Raising A Reader MA (RAR-MA) has grown over the years, and with it, the Dinner with an Author gala. Since the event’s inception, Hank Phillippi Ryan and Anita Diamant have been featured authors at the event. Both have a long list of books and an affinity for supporting families to experience the joy of reading.
Hank Phillippi Ryan
“The joy of a non-stop page turner is unmatched–when you open a book and the real world falls away-that’s a treat we all enjoy. But an author can make a book more than a story–we can educate, and enlighten ,and fascinate, we can encourage and inspire. I love it when I hear from a reader–oh, your book changed my life, I never thought about the world that way before!”
Hank’s love of books and intense curiosity began at a young age. She shared how her and her sister would borrow ten books a week from the local library and read in the hayloft behind her parents’ house. When she asked her mother a question, her mother would reply: “I’m not telling you the answer. You go and find out”–ultimately encouraging Hank to read the entire World Book Encyclopedia.
“How much fun is it to learn something new? How much fun is it to travel someplace exceptional? Have an adventure, meet a fascinating person (or creature), see a breath-taking sight? All those joys are in the pages of books–we can travel beyond our imagination, push our boundaries, walk in another person’s shoes–we can fly, dream, and understand.”
In addition to being an accomplished and awarded author of 11 thrillers, Hank is the on-air investigative reporter for Boston’s WHDH-TV, winning 36 EMMYs and dozens more journalism honors for her groundbreaking journalism. Her support of Raising A Reader MA was a natural fit and we are thrilled to have her back for another year!
“Reading changes my mood and my tempo. Generally, it slows me down to live in the moment, inside the book. When I read novels, I have to find someone I’m rooting for, someone I like. I care. I get invested and that makes me feel good. I try to do the same in the novels I write.”
Anita’s talents and works run the literary spectrum: from novels, to essays, to journalism, to non-fiction guides. Like Hank, Anita grew up in a literacy-rich environment. She traces her love of reading back to the bedtime reading routine her father created with her brother and herself. Anita focused on instilling this love of reading in her own daughter–something they both cherish to this day.
Anita is the author of twelve books. The Red Tent, her first work of fiction, was a New York Times bestseller, published in more than 25 countries, and adapted as a two-part miniseries by Lifetime TV. Her other bestselling novels include The Boston Girl, Good Harbor, The Last Days of Dogtown, and Day after Night. Anita has published a collection of essays and six non-fiction guides to contemporary Jewish life, including The Jewish Wedding Now and The Jewish Baby Book.