Best-selling novelist Tommy Orange will be the featured speaker at Madison Public Library Foundation’s 2024 Lunch for Libraries fundraiser on Tuesday, April 23, at Monona Terrace Convention Center. 

Orange is well known for his acclaimed debut novel There There, which speaks to the complexities of the urban Native American experience, exploring narratives of violence and recovery, hope and loss, and identity and power. In 2019, There There earned Orange the PEN/Hemingway Award, an American Book Award, and the John Leonard Prize. He was also a 2019 Pulitzer Prize finalist. 

Orange will discuss his highly anticipated follow-up, Wandering Stars, in which he traces the legacies of the Sand Creek Massacre of 1864 and the Carlisle Indian Industrial School through three generations of a family in a tale that is by turns shattering and wondrous. 

Orange is a 2014 MacDowell Fellow, a 2016 Writing by Writers Fellow, and a graduate of the MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts. He is an enrolled member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes of Oklahoma, and was born and raised in Oakland, Calif. He lives in Angels Camp, Calif., with his wife and son. 

Check-in for the event will begin at 11:30 a.m., followed by lunch and the program at noon. Tickets will go on sale in January. If you’re interested in purchasing a table or in sponsoring the event, please email More details will be available on the foundation website,, in early January.