The Michigan Humanities, in partnership with Literary Detroit, will celebrate the success of the 2015-16 Great Michigan Read with its final author discussion event on May 18 at the Tangent Gallery’s Hastings Street Ballroom in Detroit.

The event kicks off at 7 p.m. and includes discussion by New York Times Best Seller Station Eleven author Emily St. John Mandel. Books will be available for sale and signing.  This event is free and open to the public.

The Great Michigan Read, presented by the Michigan Humanities, is a biennial program that invites all Michiganians to join a statewide discussion surrounding a single literary title. This event is one of many statewide author events that began in September 2015. This year, over 300 statewide partners joined the Great Michigan Read, including libraries, schools, literary organizations and much more.

In the spring issue of Humanities Magazine, Mandel said, “the nature of the Great Michigan Read program itself was deeply appealing to me. The goal of the program is to encourage literacy and community. I’d written a book set partly in Michigan, and that book has changed my life.”

“Station Eleven opened a dialogue about survival and how we relate to one another.  Probably one of the most exciting parts of this book selection is the appeal to broad audiences – young people love it, and so do adults,“ said Shelly Kasprzycki, Executive Director of the Michigan Humanities.

Emily St. John Mandel is available for media interviews. For scheduling, please contact James Nelson, Michigan Humanities, at or (517) 372-7770.

The event at the Tangent Gallery is the last in a series of upcoming events. Other events featuring Mandel include:

May 10 @ 7:00 pm at the Troy Community Center, Troy, MI. Hosted by Troy Public Library. FREE

May 11 @ 12:00 pm at the University of Michigan – Dearborn, Social Sciences Building, Room 1500, Dearborn. FREE

May 11 @ 7:00 pm at the Towsley Auditorium, Ann Arbor. Hosted by Literati Bookstore. FREE

May 17 @ 7:00 pm at Planterra Conservatory, West Bloomfield. In partnership with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Planterra Conservatory and Michigan Humanities. Tickets are $15 and $30, available online at

May 18 at 1:00 pm at the Plymouth District Library, Plymouth. FREE

About the Michigan Humanities

The Michigan Humanities is a nonprofit organization created to foster a better understanding of each other and our state through local cultural, historical and literary experiences. MH was founded in 1974 and is funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities and individual donors. For more information, please visit or call (517) 372-7770.

About The Great Michigan Read Author, Emily St. John Mandel

Emily St. John Mandel is the author of four novels, most recently Station Eleven, which was a finalist for a National Book Award and the PEN/Faulkner Award, and won the 2015 Arthur C. Clarke Award, the Toronto Book Award, and the Morning News Tournament of Books, and has been translated into 27 languages. A previous novel, The Singer’s Gun, was the 2014 winner of the Prix Mystere de la Critique in France. Her short fiction and essays have been anthologized in numerous collections, including Best American Mystery Stories 2013. She is a staff writer for The Millions. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.

“Station Eleven” Book Summary

Station Eleven is the story of the Traveling Symphony, a troupe of Shakespearean actors and orchestral musicians traveling the shores of the Great Lakes in a post-apocalyptic Michigan. Striving to maintain their humanity in the altered landscape of a world where 99% of the population has been wiped out by a flu pandemic, the Traveling Symphony operates under one credo: “Survival is insufficient.”

Station Eleven is set in a world turned upside down, but is ultimately an exploration of people surviving and remaking their lives by preserving the qualities that make us human: culture, art, and the humanities.

Funding for The Great Michigan Read is provided by:

National Endowment for the Humanities
The Charles J. Strosacker Foundation
Edsel & Eleanor Ford House
Henry Ford Estate Fair Lane
Marge Potter
Library of Michigan Foundation
The Jury Foundation
Third Wednesday Book Club
Governor James J. and Janet Blanchard
Tina S. Van Dam
Jan and Ron Fedewa
Kathleen and James Mullins
Bill Alsover
Warmels and Comstock, PLLC
MSU Federal Credit Union
Public Policy Associates, Inc.
Frey Foundation
Pat and Bill Waring
Steve Wilson

In-Kind Donations:

Michigan Radio
Image Creative Group