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Author Susan Orlean

6:30 PM - 8:30 PM Monday, December 3, 2018

Location:
Main Library
449 Broadway
Lecture Hall
Cambridge

Event image for Author Susan Orlean

Presented in collaboration with Harvard Bookstore.

Harvard Book Store welcomes award-winning journalist and New Yorker writer Susan Orlean—author of Rin Tin Tin and The Orchid Thief—for a discussion of her latest book, The Library Book. On the morning of April 29, 1986, a fire alarm sounded in the Los Angeles Public Library. As the moments passed, the patrons and staff who had been cleared out of the building realized this was not the usual false alarm. As one fireman recounted later, “Once that first stack got going, it was Goodbye, Charlie.” The fire was disastrous: It reached 2,000 degrees and burned for more than seven hours. By the time it was extinguished, it had consumed 400,000 books and damaged 700,000 more. Investigators descended on the scene, but over thirty years later, the mystery remains: Did someone purposefully set fire to the library—and if so, who? Filled with heart, passion, and unforgettable characters, The Library Book is classic Susan Orlean, and an homage to a beloved institution that remains a vital part of the heart, mind, and soul of our country and culture.