This is a free in-person event, and seating is first come, first served.
Signal Fires opens on a summer night in 1985. Three teenagers have been drinking. One of them gets behind the wheel of a car, and, in an instant, everything on Division Street changes. For the Wilf family, the circumstances of that fatal accident will become the deepest kind of secret, one so dangerous it can never be spoken. On Division Street, time has moved on. But when Waldo, the Shenkmans’ brilliant, lonely son who marvels at the beauty of the world and has a native ability to find connections in everything, befriends Dr. Wilf, past events come hurtling back in ways no one could ever have foreseen. Signal Fires is a work of haunting beauty by a masterly storyteller.
Dani Shapiro is a best-selling novelist and memoirist and host of the podcast Family Secrets (now in its sixth season). Her work has been featured in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Vogue, and Time. She has taught at Columbia and New York University and is the co-founder of the Sirenland Writers Conference. She lives in Litchfield County, Connecticut.
Shapiro will be in conversation with memoirist Jacki Lyden, an award-winning NPR host correspondent for over three decades, hosting flagship NPR shows and thousands of interviews in multiple countries, especially the Middle East. She is the author of Daughter of the Queen of Sheba, a look at living with her mother’s mental illness, a memoir the New York Times called “a classic.” (She is now her mother’s caregiver.) She is the American Psychiatric Assn. "Patient Advocate of the Year” for 2021 and a Rosalynn Carter Mental Health journalism fellow and a frequent public speaker. She a member of the National Steering Committee for Writers for Democratic Action and its Wisconsin State chair. She is a board member of the Cheuse International Writing center at George Mason University. Since 2017, she’s led writing workshops in the US and Ireland. Her new memoir is called Tell Me Something Good, and still in progress. She lives in Silver Spring, MD and Delafield, WI. She is married to Bill O’Leary, a Pulitzer-Prize winning photographer for the Washington Post.