The Rock Island and Moline Public Libraries present “An Evening with Jessamine Chan and Emily Maloney" -- May 25.

Wednesday, May 25, 7 p.m.

Presented by the Rock Island and Moline Public Libraries

Appearing virtually in a special event made possible by Illinois Libraries Present, a pair of gifted writers will participate in the May 25 presentation An Evening with Jessamine Chan and Emily Maloney, an entertaining and informative night featuring Chan, the New York Times bestselling author of The School for Good Mothers, and Maloney, the critically lauded author of the essay collection Cost of Living.

A former reviews editor at Publishers Weekly, Chan holds an MFA from Columbia University and a BA from Brown University, and her work has received support from the Elizabeth George Foundation, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Wurlitzer Foundation, Jentel, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center, the Anderson Center, VCCA, and Ragdale. Her short stories have appeared in such publications as Tin House and Epoch, and in her debut novel The School for Good Mothers, Chan employs dark wit to explore the pains and joys of the deepest ties that bind us. The tale of a Chinese-American forced to prove that a "bad mother" can be redeemed, Chan's bestseller has been the beneficiary of widespread raves, with Kirkus Reviews deeming the novel an "enthralling dystopian drama that makes complex points about parenting with depth and feeling.” The Library Journal concurred, stating that this "stunning debut could not be timelier, leaving no stone unturned in its allusion to the real-life legal assaults constraining women today."

Maloney's non-fiction Cost of Living, an essay collection now out from Henry Holt, is about her transformation from patient into EMT and in the pharmaceutical world, set against the backdrop of the failure of the American healthcare system. The author's work has appeared in the Washington Post, Glamour, Virginia Quarterly Review, The Atlantic, the North American Review, and the American Journal of Nursing, and Maloney has also worked as a dog groomer, pastry chef, general contractor, tile setter, catalog model, and ceramics artist. With her book based on Maloney's essay that first appeared in the Virginia Quarterly Review and was selected for editor Leslie Jamison's Best American Essays 2017, Maloney is also a MacDowell Fellow, a 2019 Illinois Arts Council Fellow, and a 2015 graduate of the University of Pittsburgh MFA program. Publishers Weekly, meanwhile, wrote that in Cost of Living, "Maloney artfully unpacks the fraught connection between money and health in her brilliant debut collection.”

The virtual program An Evening with Jessamine Chan and Emily Maloney will take place on May 25, participation in the 7 p.m. event is free, and more information is available by calling (309)732-7323 and visiting, or calling (309)524-2470 and visiting

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