Following a brief Annual Meeting, the Associates of the Boston Public Library will conduct the Hundred-Year Retroactive Book Award competition, weighing the enduring literary merits of bestsellers published in 1912. Contenders for the prize are: Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan of the Apes, which will be defended by 2012 Newbery Medal winner Jack Gantos; Zane Grey’s Riders of the Purple Sage, which will be presented by film critic Ty Burr; and Thomas Mann’s Death in Venice, which will be championed by children’s author Gregory Maguire. Novelist Stona Fitch will moderate the irreverent debate, after which the audience will vote to determine the winner of the Book Award of 1912. A reception with the panelists will follow.
Stona Fitch will moderate the debate. He is a former Literary Light; an award-winning author of powerful and disturbing novels, including Give + Take; and the founder of the renegade Concord Free Press, the world's first generosity-based publisher.
Speaking for the candidates:
Jack Gantos is a former Literary Light for Children; has written books for people of all ages; won the 2012 Newbery Medal for his book Dead End in Norvelt; and teaches at Vermont College M.F.A. program for children's book writers. Gantos will defend Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan of the Apes.
Ty Burr is a film critic for The Boston Globe; wrote three books about the greatest movies and stars of all time; and is a member of the Boston Society of Film Critics and the National Society of Film Critics. Burr will make a case for Zane Grey’s Riders of the Purple Sage.
Gregory Maguire is a former Literary Light and a former Literary Light for Children; is the co-director emeritus of Children's Literature New England, Inc.; and is the author of sixteen novels for children and eight novels for adults, including most recently Out of Oz. One of his best known titles was made into the Broadway musical, Wicked. Maguire will champion Thomas Mann’s Death in Venice.
When & Where
The Associates of the Boston Public Library
The Associates of the Boston Public Library is an independent nonprofit dedicated to conserving the Boston Public Library (BPL)’s Special Collections of rare books, manuscripts, prints and drawings, musical scores, works of art, and items of significant historic interest. The organization is committed to ensuring continued public access to these irreplaceable treasures by underwriting their cataloging, repair, restoration, digitization, and exhibition.
Over the past 43 years, the Associates has been the creator and underwriter of a wide array of programs, designed to heighten public awareness of the Library's vast free educational resources. These programs include art and architecture tours, readings, lectures, curatorial evenings, exhibitions, music events, and an annual residency for an emerging children's writer. The Associates oversees the David McCullough Conservation Fund and the William O. Taylor Art Preservation Fund.
To learn more about the Associates please see: