Each year the Library hosts readings, lectures, and discussions by authors and other public figures. You may watch video recordings of recent programs on our YouTube channel. Our archive of audio recordings goes back more than 10 years and includes thousands of memorable Library events.
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Gun Violence & Its Impact
Listen to a public conversation with different community voices brought together to imagine ways to contend with gun violence as a pervasive and often divisive social problem. Gun violence has entered our headlines many times this year to heartbreaking effect. We present a public conversation with different community voices brought together to imagine ways to contend with this pervasive and often divisive social problem.
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 49.76MB] [Play time: 01 hr 48 min]
Chris Bayley discusses his book 'Seattle Justice: The Rise and Fall of the Police Payoff System in Seattle'
Author and former Prosecutor Chris Bayley discusses his successful fight to end a deeply ingrained system of corruption that existed in Seattle's law enforcement and political spheres until the early 1970s. Many view Seattle as a progressive and high-tech city, but Seattle's history includes 100 years of vice and official corruption. City officials turned a blind eye to illegal gambling, unlicensed bars, and prostitution, in exchange for which police officers demanded "operating fees" in the form of cash payments from establishment owners. The money trail that started on the streets ended high up in the Seattle Police Department and affected top levels of both city and county government. -- 'Seattle Justice' is the story of Chris Bayley's underdog fight to defeat the incumbent Prosecutor, reform the Prosecutor's office, and investigate and prosecute officials for the payoff system.
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 26.27MB] [Play time: 0 hr 57 min]
Your Business - Start Smart: Financing Your Business
Take the next step in starting and growing your business. Explore the many avenues toward financing your venture, including SBA commercial loans, alternative lending, microloans, retirement rollovers, and crowdfunding in a moderated, informative panel of experts. You will learn about the 5 C's of credit,"bootstrapping," and the difference between a secured and an unsecured loan. This is your opportunity to get your questions answered by the experts. Recorded on Oct. 26, 2015.
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 54.36MB] [Play time: 01 hr 34 min]
Novelist Colum McCann reads from and discusses 'Thirteen Ways of Looking'
Join us for an evening with award-winning novelist Colum McCann. McCann will read and be joined by John Freeman, himself an award-winning writer and book critic. A novella evoking insecurity in the age of security cameras and three heartbreaking stories make up McCann's first fiction collection in 12 years. -- Praise for 'A New Way of Looking': "A superbly crafted and deeply moving collection of fiction ... underscores [McCann's] reputation as a contemporary master." -Kirkus starred review. -- "Separate and together, these four works prove McCann a master with a poet's ear, a psychologist's understanding, and a humanitarian's conscience." Publishers Weekly starred review.
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 40.86MB] [Play time: 01 hr 11 min]
A Night with Children's Authors Gennifer Choldenko, Jennifer Holm and Rebecca Stead
Join us for an evening with beloved children's authors as they discuss their latest projects, moderated by Jolie Stekly, instructor of the Writing for Children program at the University of Washington. -- Author of the Newbery Honor Book "Al Capone Does My Shirts," Gennifer Choldenko shares her newest novel "Chasing Secrets," an exciting historical mystery set in San Francisco during the Gilded Age. -- Three-time Newbery Honor author Jennifer Holm discusses her most recent projects, including the widely popular "The Fourteenth Goldfish." -- Rebecca Stead, Newbery Medal winner for "When You Reach Me," joins us to talk about her new release, "Goodbye Stranger," a captivating and intriguing novel that explores friendship, love, bullying, double standards, and what it means to be true to yourself and to those you love.
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 26.55MB] [Play time: 0 hr 57 min]
From Data to Action: Open Data and You
Expert panelists introduce you to the world of public open data: where to find it, how to get started using it, and examples of creative projects that use public data. Data is everywhere, and you can use it in more ways than you'd think: to make an argument to city council, to write a grant for a cause you believe in, to report on a situation, or even to create an app. Discussion points include: resources for open data on a range of topics with a special focus on data.seattle.gov, ways to combine data sets and make maps, best ways to learn about data if you are starting out on a project, and examples of the creative ways people have used open data.
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 38.33MB] [Play time: 01 hr 23 min]
2015 Washington State Book Awards: Find Out the Winners!
Join writers, readers, booksellers, librarians, publishers and friends to learn who won the 2015 Washington State Book Awards. This podcast features brief readings from the winning titles. -- The Washington State Book Awards recognize eight outstanding books published by Washington authors in 2014 in the categories of fiction, poetry, biography/memoir, and history/general nonfiction for adults. The Scandiuzzi Children's Book Award honors a children's picture book and one book each for early readers (ages 6 to 8), middle readers (ages 9-12), and young adults (ages 13 to 18).
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 34.16MB] [Play time: 0 hr 59 min]
Seattle Author David Williams Discusses His New Book
Join author David Williams, author of 'Too High Too Steep: Reshaping Seattle's Topography,' in conversation with book critic Michael Upchurch, to hear the fascinating stories behind the remarkable engineering projects that shaped Seattle, including regrading Denny Hill, filling in the Duwamish tideflats, and replumbing Lake Washington. -- David Williams' writing focuses on the intersection of people and the natural world. His books include 'Stories in Stone: Travels Through Urban Geology,' 'The Seattle Street-Smart Naturalist: Field Notes from the City,' and 'Cairns: Messengers in Stone.' David also works at the University of Washington's Burke Museum and leads walking tours about the natural environment and history of Seattle.
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 34.63MB] [Play time: 01 hr 00 min]
A View from the Bridge: A Conversation with the Seattle Repertory Theatre
Listen to a discussion of Seattle Repertory Theatre's production of Arthur Miller's 'A View from the Bridge'. This discussion will include director Braden Abraham (Artistic Director of Seattle Repertory Theatre) and members of the cast of 'A View from the Bridge'. This classic play tells the story of a longshoreman by trade, Eddie Carbone, who is confident in the working-class neighborhood he calls home. That life changes when he agrees to harbor his immigrant cousins. A love affair exposes a dark family secret, and suspicion, jealousy and betrayal soon follow in this passionate drama by one of America's greatest playwrights.
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 24.15MB] [Play time: 0 hr 42 min]
The Queer Detective Returns: Discovering LGBTQ Mysteries and Suspense
Murder, theft, cons and crimes shadow the streets within a mystery novel, but thankfully for its innocent denizens, there's a hero or heroine on the case, striking fear into villains and solving the toughest of puzzles, all while alluding danger and living out of the closet. "Queer" detectives, investigators, and mysteries solvers are not new to the noir world. Protectors of its dark cityscapes include such literary LGBTQ luminaries as Joseph Hansen's dogged investigator Dave Brandstetter, Nicola Griffith's steely heroine Aud Torvingen, and Josh Lanyon's inquisitive bookseller Adrien English. -- Join us for an evening reading with three writers who spotlight crime solvers who find the culprit and celebrate LGBTQ love and relationships. This reading event will include Lambda Literary winner Nicole Kimberling (Bellingham Mysteries), Rainbow Award winner L. A. Witt (Hostile Ground) and Northwest suspense novelist Jove Belle (The Job).
Listen to Audio (mp3) [file size: 27.45MB] [Play time: 0 hr 59 min]