Melanie Benjamin

January 21, 2018
3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Melanie Benjamin is the author of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling historical novel The Aviator's Wife and The Swans of Fifth Avenue. Her previous historical novels include the national bestseller Alice I Have Been and The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb. Benjamin's novels have been translated into more than ten languages, featured in national magazines, and optioned for film.

Melanie is a native of the Midwest, having grown up in Indianapolis, where she pursued her first love, theatre. She lives in Chicago with her husband, and near her two grown sons. In addition to writing, she puts her theatrical training to good use by being a member of the Penguin Random House Speakers Bureau. When she isn't writing or speaking, she's reading. And she's always looking for new stories to tell.

The Girls in the Picture

Hollywood, 1914: Twenty-five-year-old Frances Marion arrives in Tinseltown fleeing a second disastrous marriage and determined to make it as an artist. A twist of fate propels her headlong into the dressing room of America's first superstar, Mary Pickford, and into a friendship that will define both their lives and extraordinary careers. The two reign over Hollywood in its infancy and through its golden age. The first screenwriter to win multiple Academy Awards, Marion is widely considered one of the most important female screenwriters of the 20th Century. Pickford was the first actor of true international celebrity, the first to have her name on a movie marquee - and the first woman to run a major motion picture studio. At a time when women's salaries peaked at $10/week, hers totaled $625,000.

Book sales and signings will follow the presentation, with all proceeds benefitting the Carmel Clay Public Library Foundation. Registration is required by emailing the Foundation office at or calling (317) 814-3905.

This program is part of the Visiting Author Series and will be held in the Program Room.