Books on the Square will host a reading of an as yet undisclosed (and in fact unselected) chapter from Lost Providence on Thursday evening at 7 o’clock. I will also answer questions and sign copies of the book. My first two readings, at Symposium Books’ downtown launch on Aug. 28 – the date of publication – and at Barrington Books in Garden City on Aug. 31, were of Chapter 9, “Lost: The Outlet Company Store.” Thursday night I may eventually decide to read Chapter 15, “Downtown Providence 1970 Plan,” about the effort to save downtown by destroying it. That might be fun.
The book, which I wrote over a period of three months last summer and fall, is published by History Press, is based on a column I had written for the Providence Journal in 2014 called “Providence’s 10 best lost buildings.” The first ten chapters, Part I of the book, are devoted to those buildings (with side trips to existing buildings). Part II is dedicated to civic development projects between 1840 and the early years of this century. The book is a history of change in Rhode Island’s capital and an argument for respecting the state’s historic architectural heritage as the logical pathway to a more successful state.
Books on the Square is at 471 Angell St., in Wayland Square. Thursday’s event is free and open to the public.