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An image of Stacey Swann and Sarah Bird next to an image of the cover of Olympus, Texas and Last Dance on Starlight Pier
Monday, May 16, 2022 - 7:00pm
603 N Lamar Blvd
Austin, TX 78703

Event Registration & Guidelines

  • Tickets are required to join this in-person event and are available exclusively through Eventbrite.
  • Refunds are available up to 7 days before the event. 
  • Our event space will be operating at a limited capacity until further notice. 
  • Our check-in station will be located at the front of the store. We will scan your ticket’s barcode upon arrival. 
  • You will receive your copy of either Olympus, Texas or Last Dance on Starlight Pier (depending on your ticket selection) at the check-in station on the day of the event. If you can’t make it we'll save your copy at the store for up to 6 days or we can arrange to mail it. Shipping charges apply. Only available for domestic shipping.
  • The event will take place on the second floor of our store. 
  • Check in will start at 6:30PM and the event will begin at 7:15PM.
  • Event will run for 45-60 minutes, including an audience Q&A. 
  • The authors will be signing and personalizing copies of their books after the speaking portion of the event. 
  • We will have chairs available, but feel free to stand or move your chair around.
  • The store will be closed at the time of the event and registers will only be open for purchase of the event book. If you need to browse, we suggest you come within our operating hours (10am-7PM). 
  • We will be requiring attendees to wear masks for this event.
  • BookPeople reserves the right to cancel or postpone this event if Covid protocols require it. 
  • There won’t be a live stream or recording available. 
  • If you have any other questions please email us at online@bookpeople.com


Ann Patchett meets Friday Night Lights in this big-hearted, multigenerational family saga: keen psychological insights, Technicolor characters, tons of Texas swagger, and an absolute powder keg of a plot, all with a clever wink toward classical mythology, perfect for readers of Madeline Miller’s Circe.

The Briscoe family is once again the talk of their small East Texas town when prodigal son March returns two years after he was caught having an affair with his brother’s wife. Meanwhile, his father Peter’s own past affairs and indiscretions continue to plague the family – not least of all Peter’s wife June, who is growing tired of being the long-suffering spouse. Within days of March’s arrival, someone is dead, marriages are upended, and even the strongest loyalties are tested. With a fun wink to Classical mythology and a McMurtry-esque sense of place, this is a thoroughly modern, disappear-into-its-pages family saga, rich in messy family dynamics, drama, and psychological complexity.

At publication in hardcover in May 2021, the book was a GMA Book Club selection, national bestseller, and Center for Fiction First Novel Prize nominee. Stacey appeared on Good Morning America, Weekend Edition Saturday with Scott Simon, and Think and the book received incredible reviews from People, USA Today, New York Times Book Review, Los Angeles Times, Oprah Daily, Texas Monthly, and more.


Stacey Swann holds an MFA from Texas State University and was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. Her fiction has appeared in Epoch, Memorious, Versal, and other journals, and she is a Contributing Editor of American Short Fiction. A native Texan, she splits her time between Austin and her family’s ranch in Lampasas. Other than raising cattle, they bear no resemblance to the Briscoes.


Set during the Great Depression, Last Dance on the Starlight Pier is an unforgettable novel about one woman—and a nation—struggling to be reborn from the ashes.

July 3. 1932. Shivering and in shock, Evie Grace Devlin watches the Starlite Palace burn into the sea and wonders how she became a person who would cause a man to kill himself. She’d come to Galveston to escape a dark past in vaudeville and become a good person, a nurse. When that dream is cruelly thwarted, Evie is swept up into the alien world of dance marathons. All that she has been denied—a family, a purpose, even love—waits for her there in the place she dreads most: the spotlight.

Last Dance on the Starlight Pier is a sweeping novel that brings to spectacular life the enthralling worlds of both dance marathons and the family-run empire of vice that was Galveston in the Thirties. Unforgettable characters tell a story that is still deeply resonant today of America as it learns what Evie learns, that there truly isn’t anything this country can’t do when we do it together. That indomitable spirit powers a story that is a testament to the deep well of resilience in us all that allows us to not only survive the hardest of hard times, but to find joy, friends, and even family, in them.


Sarah Bird’s novel, Above the East China Sea, was long-listed for the Dublin International Literary Award. A Dobie-Paisano Fellowship helped in researching Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen. Raised in an Air Force family on bases around the world, Sarah is the child of two warriors, a WWII Army nurse and an Air Corps bombardier, who met at a barn dance in North Africa. She lives in Austin, Texas.

By purchasing a book from BookPeople, you are not only supporting a local, independent business, but you are also showing publishers that they should continue sending authors to BookPeople.

Thank you for supporting Stacey Swann, Sarah Bird, and your local independent bookstore!