January 21

BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times…

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“You cannot open a book without learning something.” Confucius

BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times...
BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times… Front Cover
BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times... Back Cover  close up
BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times… Back Cover close up

Last week, I attended a Times Premier subscriber exclusive event. It was a book launch and a conversation with Pamela Paul, editor of The New York Times Book Review, along with authors  Mary Higgins Clark, Francine Prose and Andrew Solomon. The event was an informal launch for BY THE BOOK: Writers on Literature and the Literary Life.  The book  is a compilation of uncut Question and Answer interviews conducted by Pamela Paul, over the years, for the Sunday New York Times Book Review section; specifically for the weekly  By The Book segment.  The interviews are varied and engaging, and feature 65 well known writers and notables of other disciplines.

Each interviewee is asked a series of questions that give us glimpses into their inner lives, their work, interests, inspiration, irritants and literary recommendations.  Even though the book is 314 pages, it’s a delightful and easy read; some of the interviews will surprise you, while others will give you much to contemplate. Since, I want to encourage you to get the book and read it, I won’t offer any spoilers. However, I can assure you that each of the authors, listed on the book’s back cover above, will entertain you and teach you something new. I have my favorites but I’ll save that for another day.

Enlightening. Insightful. Genuinely Fascinating.  These are the adjectives that I would use to describe Pamela Paul’s  fantastic new book. So go “Buy the book!”

More Below!

“There’s so much more to a book than just the reading.” Maurice Sendak

BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times... Back Cover
BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times… Back Cover
BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times... Mary Higgins Clark signing my copy.
BY THE BOOK: An Evening At The New York Times… Mary Higgins Clark signing my copy.

What I enjoyed about the evening was the informal way the  authors discussed their writing interests, their observations about the process, and other literary matters. There was quite a bit of laughter about the world of writing, books, critics and readers. It was a joy to listen to Mary Higgins Clark share some of her experiences with the  audience; she is funny, wise and very generous with her advice. Towards the end of the event, the audience asked a few pertinent questions and, to wrap up, we all stood up and applauded. Each of us received a signed copy of the book and then we all headed off, signed copies in hand, to enjoy the cocktail hour.  According to one the elegantly dressed waiters, the fabulous food was catered by either Fallier International Food Design and Catering or International Caterers of Distinction.

The waiters, all dressed in elegant Nehru jackets and dark pants, served us the most exquisite hors d’oeuvres. My friend, Yvette, and I chatted with a few other attendees and had a great time sampling the food. At one point, I got up and went over to thank Mary Higgins Clark who had just walked into the room. She was so gracious that she even agreed to sign my copy of the book and pose for a picture with me. It was a wonderful evening and I invite you to take out a Times Premier subscription to the New York Times as they have lots of events planned for the rest of the year. If that is not within your means, you can take out a General Digital subscription or an Educator rate subscription. You won’t regret it.

Positive Motivation Tip: In By The Book, each author shares aspects of his/her life that are insightful and illuminating to the rest of us. Read. Enjoy!

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All photos from my personal collection.

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet



books, By The Book, inspiration, Interviews, Musings, NYTimes Book Review, Pamela Paul, postaday, reflections, Times Premier, writing

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  • Great to know you had a chance to attend Times Premier subscriber exclusive event for a book launch. With questions that give a glimpse of inner life, I think the interview should have been fun as well. Thanks for sharing.

  • My husband would LOVE that book. He loves stuff like this and I think this might be perfect for him for Father’s Day!

  • This sounds like an amazing event. I’m an avid reader, and I always love getting a peek at what makes an author tick, no matter what they write.

  • This looks like a really cool book(: I love the books that interview people so you can see how that person really lives or what they think. Everyone has different views on things so it is cool to see what they think(:

  • I have always wanted to discuss writing with professional writers. There is nothing more inspiring.

  • This looks like a great book! This also looked like a great event! I’m for sure going to have to find this book to have at my house!

  • Very impressively fun – Wow – you met the authors and attended a Times Premier subscriber exclusive event – does it get much better?

  • I’ve never been able to attend one of these, and I so want to! I love to read and I’m getting a sample of this on my kindle to check it out

  • This sounds like it was an amazing event indeed. It must have been amazing to meet some of these authors. This book sounds interesting as well as inspirational and I will have to read it. Thanks for sharing.

  • That many Authors under one roof must have made for a fantastic evening. Mary Higgins Clark is a favorite Author of mine. I would of been thrilled to have met her. By The Book sounds fantastic!

  • That sounds like an amazing event. I would have loved to have attended that myself.

  • I haven’t touched a good book for years! Will look for this on my trip to the bookstore tomorrow. Hopefully, we have copies here in Manila. Since I’ve been busy these past few weeks, a light read like this one will fit the bill.

  • You cannot open a book without learning something,so true is it not. With all the tech for reading now, Kobo and other eReaders, its so much easier to pick up a book. Thank you from another book worm.

  • What a wonderful time you must have had Elizabeth! I would have given anything to attend. I am seriously going to look for this book. I can see several of my fave authors on there. It sounds fascinating!

  • What a fun opportunity for you! I love reading interviews with authors and other creative minds, seeing their histories and what inspires them. I think I’d love this book.

  • What a fun opportunity for you! I love reading interviews with authors or other creative minds – seeing their histories and what inspires them. I think I’d love this book.

  • What a wonderful event 🙂 I tend to enjoy the local bookstores instore events when they invite the authors. I have collected a few signed copies of my fave books this way 🙂

  • What a wonderful event. She sounds like she went out of her way to make it special for those attending, but I bet it was special for her too. 🙂

  • What an exciting event to be invited to especially for us who live with words and stories. This will be a good book for my coffee table, I’ve always enjoyed reading Mary Higgins Clark thrillers and it’s absolutely wonderful that she autographed your copy.

  • A lot of authors with books that I have read are on the list. This really looks like a wonderful and insightful event. Ang you are lucky to get that autograph. -katrina centeno

  • Good thing. This is a great opportunity. I really love read books, this one looks interesting.

  • This looks like an interesting book! I will check out Kinokuniya to see if it’s sold in Singapore. I don’t know the authors stated in the books, but I want to see what are the questions and the kind of answers they give to Pamela Paul!

  • A good book to learn something useful in your life. Well, this really an inspired piece to live with. Books are the hidden treasure of everyone’s life. Fernando Lachica

  • A must read for aspiring writers like me :). I will check out if it’s already available in here!

  • This book can really boost you with stories from successful people. This would be a great read and a great motivator.

  • It’s nice to be a part of that event to learn more things about something you’re interested in. You’re so lucky to have received a signed copy of the book. 🙂

  • This book looks very interesting! I haven’t heard of it before, I’m sure it will go on my pile of next books to read!

  • Now, that’s an interesting book! I’d love to have one.

    Love the quote from Confucius; “You cannot open a book without learning something.”

  • Wow, 65 well-known authors! This book must be a treasure full of wisdom! I love reading and I am sure all these uncut interviews will be great inspiration for me to read!

  • How cool you got your copy live and in person by her. Seems like a great book to have in a collection.

  • This is the kind of book I would enjoy. By just looking at the illustrations, it really looks like a great book. However, I don’t think it’s available here in our country.

  • That is such a cool book! I love the illustrations. Will look forward to buying it myself. 🙂

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