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Jeff Sharlet & Ivy Pochoda :: Canaan Meetinghouse Reading Series

This Brilliant DarknessJ SharletJeff Sharlet will read from his recent book, This Brilliant Darkness: A Book of Strangers, in which he combines image and text to chronicle the lives of people living on the social margins. "Gorgeous," says The New York Times, "[t]he book ingeniously reminds us that all of our lives — our struggles, desires, grief — happen concurrently with everyone else’s, and this awareness helps dissolve the boundaries between us." 

Renowned for his writings on American religion, he exposed the role of a powerful secret Washington, DC religious/political organization in The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power, the basis for a 2019 Netflix documentary series. Sharlet's other books include Sweet Heaven When I Die, C Street, and, with Peter Manseau, Killing the Buddha. His writing on Russia's anti-LGBTQ crusade earned the National Magazine Award for Reporting, and his writing on anti-LGBTQ campaigns in Uganda earned the Molly Ivins Prize and the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission's Outspoken Award.

These WomenIvy Pochoda will read from her fourth novel, These Women, awarded New York Times 2020 Thriller of the Year; a finalist for the Edgar Award for best mystery fiction of 2020, and for the LA Times award for mystery fiction. Her earlier novel, Wonder Valley, was chosen as one of the best books of 2017 by NPR and the LA Times, and book of the month by Oprah and Vanity Fair. It was a finalist for the Grand Prix de Litterature Americaine in France. Visitation Street, her second novel, received the French Page America Prize. 

Under the pen name, Ivy Claire, Pochoda collaborated with the late Kobe Bryant to create a middle grade book series, Epoca, that marries sports and adventure. The first in the series, Epoca: The Tree of Ecrof, was a number 1 New York Times Bestseller. 

Pochoda teaches creative writing at the Studio 526 Skid Row, Los Angeles. 


meetinghouseCanaan Meetinghouse Reading Series 
Summer 2021
Moderator: Phil Pochoda

New this summer:
+ The readings will start at 7:00, not 7:30.
+ Face masks and social distancing required. 
+ Inside occupancy will be limited to 100 people (50% of capacity).
+ Audio speakers will be set up outside so any overflow crowd, and those who prefer, may sit on blankets or lawn chairs outside. 

The speakers scheduled to participate during last year’s canceled series were all invited back for 2021. Nearly all are able to participate this summer!

The Meetinghouse Readings in Canaan, held at 7:00 pm on four Thursday evenings in July are free and open to the public; no reservations needed.  (Please, no infants, toddlers or squirmers.)

The sponsors include James Laffan, Esq., Caldwell Estate Planning, Wachovia Securities, and Mascoma Savings Bank. The Norwich Bookstore will be on hand to sell current and past books by each author. Many of the books can also be purchased at the bookstore in advance, to be signed by the authors at the event.

The 1793 Meetinghouse in Canaan, N.H.’s Historic District, is located opposite the beach on Canaan Street Lake. Take Route 4 to the blinking light in Canaan; 2 miles up Canaan Street to the Old Meetinghouse. For more information, visit or call the Canaan Town Library (603) 523-9650

Event date: 
Thursday, July 29, 2021 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
Meeting House
Canaan, NH
This Brilliant Darkness: A Book of Strangers By Jeff Sharlet Cover Image
ISBN: 9781324003205
Availability: Usually Available in 2-10 Business Days
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - February 11th, 2020

A visionary work of radical empathy.

Known for immersion journalism that is more immersed than most people are willing to go, and for a prose style that is somehow both fierce and soulful, Jeff Sharlet dives deep into the darkness around us and awaiting us.

These Women: A Novel By Ivy Pochoda Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062656391
Availability: On Our Shelves Now (call to confirm availability)
Published: Ecco - April 13th, 2021



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