Pete Crooks. Brat Pack America pays homage to more than 40 of your favorite movies from the 1980s, including The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Pretty in Pink, Heathers and Dirty Dancing. Smokler will talk about where these movies were made, how they reflected American pop culture at the time, and why these movies continue to be so loved today.

Kevin Smokler is also the author of “Practical Classics: 50 Reasons to Reread 50 Books You Haven’t Touched Since High School.” His essays and criticism have appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle, Salon, Buzzfeed, Fast Company and NPR. He lives in San Francisco. 


Past Events 2015-16

A Conversation with T.J. Stiles, author of “Custer’s Trials: A Life on the Frontier of a New America”

November 16, 2015 



LiveLive from the Library! from the Library, produced by the Walnut Creek Library Foundation, features free public lectures, literary events, and cultural programs at the Walnut Creek and Ygnacio Valley libraries. Programming is made possible by donations to the Foundation’s Annual Fund. View past programs on our Video page.  Contra Costa TV airs past programs Sundays at 8 p.m. Visit their website for channel info.  

Thank you to our 2016 sponsors:

           Minuteman Lafayette


Visit our video page for past Live! from the Library videos.

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