Blue Bicycle Books, Charleston, SC

Author Luncheon with Patti Callahan Henry, The Bookshop at Waters End, Thurs., July 13, 12 pm

Join us Thurs., July 13, 12 pm for lunch at High Cotton (199 East Bay St.), as Patti Callahan Henry discusses and signs her new book The Bookshop at Water’s End (Berkley, pb., 288 pp., $16). Tickets are $31 for the three-course luncheon and talk, or $45 including a signed copy of the book.

Get tickets here.

About the book: Bonny Blankenship’s most treasured memories are of idyllic summers spent in Watersend, South Carolina, with her best friend, Lainey McKay. Amid the sand dunes and oak trees draped with Spanish moss, they swam and wished for happy-ever-afters, then escaped to the local bookshop to read and whisper in the glorious cool silence. Until the night that changed everything, the night that Lainey’s mother disappeared.

Now, in her early fifties, Bonny is desperate to clear her head after a tragic mistake threatens her career as an emergency room doctor, and her marriage crumbles around her. With her troubled teenage daughter, Piper, in tow, she goes back to the beloved river house, where she is soon joined by Lainey and her two young children. During lazy summer days and magical nights, they reunite with bookshop owner Mimi, who is tangled with the past and its mysteries. As the three women cling to a fragile peace, buried secrets and long ago loves return like the tide.

About the author: Patti Callahan Henry is a New York Times bestselling author whose novels include The Idea of Love, The Stories We Tell, And Then I Found You, Coming Up for Air, The Perfect Love Song, Driftwood Summer, The Art of Keeping Secrets, Between the Tides, When Light Breaks, Where the River Runs and Losing the Moon. Short-listed for the Townsend Prize for Fiction, and nominated multiple times for the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) Book Award for Fiction, Patti is a frequent speaker at luncheons, book clubs and women’s groups.

Voices of Civil Rights Lawyers with Armand Derfner, Thurs., June 29, 6 pm

Join us Thurs., June 29, 6 pm as local lawyer Armand Derfner will talk about his pivotal role in the American Civil Rights Movement. Beginning with his work representing disenfranchised voters in Greenwood, Mississippi, in 1968, Armand was among the first lawyers to argue cases involving the Voting Rights Act. An essay based on these experiences has been included in a new book called Voices of Civil Rights Lawyers: Reflections from the Deep South 1964-1980 (University of Florida Press, hb., 440 pp., $45).

Voices of Civil Rights Lawyers offers eyewitness accounts of some of the most dramatic moments in civil rights history–the 1965 Selma March, the first civil judgment against the Ku Klux Klan, the creation of ballot access for African Americans in Alabama, and the 1968 Democratic Convention. The narratives depict attorney-client relationships extraordinary in their mutual trust and commitment to risk-taking. White and black, male and female, northern and southern, these recruits in the battle for freedom helped shape a critical chapter of American history.

Armand shaped the Voting Rights Act through his Supreme Court arguments in several of the earliest cases, including Allen v. State Board of Elections (1969) and Perkins v. Matthews (1971). He has testified before the Judiciary Committees of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives about extensions of the Voting Rights Act, as well as other pro bono legislation. With his late wife, Mary Frances Derfner, he assisted in passage of the Civil Rights Attorneys’ Fees Awards Act of 1976, as well as the Equal Access to Justice Act of 1980. For more than 20 years, he has represented litigants in two long-running suits to desegregate and end racial inequality in the higher education systems of Alabama (Knight v. Alabama) and Mississippi (Ayers v. Fordice). He is now a founding partner at Derfner and Altman, here in Charleston.

Zak Pelaccio, Project 258, Cooking Demo at Siematic, Thurs., June 8, 5 pm

Join us Thurs., June 8, 5 pm at Siematic (444 King St.), as James Beard Award winner Zak Pelaccio will be in town to prepare a dish from his new cookbook Project 258: Making Dinner at Fish and Game (University of Texas Press, hb., 348 pp., $50).

Fish & Game restaurant in Hudson, New York, is a leader in the local foods movement. Its core approach—engaging intimately with nature both wild and domestic, building relationships with farmers, and exploring the joys of fermentation—is one of interest to anyone who yearns to cook and eat better food.

Project 258: Making Dinner at Fish & Game presents an enticing selection of seasonal recipes, profiles of key producers who supply the restaurant, and a fascinating, beautifully illustrated look at the processes—both intellectual and culinary—behind the food at Fish & Game. Taking no shortcuts, Pelaccio and his staff handcraft many staple ingredients, including fish sauce, vinegars, maple syrup, and prosciutto.

Pelaccio and his wife Jori Jayne are famed for building Brooklyn’s first gastro-pub, pioneering NYC’s nose-to-tail culinary movement, urban foraging and bringing Malaysian inspired food to the national mainstream. They now live in Upstate New York.

Out of Line author Barbara Lynch in conversation Hi, Anxiety author Kat Kinsman, Sat., June 10, 5 pm

Join us Sat., June 10, 5 pm as celebrated food writer Kat Kinsman and James Beard Award winner Barbara Lynch discuss their new books Out of Line (Atria Books, hb., 240 pp., $26) and Hi, Anxiety (Dey Street Books, hb., 240 pp., $26).  Angel Postell of Home Team PR will also be joining them.

Out of Line describes Lynch’s remarkable process of self-invention, including her encounters with colorful characters of the food world, and vividly evokes the magic of creation in the kitchen. Through her story, Lynch explores how the past—both what we strive to escape from and what we remain true to—can strengthen and expand who we are.

In Hi, Anxiety, beloved food writer, editor, and commentator Kat Kinsman expands on the high profile pieces she wrote for about depression, and its wicked cousin, anxiety. As Kat found when she started to write about her struggles, she is not alone in feeling like the simple act of leaving the house can be crippling. And though periodic medication, counseling, a successful career and a happy marriage have brought her relief, the illness remains.

Barbara Lynch has won multiple James Beard Awards, including Outstanding Restaurateur (only the second woman to win), an Amelia Earhart award for success as a woman in a male-dominated field, and the Relais & Château designation of Grand Chef (one of only six in North America). She is the owner of Barbara Lynch Gruppo, which encompasses seven celebrated restaurants, including No. 9 Park, B&G Oysters, Drink, Sportello, and Menton. In 2017, she was named one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World.

Kat Kinsman is senior food and drinks editor at Time Inc.’s Extra Crispy and former editor at large and editor in chief of Tasting Table. She is a frequent public speaker on the topics of food and mental health, and addresses their connection on her website Chefs with Issues. She is a former writer and editor for, where she was nominated for the James Beard Broadcast Award in the TV Segment category and won the 2011 EPPY Best Food Website for CNN’s Eatocracy. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband and various animals.


Author Luncheon with Cate Lineberry, Be Free or Die, Fri., June 23, 12 pm

Join us Fri., June 23, 12 pm for lunch at High Cotton (199 East Bay St.), as Cate Lineberry discusses and signs her new book Be Free or Die (St. Martin’s, hb., 288 pp., $26). Cate will be in conversation with Michael Boulware Moore, who is the great, great grandson of Robert Smalls and the CEO of the International African American Museum.

Tickets are $31 for the three-course luncheon and talk, or $57 including a signed copy of the book. Get tickets here.

Be Free or Die is a compelling narrative that illuminates Robert Smalls’ amazing journey from slave to Union hero and ultimately United States Congressman. This captivating tale of a valuable figure in American history gives fascinating insight into the country’s first efforts to help newly freed slaves while also illustrating the many struggles and achievements of African Americans during the Civil War.

Be Free or Die is Cate’s second book. She is also the author of The Secret Rescue, a #1 Wall Street Journal e-book bestseller and a finalist for the Edgar and Anthony Awards. She was previously a staff writer and editor for National Geographic Magazine and the web editor for Smithsonian Magazine. Her work has also appeared in the New York Times.

Mercies in Disguise with Gina Kolata and Amanda Baxley Kalinsky, Thurs., June 22, 5 pm

Join us Thurs., June 22, 5 pm as New York Times reporter Gina Kolata discusses her new book Mercies in Disguise (St. Martin’s, hb., 272 pp., $26).

In Mercies in Disguise, Kolata tells the story of the Baxleys, an almost archetypal family in a small town in South Carolina. A proud and determined clan, many of them doctors, they are struck one by one with an inscrutable illness. They finally discover the cause of the disease after a remarkable sequence of events. Meanwhile, science, progressing for a half a century along a parallel track, had handed the Baxleys a resolution―not a cure, but a blood test that would reveal who had the gene for the disease and who did not. And science would offer another dilemma―fertility specialists had created a way to spare the children through an expensive process.

A work of narrative nonfiction, Mercies in Disguise is the story of a family that took matters into its own hands when the medical world abandoned them. It’s a story of a family that had to deal with unspeakable tragedy and yet did not allow it to tear them apart. And it is the story of a young woman―Amanda Baxley―who faced the future head on, determined to find a way to disrupt her family’s destiny.

Gina Kolata is a senior medical writer for the New York Times and the author of nine books and editor of three. She has won numerous prizes and was a Pulitzer finalist twice.

Perfect Strangers with Roseann Sdoia, Mon., June 5, 5 pm

Join us Mon., June 5, 5 pm as Boston Marathon bombing survivor Roseann Sdoia discusses her new book Perfect Strangers (PublicAffairs, hb., 256 pp., $26).

As Roseann Sdoia waited to watch her friend cross the finish line of the Boston Marathon in 2013, she had no idea her life was about to change-that in a matter of minutes she would look up from the sidewalk, burned and deaf, staring at her detached foot, screaming for help amid the smoke and blood.

In the chaos that followed, three people would enter Roseann’s life and change it forever. The first was Shores Salter, a college student who instinctively ran into the smoke while his friends ran away. He found Roseann lying on the sidewalk and, using a belt as a tourniquet, literally saved her life that day. Then, Boston police officer Shana Cottone arrived on the scene and began screaming desperately at passing ambulances, all full, before finally commandeering an empty paddy wagon. Just then a giant appeared, in the form of Boston firefighter Mike Materia, who carried Roseann and held her burned hand all the way to the hospital. Since that day, he hasn’t left her side, and today they are planning their life together.

Perfect Strangers is about recovery, about choosing joy and human connection over anger and resentment, and most of all, it’s about an unlikely but enduring friendship that grew out of the tragedy of Boston’s worst day.


Author Luncheon with Lisa Wingate, Before We Were Yours, Thurs., June 8, 12 pm

Join us Thurs., June 8, 12 pm for lunch at High Cotton (199 East Bay St.), as Lisa Wingate discusses and signs her new book Before We Were Yours (Ballantine Books, hb., 352 pp., $26). Tickets are $31 for the three-course luncheon and talk, or $57 including a signed copy of the book.

Get tickets here.

Based on one of America’s most notorious real-life scandals–in which Georgia Tann, director of a Memphis-based adoption organization, kidnapped and sold poor children to wealthy families all over the country–Lisa Wingate’s riveting, wrenching, and ultimately uplifting tale reminds us how, even though the paths we take can lead to many places, the heart never forgets where we belong.

Lisa Wingate is a former journalist, an inspirational speaker, and the bestselling author of more than twenty novels. Her work has won or been nominated for many awards, including the Pat Conroy Southern Book Prize, the Oklahoma Book Award, the Carol Award, the Christy Award, and the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award. Wingate lives in the Ouachita Mountains of southwest Arkansas.

Author Luncheon with Dorothea Benton Frank, Same Beach, Next Year, Fri., May 19, 12 pm

Join us Fri., May 19, 12 pm for lunch at Stars Rooftop and Grill Room (495 King St.), as Dottie Frank will talk about and sign her new book Same Beach, Next Year (William Morrow, hb., 384pp., $28). Tickets are $62 for the buffet luncheon plus a signed copy of the book.

Get tickets here.

Bursting with the intoxicating richness of Dorothea Benton Frank’s beloved Lowcountry—the sultry sunshine, cool ocean breezes, icy cocktails, and starry velvet skies—Same Beach, Next Year is a dazzling celebration of the intangible power of friendship, the enduring promise of summer, and the indelible bonds of love.

The novel begins with a chance meeting on the Isle of Palms that brings former sweethearts, Adam Stanley and Eve Landers together again. Their respective spouses, Eliza and Carl, fight sparks of jealousy, while striking up a deep friendship and an unexpected attraction of their own. Adam, Eliza, Eve, and Carl grow closer over time, building a friendship that will withstand financial catastrophe, family tragedy, and devastating heartbreak.

Dottie is the author of 18 novels placed in and around the Lowcountry of South Carolina. She was born and raised on Sullivan’s Island, attended Bishop England High School and graduated from General William Moultrie High School in 1969. She is the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from The College of Charleston and a Doctorate of Fine Arts from Bloomfield College. An avid cook who also enjoys fly-fishing, reading, and travel, Dottie now divides her time between South Carolina and New Jersey.


Events and Signings


Sun., Mar. 11Alwyn Hamilton Discussion with Ryan Graudin

Mon., Mar. 12 author luncheon with Caitlin Macy, Mrs.

Wed., Mar. 14 Clay Rice silhouettes

Mon., Mar. 26 Jonathan Miles, Anatomy of a Miracle

Thurs., Mar. 29 Natasha Boyd, The Indigo Girl

Wed., Apr. 4 Malinda McCollum, The Surprising Place

Thurs., Apr. 5 The Bridge Run Show

Fri., Apr. 6 — author luncheon with Holly Herrick, New Charleston Chef’s Table

Fri., Apr. 20 Charleston Animal Society luncheon with Caitlyn the Dog

Thurs., May 3 — Cinelle Barnes, Monsoon Mansion at the Charleston Library Society

Tues., May 15 — author luncheon with Dorothea Benton Frank, By Invitation Only

Sun., May 20 — Pamela Grundy, Color and Character

Sun., May 27 Piccolo Fiction