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Warm Reception for Russian Winter

Daphne Kalotay captivated library audience

 

Good morning and welcome to Black Friday. Did I ever tell you I was born on Black Friday? Yes, my mother always loved a bargain.

There are plenty of bargains to be had and I hope you follow Stefanie’s recommendation and shop at the Concord Indies tomorrow and every shopping day. No need to line up at 4 a.m., outside the malls or those big box stores. The independent retailers of Concord have everything you need to fulfill your gift list. If they don’t have it, your gift recipient doesn’t need it anyway.

Author Series

We’ve had so much going on in town, I hardly had time to share the wonderful news of the Nov. 19 Thursday Author Series.

First-time novelist Daphne Kalotay gave a wonderful presentation on her 2009 book, “Russian Winter.” Daphne, who taught creative writing at Boston University, and now writes part time while teaching part time, shared how she shaped her characters and her setting, especially as she had not visited Russia until after her book went to press. Who knew the depths of the research necessary to get even the most minute details precise?

I enjoyed Daphne’s story about how she accidentally learned that Stalin (a major character in this historical fiction novel)  did not sit in the Czar box at the Bolshoi Theatre. Did you know he always had a bowl of hard-boiled eggs served to him at every performance? I’ll take ‘Theater Snacks of 20th Century Dictators’ for $1,000, Alex.

See how quickly I can get off topic. Seriously, Daphne held the audience’s attention as she discussed the many influences that inspired her to write Russian Winter. We heard stories about her family and a childhood trip to her father’s native Hungary, to name only a few. Afterwards, she graciously met with guests and signed books. Many guests in attendance had already read (and loved) “Russian Winter,” and brought their own copy for Daphne to sign. The Concord Bookshop provided paperbacks for sale.

After the last copy of Russian Winter was autographed, Daphne met with two classmates from Vassar College, Concordians who came to hear her speak: Nora Murphy, biology teacher at CCHS, who graduated with Daphne in 1992, and Shanti Steckel Cooper, a history teacher at Winchester High School, who graduated in 1993.

Many thanks to Daphne for a wonderful evening. The Thursday Author Series is sponsored by the Friends of the Concord Free Public Library.

Do you have something you would like to share? Contact me at mcb23@comcast.net or Stefanie at stefanieac@comcast.net and we will be happy to help you spread the good news.

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