FAU, Palm Beach Book Festival bring ‘New York Times’ best-selling authors to Boca


Staff report

Voracious readers may be able to hear from their favorite authors during the sixth annual Palm Beach Book Festival.

The event brings New York Times bestselling authors to Florida Atlantic University for a day of panels.

This year’s event will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on March 21 at FAU’s University Theatre.

The first panel will start at 10 a.m. and is titled “Twisted History: Larry Loftis in conversation with Louis Bayard.

Loftis is the USA TODAY and international bestselling author of the nonfiction spy thrillers “Code Name: Lise—The True Story of the Woman Who Became WWII’s Most Highly Decorated Spy” and “Into the Lion’s Mouth: The True Story of Dusko Popov—World War II Spy, Patriot, and the Real-Life Inspiration for James Bond,” which have been translated into multiple languages and published around the world. His third nonfiction spy thriller, “The Princess Spy,” will hit bookstores in March 2021. Prior to becoming a full-time writer, Loftis was a corporate attorney and adjunct professor of law.


The second panel, which starts at 11 a.m., is titled “You Don’t Have to be Jewish (to love this panel).” Patricia Marx, in conversation with Cathleen Schine, will talk about Jewish mothers, spouses and siblings. Marx has been contributing to The New Yorker since 1989. She is a former writer for “Saturday Night Live” and “Rugrats,” and is the author of several books. Marx was the first woman elected to the Harvard Lampoon. She has taught screenwriting and humor writing at Princeton, New York University, and Stonybrook University and she was the recipient of a 2015 Guggenheim Fellowship.

“The Grammarians” is Cathleen Schine’s 11th novel. Often compared to Nora Ephron, Nancy Mitford, and Jane Austen, Schine is one of our great comic novelists. Her much-loved novels include “The Love Letter,” “Alice in Bed,” “Rameau’s Niece,” “The Three Weissmanns of Westport,” and “They May Not Mean To, But They Do.”

At 12:10 p.m., the Oprah Book Club panelists Leigh Haber (O Magazine), Jeanne Cummins, Kate Elizabeth Russell, and Liz Moore will address the social issues of immigration, #MeToo and the opioid epidemic. Russell was born and raised in eastern Maine. She holds a Ph.D. in creative writing from the University of Kansas and an M.F.A. from Indiana University.  Her work has appeared in Hayden’s Ferry Review, Mid-American Review, and Quarterly West, among other literary journals. She currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin. This is her first novel, hailed by Stephen King as “a well-constructed package of dynamite.”

Cummins three books include “The Outside Boy,” “The Crooked Branch,” and the bestselling memoir “A Rip in Heaven.” Her upcoming novel “American Dirt” is one of the most anticipated books of 2020 and has already been sold as an adaptation for a motion picture.

Following a lunch break, the 2 p.m. panel titled New York Times: #RealFakeNews (Politics, Trump and the Future of News) will feature Mark Thompson in Conversation with Joy-Anne Reid and David Kogan.

Tickets for the full day are $75, and individual panel tickets are $20 and $25, and can be purchased at fauevents.com or by calling 561-297-6124. Free parking is included with admission, and lunch will be for sale at the event.