“An unforgettable story of female strength, hope and friendship. This collaborative work is magnificent—a true revelation!” —Pam Jenoff, New York Times bestselling author of The Woman with the Blue Star
“A brilliant story brimming with unexpected friendships and family ties. Historically sound and beautifully stitched, The Thread Collectors will stay with you long after the last page is turned.” —Sadeqa Johnson, international bestselling author of Yellow Wife
Bookfest Presents Shaunna J. Edwards & Alyson Richman, The Thread Collectors
In partnership with Congregation Shearith Israel Sisterhood
Pricing: $10 Advance Tickets, $15 at the door
Inspired by the authors’ own family histories, The Thread Collectors is a rich historical novel set during the Civil War about two women — one Black and yearning for freedom in New Orleans, the other a Jewish abolitionist in New York — whose resourceful sewing to support their communities leads them on unexpected, dangerous journeys as they fight to bring their beloveds home from the front. As the two women risk everything for love and freedom during a brutal Civil War, their paths converge in New Orleans, where an unexpected encounter leads them to discover that even the most delicate threads have the capacity to save us. Truth in fiction: Alyson’s great-great-great uncle, a German Jew, was a musician in the Union army, whereas his brother fought for the other side, allowing the novel in part to explore what happens when family members hold opposing views on something as horrific as slavery, especially when that family is a minority in a new country. The character of Stella is partially inspired by Shaunna’s great-great-great Aunt Janie, a woman of Black and White parentage who managed to become a financially independent landowner while her relatives struggled to find economic stability. Shaunna’s family came to own a sugarcane farm carved out of a plantation that she and her siblings still own to this day.
Alyson Richman is the USA Today bestselling and #1 international bestselling author of several historical novels including The Velvet Hours, The Garden of Letters, and The Lost Wife, which is currently in development for a major motion picture. Alyson graduated from Wellesley College with a degree in art history and Japanese studies. She herself is an accomplished painter and her novels combine her deep love of art, historical research, and travel. Alyson’s novels have been published in twenty-five languages and have reached the bestseller lists both in the United States and abroad. She lives on Long Island with her husband and two children, where she is currently at work on her next novel.
Shaunna J. Edwards has a BA in literature from Harvard College and a JD from NYU School of Law. A former corporate lawyer, she now works in diversity, equity and inclusion. She is a native Louisianian, raised in New Orleans, and currently lives in Harlem with her husband. The Thread Collectors is her first novel.