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Everybody Reads Meet the Author & Community Conversation with Beth Piatote Nov. 1 

Join us this November to celebrate Everybody Reads and Native American Heritage Month as we invite author, Beth Piatote, to discuss her book, “The Beadworkers,” at several locations across the Palouse and Lewiston-Clarkston Valley November 1-4. “The Beadworkers” is a short story collection set in Native Idaho and the Northwest. 

We will be hosting Piatote for a Meet the Author Luncheon at The Center at Colfax Library on Tuesday, Nov. 1 at 12 p.m. Enjoy hearing a reading from Piatote and engage in a community conversation with the author during the Q & A portion. 

Order an optional catered lunch to be delivered from Serfes Foods at or by calling Sarah at 509-397-4366 by Oct. 25. Choose between their signature fall turkey sandwich with cranberry-sage cream cheese or a vegetarian harvest bowl with roasted butternut squash, feta, pumpkin seeds, and more autumn goodness. Both meals come with an apple-spice cake for dessert. 

You are also welcome to brown bag it and bring your own lunch or simply come to listen.  

Residents can pick up their copy of “The Beadworkers” at any branch of Whitman County Library as well as local participating libraries and bookstores. We even have extra copies of the Everybody Reads book in preparation for this event, but there is no need to have read the book to attend. 

Everybody Reads is a regional program that builds a shared reading experience around a single book to foster curiosity, spark discussion, and celebrate a love of story and community engagement.  

The Beadworkers by Beth Piatote: 

Piatote’s story collection grounds its stories in the landscapes and lifeworlds of Native Idaho and the Northwest, exploring the inventive and unforgettable pattern of Native American life in the contemporary world. Told with humor, subtlety, and spareness, the mixed-genre works of this short story collection find unifying themes in the strength of kinship, the pulse of longing, and the language of return. Inventive and filled with vibrant characters, “The Beadworkers” draws on Indigenous aesthetics and forms to offer a powerful, sustaining vision of Native life.  

About the Author: 

Beth Piatote is an Associate Professor at the University of California – Berkeley, a creative writer of fiction, poetry, plays, and essays; and an Indigenous language revitalization activist/healer, specializing in Nez Perce language and literature. Beth is Nez Perce, enrolled with Colville Confederated Tribes. In addition to her research and teaching, she is involved in ongoing efforts to repatriate ancestors from museums as part of a larger movement for reparation and redress. 

 Praise for The Beadworkers: 

The Native experience in Idaho, like in many other places, has been characterized by the land, the spirit of the people and the coming of white settlers. The Beadworkers holds stories that encapsulate that experience, then and now, and how the Nez Perce have held onto their culture, language and bonds with both family and nature. –NPR Books 

Provocative . . . [A] richly layered debut short story collection . . . A collection that gives voice to what is so often left unsaid. — San Francisco Chronicle 

Her prose might be lean, but as a whole her debut short story collection, The Beadworkers, is lush and kaleidoscopic . . . With humor, compassion, and insight, it explores the ease with which conflict seeps through time, and celebrates the resilience of people, beauty, and art in its midst. –Sam Levin, The Los Angeles Review of Books 

Gripping and utterly readable . . . The stories here are wide-ranging but encompass many perspectives of Indigenous people in North America. — Literary Hub 

Awards and Accolades for The Beadworkers:  

Long-listed for the 2020 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Short Story Collection 

Long-listed for the 2020 Aspen Words Literary Prize 

Shortlisted for the 2019 NCIBA Golden Poppy Book Award 

Long-listed for the 2019 Northern California Golden Poppy Book Award in Fiction 

Past Comments from Everybody Reads Attendees:

“Excellent idea, especially wonderful to bring noted authors to the Palouse.” 

“The quality of authors each time is what I like most.”  

“I love learning about the writing process and hearing the story behind the book.” 

“Getting up close and personal with the author is the best part.”  

“Connecting with a community of readers.” 

“Delicious lunch in a pleasant setting.” 

“A chance to ask the author questions directly creates a deeper connection with the book for me.” 

For a full schedule of events, discussion questions, and read-alikes, please visit or contact Sarah Phelan-Blamires at Whitman County Library, 509-397-4366 or

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