IN-PERSON: Mary Laura Philpott - "Bomb Shelter" in conversation with Joanna Rakoff

Event date: 
04/14/2022 - 7:00pm

Mary Laura Philpott, author of I Miss You When I Blink, joins us in-person at Wellesley Books to discuss her new book, Bomb Shelter, a poignant and powerful memoir-in-essays that tackles the big questions of life, death, and existential fear with humor and hope. Mary Laura will be in conversation with Joanna Rakoff, author of My Salinger Year

Your $5 ticket can be put towards a copy of Bomb Shelter bought at the event. Alternatively, you can buy the book and receive a free ticket. Either way, you can buy tickets online through Eventbrite by clicking the button below (fees apply), or by phone at 781-431-1160 (no fees). 

If you don't want to attend the event but would still like to buy a copy of the book, you can do so by scrolling down and adding the book to your shopping cart. Just remember that buying the book alone is not the same as buying an admission ticket.  


COVID Protocols
• Attendees must wear masks at all times during the event.
• Attendees must present proof of COVID-19 vaccination along with a picture I.D.



A lifelong worrier, Philpott always kept an eye out for danger, a habit that only intensified when she became a parent. But she looked on the bright side, too, believing that as long as she cared enough, she could keep her loved ones safe.

Then, in the dark of one quiet, pre-dawn morning, she woke abruptly to a terrible sound—and found her teenage son unconscious on the floor. In the aftermath of a crisis that darkened her signature sunny spirit, she wondered: If this happened, what else could happen? And how do any of us keep going when we can’t know for sure what’s coming next?

Leave it to the writer whose critically acclaimed debut had us “laughing and crying on the same page” (NPR) to illuminate what it means to move through life with a soul made of equal parts anxiety and optimism (and while she’s at it, to ponder the mysteries of backyard turtles and the challenges of spatchcocking a turkey).

Hailed by The Washington Post as “Nora Ephron, Erma Bombeck, Jean Kerr, and Laurie Colwin all rolled into one,” Philpott returns in her distinctive voice to explore our protective instincts, the ways we continue to grow up long after we’re grown, and the limits—both tragic and hilarious—of the human body and mind.



Mary Laura Philpott, author of the national bestseller I Miss You When I Blink, writes essays that examine the overlap of the absurd and the profound in everyday life. Her writing has been featured frequently by The New York Times and appears in such outlets as The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Real Simple, and more. A former bookseller, she also hosted an interview program on Nashville Public Television for several years. Mary Laura lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with her family.



Joanna Rakoff is the author of the international bestselling memoir My Salinger Year and the bestselling novel A Fortunate Age, winner of the Goldberg Prize for Fiction and the Elle Readers’ Prize. Rakoff’s books have been translated into twenty languages. The film adaptation of My Salinger Year, starring Sigourney Weaver and Margaret Qualley, was released in theaters worldwide in 2021 and is currently streaming. She has written frequently for The New York Times, Vogue, Marie Claire, The Guardian, and many other publications.


Bomb Shelter: Love, Time, and Other Explosives By Mary Laura Philpott Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982160784
Availability: On our shelves now.
Published: Atria Books - April 12th, 2022

I Miss You When I Blink: Essays By Mary Laura Philpott Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982102814
Availability: On our shelves now.
Published: Atria Books - April 7th, 2020

My Salinger Year By Joanna Rakoff Cover Image
ISBN: 9780307947987
Availability: On our shelves now.
Published: Vintage - May 12th, 2015

Event address: 
Wellesley Books
82 Central St
Wellesley, MA 02482-5714