Photo by Grace Kwon

Photo by Grace Kwon

Jessica Shattuck

Jessica Shattuck is the award-winning author of The Hazards of Good Breeding, Perfect Life, and most recently, NYT bestseller The Women in the Castle. Set at the end of World War II, The Women in the Castle tells the story of three widows whose lives and fates become intertwined. Combining piercing social insight and vivid historical atmosphere, The Women in the Castle is a dramatic yet nuanced portrait of war and its repercussions that explores what it means to survive, love and ultimately, to forgive in the wake of unimaginable hardship.

Jessica's writing has appeared in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Glamour, Mother Jones, WIRED, The Believer Magazine, The Boston Globe, Open City, The Tampa Review, and The Sun, among others. She is the winner of the Frank O'Connor short story competition in 2001, and her book, The Hazards of Good Breeding was a finalist for the 2003 PEN/Winship Award, and a New York Times Notable Book. The Women in the Castle also won the 2017 New England Book Award. A graduate of Harvard University, she received her MFA from Columbia University.

Drawing from her in depth knowledge of history, the influences of her own family history (read her amazing NYT Op-Ed, "I Loved My Grandmother. But She was a Nazi"), and her passion for storytelling and writing makes for an unforgettable event.  Jessica explores and offers a fresh perspective on one of the most tumultuous periods in history.

Jessica lives in Brookline, MA with her husband and three children.

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Talks and Topics

  • Women In the Castle Author Presentation
  • The Untold Stories of World War II: New Perspectives on Survival, Love, and Forgiveness
  • The Influence of News Propaganda in World War II: Lessons for Today
  • Ordinary Germans: Supporting Hitler and Living with that Mistake
  • Three Women: Complicity and Resistance in WWII and its Aftermath
  • The German Resistance to Hitler: Recognizing Evil and Choosing Action Over Complicity

Check Jessica's Availability

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Previous & Upcoming Events:

  • May 9, 2017: Chappaqua Library - Chappaqua, NY
  • Jan 16, 2018: St. Louis County Library - St. Louis, MO
  • Feb 8, 2018: Margaret Mitchell House - Atlanta, GA
  • April 14, 2018: Pasadena Festival of Women Authors - Pasadena, CA
  • June 26, 2018: Museums on the Green - Flamouth, MA
  • Sept 20, 2018: Working Writers Series - Worcester, MA
  • Sept 28-30, 2018: Harbor Springs Festival of Books - Harbor Springs MI

In the News: