Conversation topics for your next cocktail party

3:00 pm Non-Fiction Conversation Topics for Your Next Cocktail Party 

After spending the better part of the last two years holed up at home, learning new skills (maybe mixology?) or just bingeing on The Bachelor, many of us are more than eager to rejoin the reopened world. Still, many uncertainties of the pandemic-era linger, among them the question: How do we even have a normal conversation anymore? Never fear. This engaging session will give you plenty of fodder to impress friends and wow strangers, as four nonfiction authors discuss their latest works – a journalist’s investigation into a baseball cheating scandal, a sociologist’s examination of what reality TV reveals about our culture, a whiskey expert’s guide to infused cocktails and a licensed psychotherapist’s guide to coping with anxiety.


Moderator:  Rob Dougherty, former manager of the Clinton Bookstore

Andy Martino, Cheated: The Inside Story of the Astros Scandal (Penguin Random House 3/22) ANDY MARTINO has written about sports, culture and entertainment, and has covered Major League Baseball for more than a decade. A former staff writer at the Philadelphia Inquirer and New York Daily News, he is currently a reporter and analyst covering MLB for the SNY network in New York.

Danielle Lindemann, True Story: What Reality TV Says About Us (Farrar, Straus and Giroux 2/22) Danielle J. Lindemann is an associate professor of sociology at Lehigh University who is interested in gender, sexuality, the family, and culture. She is the author of Commuter Spouses: New Families in a Changing World and Dominatrix: Gender, Eroticism and Control in the Dungeon. Her research has been featured in media outlets such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, Rolling Stone, Billboard, and The Chronicle of Higher Education

Kurt Maitland, The Infused Cocktail (Cider Mill Press 4/21)  Kurt Maitland started his whiskey journey with drams of Jameson’s in college. He has been exploring the wider world of spirits in general, and whisk(e)y in particular, ever since. He currently is Deputy Editor of the popular Whiskey Reviewer website and the curator of the Manhattan Whiskey Club. He is the author of Measure, Shake, Pour (11/19) and DRINK: The Ultimate Cocktail Book (4/19). 

Alison Seponara, The Anxiety Healer’s Guide (Simon & Schuster 3/22) Alison Seponara, MS, LPC, is a licensed psychotherapist and anxiety healer. Alison specializes in cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness-based positive psychology with individuals who struggle with anxiety disorders. Known as “The Anxiety Healer” on Instagram, Alison is dedicated to ending the stigma of mental health by offering a safe space for those around the world to find a supportive community free of judgment and bias. Alison is the host of The Anxiety Chicks podcast in which she uses her expertise as a therapist and her own life experience. Alison is the founder of The Anxiety Healing School, an online curriculum with multiple healing courses that help students learn how to combat intrusive thoughts, face fears, and rewire the anxious brain.