Library Live

The NBPLF is pleased to present the 2019-2020 season of Library Live!

Helen Zia
Last Boat out of Shanghai: The Epic Story of the Chinese who Fled Mao’s Revolution
Thursday, February 20, 7:00pm
Ticket: $27 General / $21 NBPLF Member*

Zia is an activist, award-winning author and former journalist. In 2000, her first book, Asian American Dreams: The Emergence of an American People, was a finalist for the prestigious Kiriyama Pacific Rim Book Prize. She also authored the story of Wen Ho Lee in My Country Versus Me, about the Los Alamos scientist who was falsely accused of being a spy for China in the “worst case since the Rosenbergs.”

Helen’s latest book is Last Boat out of Shanghai: The Epic Story of the Chinese who Fled Mao’s Revolution. Released in January 2019, it traces the lives of emigrants and refugees from another cataclysmic time in history that has striking parallels to the difficulties facing migrants today.


Tomi Adeyemi
Children of Blood and Bone
Children of Virtue and Vengeance

Thursday, March 12, 7:00pm
Tickets: $27 General / $21 NBPLF Member

At age 25, Adeyemi is a Hugo and Nebula Award-winning Nigerian-American writer and creative writing coach based in San Diego, California. After graduating from Harvard University with an honors degree in English literature, she studied West African mythology, religion, and culture in Salvador, Brazil. Her first novel, Children of Blood and Bone, debuted at #1 on The New York Times Best Seller list in 2018 and is being developed into a movie by Lucasfilm/Fox. Her highly anticipated second novel, Children of Virtue and Vengeance, comes out in December 2019. Adeyemi speaks about her inspiration for her books, the creative process, and her many influences. When she’s not writing or watching BTS Korean music videos, she is teaching creative writing at


Watch Tomi Adeyemi on Jimmy Fallon



Steven Rowley
The Editor
Thursday, April 2, 7:00pm
Ticket: $10 General / $7 NBPLF Member*

Rowley’s smash debut, Lily and the Octopus (2016) was a publishing phenomenon. The magical tale of grief and friendship sent shock waves through the literary world and was heralded on both sides of the Atlantic.  Sold in translation in nineteen languages, Rowley’s remarkable book made The Washington Post’s list of Notable Fiction and is currently in development as an Amazon Studios feature film. 

Rowley now delivers on the soaring promise of that debut with The Editor (2019) a stunning exploration of the complicated bonds forged within families and a tribute to the serendipitous relationships that shape and define us.


Program Details:

  • Doors open at 6:30pm
  • Program is 7:00pm - 8:30pm
  • Book Sale and Signing, refreshments
  • Friends Room, Central Library, 1000 Avocado Avenue, Newport Beach, CA 92660
  • Reservation or Tickets required
  • FREE parking in Library Lot and Civic Center Structure

Questions? 949-717-3818 or