We hosted #1 New York Times bestselling author and Pulitzer Prize winner Colson Whitehead in September 2018.
SINCE 2016, the Great Authors at the Library series has brought 16 award-winning, New York Times bestselling authors to Champaign, where they have been welcomed by more than 3,000 community members.
Each author presents a public talk about their writing, signs books, and meets local readers. We set up book giveaways in advance, sharing ”Read and pass along” copies of the author’s books with community members. For authors of children’s books and teen titles, we set up school visits so that area schoolchildren can meet these literary giants. We also provide books to our partnering Champaign Unit 4 school libraries. And for the community’s youngest readers, we give out books at storytimes to help families build home libraries.
Acclaimed speakers in the Great Authors at the Library series have included New York Times bestselling authors Terry McMillan, Colson Whitehead, Lisa Scottoline, Nnedi Okorafor, Gregory Maguire, Luis Alberto Urrea, Nikki Grimes, Jamie Ford, Javaka Steptoe, Elizabeth Berg, and David Sheff.