A night for the books! On Monday, August 24, Grimsby’s own Laurie Petrou joined us for our first ever virtual Grimsby Author Series event. From her home, she was framed by stacks of books and we expected nothing less. As the Zoom Webinar jumped from screen to screen, we were granted the view of more books piled on Ken’s table as he hosted and the beloved library stacks surrounding Kathryn while she moderated. These were scenes that celebrated the passion of reading that has surely kept many of us persevering over the last few months.
Laurie Petrou made her debut with her thrilling novel, Sister of Mine, in 2018 at the Grimsby Author Series where she presented her first ever book reading. Returning tonight, Laurie fills the Grimsby community with pride as she discusses her most recently published novel, Love, Heather with another series first: through our screens.
Missed this program? Watch the recording below:
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With an active imagination and acute attention to detail, the characters of Love, Heather developed from two-dimensional figures in the writing process into fleshed-out, vulnerable individuals with insecurities and complexities who speak to readers. Laurie acknowledges these attributes sentence by sentence, particularly regarding the tension-filled high school years loaded with bullying, belonging, change and mental health. The main character, Stevie, is a grade nine student living in a small Niagara town who has her own YouTube channel about old movies. When Kathryn asked about Laurie’s relationship with Stevie her response was immediate, saying, “Oh yeah, having a YouTube channel is definitely something I could relate to with Stevie,” with the 80’s film Heathers being a nostalgic movie and one that was easy to tap into. “Heathers permitted girls to be angry – it was so different,” Laurie reminisced about the film’s impact.
Love, Heather is about the pull of revenge, of being seen and of hierarchy changes between friends. Stevie is the vessel in which Laurie expresses the need to hide from others and one’s adolescence. In an encompassing manner, Laurie describes writing about Stevie’s cruel bullying experience as, “Difficult to write, difficult to read, and more difficult to experience.”
Before securing her writing career, Laurie’s devotion to the art of literacy was forged by books such as Catcher in the Rye and The Secret History; authors including Heather O’Neill and Kate Atkinson. With such powerhouse inspirations it is no wonder that Love, Heather is so thoroughly executed in its style and timeless impact.
A big thank you to Laurie Petrou for kicking off our very first Grimsby Author Series Zoom session. We look forward to seeing all of the goodness she put into print in the near future. Love, Heather can be found at the Grimsby Library and Epic Books of Hamilton!
This post was written by the Grimsby Author Series’ fabulous volunteer blogger, Teanne Teeft. Thanks Teanne!
Fall 2020 Season
Emma Donoghue & Helen Humphreys
Join us for the first online Fall 2020 Grimsby Author Series event! Enjoy this free Zoom Webinar from the comfort of your own home with bestselling authors Emma Donoghue and Helen Humphreys. They’ll be discussing their latest novels and taking questions from the audience.
- Date: Monday, September 14
- Emma Donoghue / The Pull of the Stars
- Helen Humphreys / Rabbit Foot Bill
- 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Wine Giveaway “Door Prize”
This evening this will feature a wine giveaway from Calamus Winery. One lucky winner will win a free bottle of wine to be picked up after the event. (Hint: To further increase your enjoyment of our upcoming event, be sure to visit Calamus Estates to purchase a bottle of wine that you can enjoy during the discussions and readings with Emma Donoghue and Helen Humphreys!)
Signed copies of the books
If you would like to get a signed copy of either The Pull of the Stars or Rabbit Foot Bill please email or call our wonderful sponsors at Epic Books of Hamilton. They’ll have signed books ready, just tell them you would like to order one as a guest of the Grimsby Author Series.
Deliveries are free within Hamilton, or if you’d like to pick it up at the library, let them know at the time of purchase. We’ll let you know when it is ready to pick up here.
Book orders for pick-up at the library to be submitted by: Friday, September 18
The Grimsby Author Series is the main fundraiser for the Grimsby Public Library. Donations are gratefully accepted through Canada Helps.