Montclair Public Library Foundation Awarded Grant for Open Book/Open Mind!

The Montclair Public Library Foundation has been awarded a $5,000 grant from Investors Foundation that will support the Open Book/Open Mind conversation series. The Montclair Public Library Foundation had applied for the grant from the Investors Foundation, which supports non-profit organizations that enrich the diverse communities served by Investors Bank. Investors Bank representatives, Lisa Van Dine and Alicia Robinson presented Peter Coyl, Montclair Public Library Director, and Anita Peterson, MPL Foundation Manager, with a check for $5,000.

Open Book/Open Mind aims to expand Montclair’s intellectual horizons by bringing speakers who can explore in-depth timely topics. The series, now in its fourth year, presents conversations on a wide variety of topics and genres, from fiction to journalism, through discussions and presentations by thought leaders and authors who are leading writers in their fields. Since the series’ inception in January 2015, 30 conversations have taken place.

Coming this fall, the Open Book/Open Mind series will present five dynamic and timely conversations to the Montclair community.

Nathan Englander will speak on his novel “Dinner at the Center of the Earth.” Nathan is a Pulitzer finalist and best-selling author of “For the Relief of Unbearable Urges.” His new novel is a political thriller that unfolds in the highly charged territory of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and pivots on the complex relationship between a secret prisoner and his guard.

Tayari Jones will speak on her best-selling novel An American Marriage, Oprah’s 2018 Book Pick! Next is BA Shapiro, author of The Muralist, who will discuss her new fiction novel The Collector’s Apprentice, with best-selling author Caroline Leavitt.

Chip McGrath, writer at large at The New York Times, and former editor of The New York Times Book Review will moderate a discussion on how the NYT Book Review works; how as an editor you choose which books are to be reviewed, and not; how you choose book critics, and the issues surrounding the job. Dwight Garner, critic from the NY Times and Joan Acocella of The New Yorker will be panelists.

The fall series will conclude with Alex Wagner of Showtimes, “The Circus.” She will be speaking about her book, FutureFace. In this memoir, Alex travels the globe to solve the mystery of her ancestry, confronting the question at the heart of the American experience of immigration, race, and identity.

All the events include a reading, conversation and Q & A followed by a book signing. Registration is available at

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