Fireside Reading Series & Podcast

Fireside Reading SeriesSix Weeks of Readings by the Fire

The 2018 season will be announced soon!



Wednesdays in January and February
Hamline Midway Library, 
1558 W. Minnehaha Ave.

With cookies in one hand and coffee in the other, cozy up to the fire for six weeks of free readings. Gearing up for its 24th season, the Fireside Reading Series is one of The Friends’ oldest and most popular events. The series annually highlights the work of some of Minnesota’s finest writers who have published a new work in the previous year.

Podcasts from Past Events

Fireside 2016 thumbnailsFaith Sullivan – Jan. 20, 2016
Goodnight, Mr. Wodehouse

Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse celebrates the strength and resourcefulness of independent women, the importance of community, and the transformative power of reading. Listen to the podcast >>

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Rick Shefchik – Jan. 27, 2016
Everybody’s Heard About the Bird: The True Story of 1960s Rock ‘n’ Roll in Minnesota

This behind-the-scenes, up-close-and-personal account relates how a handful of Minnesota rock bands erupted out of a small Midwest market and made it big. Listen to the podcast >>

Beth Dooley - thumbnailBeth Dooley – Feb. 3, 2016
In Winter’s Kitchen: Growing Roots and Breaking Bread in the Northern Heartland

Through In Winter’s Kitchen, Dooley shares her journey of coming to know and be an integral part of the Heartland food community. From the husband and wife who run one of the largest organic farms in the region to Native Americans harvesting wild rice, and from award-winning cheesemakers to Hmong immigrant farmers growing the best sweet potatoes in the country. Listen to the podcast >>

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Erika Lee – Feb. 10, 2016
The Making of Asian America: A History

In the past fifty years, Asian Americans have helped change the face of America and are now the fastest growing group in the United States. But as award-winning historian Erika Lee reminds us, Asian Americans also have deep roots in the country. The Making of Asian America tells the little-known history of Asian Americans and their role in American life, from the arrival of the first Asians in the Americas to the present-day. Listen to the podcast >>

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Anton Treuer – Feb. 17, 2016
Warrior Nation: A History of the Red Lake Ojibwe

Ojibwe historian and linguist Anton Treuer presents his latest work, Warrior Nation: A History of the Red Lake Ojibwe, a fascinating history which offers not only a chronicle of the Red Lake Nation but also a compelling perspective on a difficult piece of U.S. history. Listen to the podcast >>

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Catherine Madison – Feb. 24, 2016
The War Came Home with Him

The War Came Home with Him, tells the stories of two survivors of one man’s war: a father who withstood a prison camp’s unspeakable inhumanity and a daughter who withstood the residual cruelty that came home with him. Listen to the podcast >>



Marlon James – Jan 21, 2015

Novelist Marlon James kicks off the series with a reading from his new book, A Brief History of Seven Killings, which won the 2015 Man Booker Prize. Listen to the podcast >>

Swanson-StolenWilliam Swanson – Jan 28, 2015

Stolen from the Garden William Swanson joins the series to discuss his new book, Stolen from the Garden, the thrilling true crime story of the 1972 abduction of Virginia Piper, one of the largest kidnap-for-ransom cases in the history of the FBI. Listen to the podcast >>



Ping-and-LefesteyWang Ping and Jim Lenfestey – Feb 4, 2015

Ten Thousand Waves and The Cave Wang Ping and James Lenfestey return to the Fireside Series for an exploration of China through poetry and prose. Listen to the podcast >>


Lorna-LandvikLorna Landvik – Feb 11, 2015

Best to Laugh Writer and comedian Lorna Landvik joins the series to read from her new novel, Best to Laugh, which follows her latest irresistible character, Candy Pekkala, from Minnesota to Hollywood as she pursues her dream of becoming a comedian. Listen to the podcast >>


EskensAllen Eskens – Feb 18, 2015

 The Life We Bury Author Allen Eskens adds some literary chills to the series when he reads from his twisting and evocative mystery The Life We Bury, called a “masterful debut” in a starred review by Publisher’s Weekly. Listen to the podcast >>



Linda-LeGardeLinda LeGarde Grover – Feb 25, 2015

The Road Back to Sweetgrass Linda LeGarde Grover closes the series by sharing her powerful debut novel of love, hardship, and family bonds: The Road Back to Sweetgrass. Listen to the podcast >>