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Bob Maxey

Ask the author at 'Books on the Lake'


April 10, 2014
Where do authors find their inspiration?

How are characters developed? The plot line?

How is the story's location chosen?

A chat with nationally known authors of adult and children's books provide answers during the Grosse Pointe Library Foundation's Books on the Lake Saturday, May 10, event at the Grosse Pointe War Memorial.


Dennis Lehane, who has written for the HBO series "The Wire" and had at least two books turned into movies, will be in Grosse Pointe for two events, along with local author Gloria Whelan. The two appear from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 9, at the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club. Tickets cost $100 and include hors d'oeuvres and an open bar. During dessert, the two are available for book signings.

During the Saturday event, Hope College professor Rhoda Janzen joins Whelan and Lehane. Janzen has written "Does This Church Make Me Look Fat: A Mennonite Finds Faith, Meets Mr. Right, and Solves Her Lady Problems" and "Mennonite in a Little Black Dress: A Memoir of Going Home."

"We're thrilled to host Books on the Lake," said Jennifer Bingaman, the foundation's director, "and we're so grateful for the support of Wayne County Community College District and Great Lakes VIP Travel. It is so exciting to have world-class authors come right to our doorsteps. Books on the Lake gives us the opportunity to ask those burning questions about your favorite books or gain insight about the author's writing process. All in all, it's a pretty unique way to spend an afternoon."

In addition to the two author events, a raffle for a weekend for two in Chicago is being offered by the travel company. Some 200 tickets are being sold at $100. The trip will be customized to the winner, who need not be present to win. It includes transportation for two on a semi-private jet, a car service, two nights in a luxury hotel, dinner for two at one of Chicago's top restaurants and two tickets to an event of the winner's choice.

It's been seven years since the last Books on the Lake gathering, which had been eliminated due to budget cuts.

"If the community embraces this, we will be happy to continue it," Bingaman said.

She also mentioned Whelan recently published an adult book, "Living Together: Short Stories and a Novella." She also has written "In Andal's House," a juvenile book, and children's book, "Smudge and the Book of Mistakes: A Christmas Story," among others.

"This is a wonderful opportunity to interact with world-class authors. I can see them coming to Detroit," Bingaman said, "but to come to Grosse Pointe is phenomenal."

Books on the Lake is sponsored by WC3 and Great Lakes VIP Travel. Proceeds benefit the library.

Tickets for either the raffle or event attendance can be purchased at Central Library, 10 Kercheval, Grosse Pointe Farms or online at book

sonthelake.gplf.org or by calling the foundation office at (313) 640-4683. A two-day ticket including the Friday author reception, Saturday's lunch, readings and question and answer with the authors costs $130.

The Friday-only ticket costs $100 and the Saturday-only ticket costs $35.


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