2nd Annual ECRL Reads: Get Involved!

The 2nd Annual ECRL Reads is here, featuring the suspenseful mystery The Fate of Mercy Alban by Wendy Webb.


In The Fate of Mercy Alban, Grace Alban has spent 20 years away from her childhood home, the stately Alban House on the shores of Lake Superior, for reasons she would rather forget. But when her mother’s unexpected death brings Grace and her teenage daughter home, she finds more haunting in the halls and passageways of Alban House than her own personal demons.


Wendy Webb was born and raised in St. Louis Park, Minnesota. Even though she loved her career as a journalist, writing for national and local magazines and newspapers, she never forgot her dream of being a novelist. Her writing has been compared to that of Stephen King and Bram Stoker. She is a two-time Minnesota Book Award winner for The Tale of Halcyon Crane (2011) and The End of Temperance Dare (2018). Today, she divides her time between homes in Duluth and Minneapolis, and a cabin on the Gunflint Trail.


Join us as Wendy Webb discusses The Fate of Mercy Alban:


Now through November, East Central Regional Library locations will be buzzing with enticing events for the 2nd Annual ECRL Reads. Get involved in this region-wide program!

  • Minnesota’s Most Haunted Locations–The Scariest Places in MN: Take a ghostly journey to some of the most haunted places in Minnesota with paranormal researcher, author and lecturer Chad Lewis. His presentation covers the entire state, from wandering ghosts in the North Woods to a haunted B7B in Wabasha. From phantom creatures prowling the woods to graveyard apparitions in your own backyard, no place in Minnesota is without its own hauntings. (Hosting location: Princeton Area Library)

  • Bizarre History of Minnesota — Strange Stories from Our Past: Another presentation by Chad Lewis, this one showcases over 100 bizarre newspaper stories from Minnesota that have not been seen in over 100 years. These unbelievable stories were not lost, they were simply hidden. This program provides a time portal back to the early days of the state when it was filled with strange deaths, ghosts, sea serpents, peculiar people, medical anomalies, psychic phenomena, and UFOs. (Hosting location: Mora Public Library)

  • Archival presentation: Although your photographs and papers may not have high monetary value, the worth they have for you, your family and your community is priceless. Learn how to take care of your family documents and photographs in this workshop presented by Rachel Howell, Assistant Director of East Central Regional Library. Registration is required. (Hosting locations: Sandstone Public Library, Rush City Public Library)


  • Paul Imholte’s Celtic Music: Stringman Paul Imholte performs Irish and Scottish reels and jigs on the fiddle and hammered dulcimer, sings traditional ballads and leads sing-alongs with his guitar and banjo. He uses original songs to echo the experience of Irish emigrants to America. Along with his solo work, Paul is a founding member of the Celtic/American band Ring of Kerry. (Hosting location: Mille Lacs Lake Community Library)


  • Novel Activism: Authors Sarah Stonich and Sally Fransen will lead a discussion about the quiet activism of literature in an era of loud headlines. Attendees are encouraged to engage in this conversation about books, stories, poetry — any writing that has in some way shaped or impacted an outlook on any issue, political or personal. (Hosting location: Chisago Lakes Area Library)



  • Writing Family Stories: Do you want to write family stories for future generations? Do you worry your children and grandchildren will never know the simple pleasures of growing up in a world without cell phones and internet? Through the use of free writes and prompts, Angela Foster will help you begin putting those memories onto paper. She will give practical advice to help you write stories your family will treasure for generations. Registration is required. (Hosting location: Wyoming Area Library)

  • Diving In: Explore the Memoir: In this introductory workshop presented by Rachel Moritz, explore the rich genre of memoir writing. Try out several writing exercises designed to spark memory and explore family and life stories. We’ll also read excerpts from classic memoirs and discuss aspects of craft such as voice, discovery, and scene. Writers of all backgrounds and abilities welcome; no prior experience necessary. Registration is required. (Hosting location: Cambridge Public Library)

  • Tall Water and Steel Ships: Thom Holden, former director of the Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center, will talk about the Great Mataafa Storm of 1905, the most devastating ever for ships on Lake Superior. Historic photographs illustrate vessels caught in this storm. Thom also will discuss marine weather forecasts and lifesaving equipment. (Hosting location: Rush City Public Library)


In addition, check the Events Calendar for book discussions of The Fate of Mercy Alban at East Central Regional Library locations.

ECRL Reads is funded with money from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.