Special Events


50 Shades of Reading

Wed 4/1 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM at Brookline Interactive Group, 46 Tappan Street

E. L. James’s Fifty Shades of Grey rocketed to the top of the best-sellers lists in 2012.  The title’s enormous success immediately provoked a cultural conversation: Where had this phenomenon come from?  Who was reading it?  Why this particular book at this time?

As time went by, the series also attracted substantial criticism for its representation of women, sexuality, abuse, relationships, and what fantasies can mean in the real world.

Readers continue to devour the series, and on Valentine’s Day weekend the movie adaptation broke box office records both for R-rated films and for the success of a female director. 

Join us for a lively discussion on all of the issues surrounding this series and its wider pop culture impact.  Topics will range from the series origins in fan fiction, romance and erotica publishing, and the representation of relationships. We will take an in-depth look at media aimed at women: debating what women want, what women create, and how being in charge of the process changes what everyone reads and sees.

Panelists include media critics, academics, romance experts, authors, and librarians.

Nomi S. Burstein
Organization for Transformative Works
Nomi S. Burstein is the technical writer on the Organization for Transformative Works’ Web Strategy, Design & Development committee. She has been reading fanfiction since 1990 and writing it since 1999. Nomi lives in Brookline with her husband and twin daughters, who are themselves transformative. Find her at www.asknomi.com.

Amy Diamond
Amy works at Driscoll elementary school in Brookline, MA as a paraprofessional as she finishes college at Lesley College. Her college coursework and own research outside of school has focused on education, psychology, family studies, prevention (rather than intervention), social structures and inequalities (particularly as they relate to race, class, and gender), and feminist issues. She is particularly interested in the media’s negative impact on females of all ages.

Cassie Luna
The Network/La Red
Cassie Luna is the Technical Assistance Coordinator at The Network/La Red. Cassie provides tailored consulting and trainings to mainstream domestic violence organizations to improve access to services for survivors in the LGBQ/T, polyamorous, and BDSM communities. They are passionate about their work, biking around Boston, and baking.

Cecilia Tan
Cecilia Tan
Cecilia Tan has been writing BDSM fiction since 1992. In the wake of "50 Shades" her work has gained international acclaim and her novel SLOW SURRENDER (Hachette, 2013) won the RT Reviewers Choice Award and the Maggie Award. She is also the founder of Circlet Press, and Lifetime Achievement Award winner from the National Leather Association.

Jennifer Webb
Jennifer Webb is a librarian at Cary Memorial Library in Lexington, Massachusetts, specializing in romance fiction and pop culture. She and her colleagues help library users keep up with the e-book revolution and find their next favorite book.

Robin Brenner
Panel moderator and Reference Librarian
Robin Brenner is the Reference and Teen Librarian at the Brookline Public Library. An active member of the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), she has served on multiple awards committees. She is the editor-in-chief of the graphic novel review website No Flying No Tights.


An afternoon with Hallie Ephron & Roseanne Montillo

Sat 4/4 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM at Main Library, Hunneman Hall

Join us for an afternoon with two thrilling authors Hallie Ephron & Roseanne Montillo

Hear all about their two newest titles Night Night, Sleep Tight and The Wilderness of Ruin: A Tale of Madness, Fire, and the Hunt for America’s Youngest Serial Killer

There will be time for a question & answer session and signings. Titles will be for sale courtesy of the Brookline Booksmith.


Food Preservation

Wed 4/8 3:30 PM at Main Library, Hunneman Hall

This event will feature three 15-minute stations that demonstrate fermenting, pickling, and canning. The demos will repeat three times so attendees have a chance to approach each station. Also participate in a Kraut Mob (what's that? visit www.bostonferments.com). Co-sponsored with the Brookline Department of Public Health in celebration of National Public Health Week 2015. 3:30 - 5:00 pm.


Natural Living with Essential Oils with Jennie Backstrom

Sat 4/11 2:00 PM at Main Library, Hunneman Hall

Learn how to take your health into your own hands by using essential oils safely and effectively for everything from a clean home, to mood and pain management, to an increase in energy, to making over your medicine cabinet. You'll be able to experience the oils hands-on and learn the different ways to use them in your daily life— topically, internally and aromatically. Plus everyone will go home with a small sample of their own. Join me and find natural solutions and support for healthy, empowered living. 2 - 3:30 pm.


Getting the Most out of your Visit with your Doctor

Tue 4/14 7:00 PM at Main Library, Hunneman Hall

Part of Brookline Health Department's Celebration of National Public Health Week

Dr. Dennis Rosen's book "Vital Conversations: Improving Communication Between Doctors And Patients" discusses the importance of good communication between doctors and patients, explores why it often goes badly, and provides concrete guidance to both patients and doctors for improving the communication with each other. Dr. Rosen focuses on these topics in his talk, and he will also share personal anecdotes from a career practicing medicine in 4 countries (US, Israel, Haiti, and Guatemala) over the last 18 years. He is a pediatric pulmonologist and sleep specialist at Boston Children’s Hospital and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School.


Resume Writing Workshop with George Zeller

Wed 4/29 6:30 PM at Main Library, Hunneman Hall

This workshop focuses on resume content, beginning with your summary statement, and provides tips and strategies to highlight your strengths, skills, and positive outcomes. Learn how to translate experience & duties into accomplishments and outcomes; construct a draft summary statement; be strategic about the content and format of your resume; identify and avoid disqualifiers in your resume.George Zeller is a Senior Employment Specialist at Career Moves, a division of JVS. He works with professional level job seekers across a wide spectrum of occupations. George earned his BA from Clark University and an M.Ed. in Counseling from Northeastern University. He is also a Certified Professional Resume Writer (Professional Association of Resume Writers). 6:30 - 8:00PM.


Starting or Growing your Business - the Small Business Administration Advantage

Wed 5/13 1:00 PM at Main Library Hunneman Hall

Starting or Growing your Business - the Small Business Administration Advantage by Lisa Gonzalez Welch, SBA Economic Development Specialist. MUST REGISTER by May 11 at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or 617-565-5588. May is Small Business Month! This free workshop provides information on various SBA programs and services available for start-up and existing businesses. 1 - 2pm.


The Love Dogs

Thu 5/21 2:30 PM at Main Library, Hunneman Hall

This award-winning Boston band combines elements of jump blues, New Orleans R&B, and early rock n’ roll into their own powerhouse sound! FMQB Magazine calls Love Dogs concerts “the stuff of legend- soulful vocals, killer grooves, spontaneity, and pure entertainment play equal parts.” 2:30 - 3:30pm.


Sonny & Perley Perform Brazilian Romance - The Bossa Nova Phenomenon

Wed 6/10 3:00 PM at Main Library, Hunneman Hall

Husband and wife team Sonny & Perley capture the essence of the sultry romance and mesmerizing rhythm of Bossa Nova. The world discovered Bossa Nova in 1963 with the huge success of the master composer Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Girl from Ipanema". Simultaneously inspiring American Jazz and popular music with this "new wave", albums were recorded by legendary artists including Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Stan Getz and Sergio Mendez and Brazil 66. To this day, Jobim's music and the Bossa Nova continue as a major force and inspiration for artists such as Diana Krall, Natalie Cole and countless others. Perley offers both English and Portuguese interpretations of lyrics. 3-4:30pm. www.sonnyandperley.com.

Tee Off @ the Library

Sat 6/20 12:00 PM at Main Library

SAVE THE DATE for this year’s Tee Off @ the Library!

Saturday June 20th all day.

  • Kids: Noon-2:30pm
  • Teens: 3:00-5:00pm
  • Adults: 6:00-9:00pm

And this year’s theme is Clue (the board game, the movie, whatever you know best)…so be prepared to solve a murder and be on the look out for Miss Scarlet, Professor Plum, and our other dinner guests…


Art by the amazingly talented Vera Brosgol.