A bestselling author, who wrote the true tale of America’s unlikely heroes at Olympic Games under the Nazis, will give a free talk as the highlight of New Castle County Reads 2016.
Daniel James Brown – whose “The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics” has been a New York Times bestseller since its 2013 publication – will be guest of honor at a program Wednesday, April 20, at the Chase Center on the Riverfront at 815 Justison St., Wilmington. The event starts at 7 p.m. and ends with a book signing.
“It’s not too late to get the book, now at any of our county libraries,” said County Executive Thomas P. Gordon, who is counting himself among its readers who are excited about the author’s visit. More than 50 book clubs also are participating in this year’s adventure with New Castle County Reads, begun in 2005.
The event culminates New Castle County Libraries’ annual reading program sponsored by the county Department of Community Services and its General Manager Sophia Hanson to raise awareness of county library services, encourage reading and provide free programs for annually selected books’ readers including discussions for all ages. Publishers Weekly called this year’s selected nonfiction book the “nautical version of ‘Chariots of Fire.’”
It tells the Cinderella story of working-class kids on University of Washington’s rowing team, as they rise from obscurity during the Great Depression to represent the United States at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin during the rise of Adolf Hitler.
Among related events – all with free, public registration at libraries’ reference desks -- are a 2-4p.m. discussion Sunday, March 13, at Hockessin Library, 1023 Valley Road, with Wilmington Rowing Club members about the history and evolution of rowing for fun and competition. At the same library , 7-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 15, and Wednesday, March 16, readers may join a group discussion of the book. Another discussion will be 6:45-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 29, at the Delaware City Library at Fifth and Bayard streets. See more information about the program at www.nccdelib.org.
Brown, a Seattle-area resident with a website at www.danieljamesbrown.com, also wrote two other historical non-fiction books -- “Under a Flaming Sky: The Great Hinckley Firestorm of 1894” and “The Indifferent Stars Above: The Harrowing Saga of a Donner Party Bride.”