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Local bestsellers for the week ending April 4

Based on reporting from the independent booksellers of the New England Independent Booksellers Association and IndieBound.

Virtual author readings for April 11-17

All events take place online; visit the venue website for more information.

Author and filmmaker James McBride poses for a portrait during the 2012 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. McBride’s "Deacon King Kong" a fictional snapshot of a Brooklyn neighborhood in the late 1969, has won the inaugural Gotham Book Prize, given for outstanding writing about New York City.

James McBride’s ‘Deacon King Kong’ wins inaugural Gotham prize

McBride's fictional snapshot of a Brooklyn neighborhood in late 1969 has won the inaugural Gotham Book Prize, given for outstanding writing about New York City.

This combination photo shows authors Harper Lee, left, and Toni Morrison, whose books, “To Kill a Mockingbird" and "The Bluest Eye” were among the more than 270 challenged books in 2020.

Books by Steinbeck, Alexie among those objected to in 2020

The American Library Association reported more than 270 challenges to books in 2020, from Toni Morrison's “The Bluest Eye” to Harper Lee's “To Kill a Mockingbird,” compared to 377 the year before.

BOOKS

A new biography presents the unvarnished Philip Roth, revealing a complex man

For some, Roth was hard to love; for most, he was hard to know. In his new biography of the novelist, though, Blake Bailey paints a vivid portrait of the Jewish kid from New Jersey who would go on to become one of the world’s most celebrated authors.

Andrea Lee is the author of five books, including the National Book Award–nominated memoir "Russian Journal."

Andrea Lee on living in Italy, and reading in English

In her new novel, “Red Island House,” Lee joins together short stories of one family’s life in Madagascar over 20 years to reveal what can happen when cultures clash.

BOOKS

Searching for ways to understand and survive ‘Girlhood’

In her searching essay collection, “Girlhood,” Melissa Febos combines personal, cultural, investigative, and scholarly passages to ferociously dissect the lessons that shaped her, and the result is a book that fills the educational void she’d noticed as a child. Her subject is how to survive in the world as a girl.

Poet Joy Harjo will read and discuss her work as part of National Poetry Month celebrations through the Harvard Art Museums.

A new fellowship for Black writers at GrubStreet, a Joy Harjo visit to Harvard, and new work at the archives in the Boston Public Library

News of a literary note from around the region.