Earth Day is celebrated in 192 countries around the world every April. Mark this year’s observance with eco-friendly stories and a craft made with recycled materials in the new Children’s Center at the Main Library on Tuesday, April 19 at 6:30 p.m. This Family Fun Night is for all ages and is open to the public.
BAPL is excited to host author David Lubar in our brand-new Frances L. Barnard Children’s Center on April 7 at 7pm. You may be thinking, “But the library is closed then.” Indeed we are! Good job memorizing our hours. But this event is happening after the library closes. We are in fact calling it Authors After Hours!
Library Director Josh Berk sat down with Mr. Lubar over the internet to talk about David’s life, impressive career, and exciting new book, the highly-acclaimed young adult novel CHARACTER, DRIVEN. Read on!
JB: Hi David! According to the Library of Congress, you have written 37 books, far more than any other Lubar. Steven Lubar has seven, but Melvin Lubar and Sheldon B. Lubar each only have a mere one apiece. What is the secret of your success, vis-a-vis other Lubars?
DL: Steven Lubar writes nonfiction, so he has to actually do research, while I get to make everything up. I think the other two Lubars you mentioned are busy running multi-million dollar companies. (None of the wealthy Lubars is related to me, as far as I can tell. Which is another reason I had to write so many books.)
There are at least two other people named David Lubar, one of whom is a dentist, who was kind enough to scan and forward a fan letter he received last year from a kid who’d read my chapter book, Punished. We have no idea how the young reader ended up sending it to that address. The other is on the Milwaukee Brewers advisory board. I’m pretty sure he’s doing a much better job of that than I would. And then, there’s David Lubars, creative director at BBDO. I sometimes get tweets from people in the advertising industry, congratulating me on his accomplishments. But I definitely hold the lead when it comes to total titles in print. Based on that, I believe I might be the most successful Lubar living in Nazareth. Or, at least, Lower Nazareth.
JB: We are proud to count you among the many successful authors of the Lehigh Valley! When did you move here and where did you live before you called Lower Nazareth home?
DL: I was born and raised in Morristown, NJ. It was a great place to grow up. (Character, Driven is set there, though I thoroughly disguised that by calling the town Rismore. Please keep this secret to yourself.) During and after college at Rutgers, I lived in New Brunswick, NJ and various towns in that area. In 1982, I was offered a job in Sacramento, designing video games. After our daughter was born, my wife and I decided we wanted to move back to NJ, to be close to the new grandparents. NJ real estate had gotten pretty expensive. Fortunately, a friend told us to check out the Lehigh Valley. We liked what we saw. We moved here about thirty years ago. It’s been a good place to raise a family.
JB: Sweet segue into the new book. Tell us a bit more about Character, Driven!
DL: My pleasure. Character, Driven is, on the surface, a coming-of-age novel about a young man approaching his 18th birthday and an uncertain future. But, on another level, as the title might imply, it is a novel about writing a novel. As Cliff Sparks tells his story, he also discusses the challenges of telling a story. Cliff is brutally honest with the reader, revealing the sort of thoughts most of us won’t even share with our closest friends. But he also has a sense of humor and a love of wordplay, so despite the dark parts of the journey, there are plenty of light moments…
As I look over these words, I feel I’ve totally failed to convey the heart of the book. Writers can be very bad at describing their own work. Fortunately, other writers often step up to handle the task. Maybe the best way to tell people about the book is to share the wonderful blurb I got from NY Times best-selling author Cynthia Leitich Smith: “The brainiest, funniest, most heartbreaking, romantic, mind-bending, violent, inappropriate, spot-on, sensitive, insensitive, diverse, offensive, compelling, baffling, irresistible, inspiring YA novel I’ve ever read. Lubar’s ‘loser’ hero Cliff breaks rules and wins big.” I have to admit I’m thrilled and a bit gobsmacked by the overwhelmingly positive response the book has received, including starred reviews from three major magazines and two inquiries, so far, about film/TV rights, and praise from many of my fellow writers. I feel it might be my best work, to date.
JB: Wow: That’s wonderful! Congratulations. I can’t wait to read it. Final question: Everplay the “Page 41 game?” It’s a thing where you grab a random book, open it to page 41, read the first line, and it will divine your future. Want to try it with Character, Driven?
DL: “He talkin’ ’bout your sweet booty, cutie.”
JB: No comment.
The Bethlehem Area Public Library, 11 W. Church Street, is hosting Author After Hours on Thursday, April 7 at 7:00 p.m. Meet author David Lubar as he celebrates the launch of his new book Character, Driven. The book has received starred reviews in the big three- Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, and Booklist. The novel is a coming of age book for teens. Books will be available for purchase. No registration is required. Parking is available beneath the Library except in spaces reserved for police.
Do you know why this young lady is smiling? She just visited the new Children’s Center on the 2nd floor of the Main Library. We are still waiting for some back-ordered furniture and the donor recognition board to be installed, but the room is now open. The room is inspiring and has surprises everywhere!
We are having a special program on Saturday, April 2 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm to celebrate our “soft opening.” Author Julie Saab and illustrator David Gothard of the Little Lola picture books will be visiting, as well as Curious George. The youth rock band, No Pressure, is performing and there will be art activities and a scavenger hunt.
Bring your toddler to Learn and Grow, a Family Place workshop offered at the South Side Branch on Tuesdays from 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. beginning March 29. Children, ages 1-3, play with educational toys and explore music and art activities. Each week childhood professionals from the community serve as resources and interact one-on-one with parents, answering questions on an individual basis. Register today!
The Children’s Room will be closed to the public on Thursday afternoon, Saturday and Monday, but for a very good reason! The children and teen collections will be moved upstairs into the new Children’s Center this weekend. The new Center will open on Tuesday. We are still waiting for some furniture to be delivered and the beautiful donor recognition board to be installed, so we will wait to have a formal grand opening with our wonderful donors. But in the meantime, come and see the new space starting next week
Wednesday, March 23 is Fright Night at the Main Library. Teens in grades 6 to 12 can chill out by watching a scary movie at 6:30 pm. on the first night of their spring break. Snacks are included. No registration for this free movie night!
Learn how from the pros! Irish step dancers are coming on Tuesday, March 15 to Family Fun Night to perform and teach simple steps. The Freedom High School Fiddle Ensemble performs Celtic tunes on Wednesday, March 16. More here…
Both programs are thanks to our devoted Friends of the Library!