Happy 40th Birthday, Politics and Prose!

Congratulations to Politics and Prose, Washington, D.C., which is celebrating its 40th birthday on Saturday, June 22.

From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., there will be family storytime and arts & crafts in the children and teen department. All-day activities include music, coloring sheets, and a photo booth. Exclusive anniversary merchandise will be available. In addition, Lyft is offering a 50% discount on rides to the celebration, and the community is being encouraged to share favorite memories about the store.

The highlight of the day, from our point of view, is a panel discussion at 5 p.m. on "The Past, Present, and Future of Bookselling" that features:

Bradley Graham, who bought Politics and Prose in 2011 with his wife, Lissa Muscatine, from longtime owners Carla Cohen and Barbara Meade. Earlier he had been a reporter and editor for 30 years at the Washington Post and wrote two books, Hit to Kill: The New Battle over Shielding America from Missile Attack (2001) and By His Own Rules: The Ambitions, Successes, and Ultimate Failures of Donald Rumsfeld (2009).

Ruth Liebmann, v-p, accounting marketing, at Penguin Random House. She has also worked at literary agency, as an author, and a bookseller--and is a longtime champion of independent bookstores.

Wil Haygood, the author of 10 books, including prizewinning biographies of Thurgood Marshall, Sammy Davis Jr., Sugar Ray Robinson, and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. His book, The Butler, was made into a film directed by Lee Daniels. Haygood has been a reporter for the Washington Post and the Boston Globe. A Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow, in 2022 Haygood received the Ambassador Richard C. Holbrooke Distinguished Achievement Award from the Dayton International Literary Peace Prize Committee.

Katy Waldman, a staff writer at the New Yorker, where she writes about books, culture, and more. Previously, she was a staff writer at Slate and the host of the "Slate's Audio Book Club" podcast. She won the National Book Critics Circle's Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing in 2019 and the American Society of Magazine Editors's award for journalists under 30 in 2018.

Moderator Susan Coll, who has worked at Politics and Prose for seven years as both the director of events and programs and now as the events advisor. She is the author of seven novels, including Bookish People and Real Life and Other Fictions, and was the president of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation for five years. Her work has appeared in the New York Times Book Review, the Washington Post, Washingtonian magazine, Moment magazine, NPR.org, and Atlantic.com.

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