For immediate release | May 21, 2013

RUSA Literary Tastes: Celebrate your love of reading with author program featuring Peter Heller, Jonathan Tropper and other award-winning authors

CHICAGO — Four award-winning authors will be featured at the Reference and User Services Association’s (RUSA) 2013 ALA Annual Conference program “Literary Tastes: Celebrating the Best Reading of the Year”: Peter Heller, Jonathan Tropper, Matti Friedman and Lindsay Faye.

Each year expert readers’ advisory librarians from RUSA’s Collection Development and Evaluation Section (CODES) spend hundreds of hours reading and reviewing books written for adults to identify the most outstanding writing published in the areas of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, genre fiction, Jewish literature and audiobook narration. “Literary Tastes” is an opportunity to hear from noteworthy authors whose books are among their annual selections and also celebrate the art and craft of writing with fellow book lovers. Review all of RUSA’s adult book awards at the RUSA website.

The program will be held from 8.-10 a.m. on Sunday, June 30, at McCormick Place Convention Center in conjunction with the 2013 ALA Annual Conference. Following the formal presentation, authors will be available for book signing. Access the event listing in the ALA Conference Scheduler.

This year’s presenting authors are:

  • Peter Heller, author of 2013 RUSA Notable Book “The Dog Stars” (Knopf), which tells the story of a man, his dog, his airplane and a will to survive in post-apocalyptic Colorado. Library Journal gave “The Dog Stars” a starred review, calling it “a stunning debut novel. In spare, poetic prose, [Heller] portrays a soaring spirit of hope that triumphs over heartbreak, trauma, and insurmountable struggles. A timely must-read.”

  • Jonathan Tropper, author of 2013 RUSA Notable Book “One Last Thing Before I Go” (Dutton), which also received a starred review from Library Journal, describing it as ”[e]minently quotable, hilariously funny, and emotionally draining.” Tropper keeps the reader on the edge of their seats, wondering, “Can Drew Silver fix his messy, disastrous life and relationships before the clock runs out?”

  • Matti Friedman, author of “The Aleppo Codex: A True Story of Obsession, Faith, and the Pursuit of an Ancient Bible” (Algonquin), which won the 2013 Sophie Brody Medal for achievement in Jewish literature. “The Aleppo Codex” is a beautifully written and compelling work that illuminates a remarkable range of Jewish themes: the Diaspora, the State of Israel, the survival of original Jewish texts and the fate of the Jews in the Arab world.

  • Lyndsay Faye, author of “The Gods of Gotham” (Putnam), the top pick for The Reading List’s Mystery category in 2013. In this tale of fiction crafted within the historical context of 1840s New York City, the discovery of a mass grave of child prostitutes spurs “copper star” Timothy Wilde to hunt a killer through the underbelly of the city. Colorful period slang enlivens this carefully researched story about the dawn of modern policing.

Start your conference Sunday with the Literary Tastes program and finish with the Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction Reception, where RUSA, in partnership with Booklist, will announce the 2013 winners of these prestigious awards. Purchase tickets for the reception at the ALA Annual Conference website.

The Reference and User Services Association, a division of the American Library Association, represents librarians and library staff in the fields of reference, specialized reference, collection development, readers’ advisory and resource sharing. RUSA is the foremost organization of reference and information professionals who make the connections between people and the information sources, services, and collection materials they need. Not a member, but interested in discounted registration rates on conference, preconferences and other events? Join, renew or add RUSA to your ALA membership at Learn more about the association at

Related Links

Literary Tastes event listing in the ALA Conference Scheduler

RUSA/Booklist ticketed events


Liz Markel

Marketing & Programs Manager