The Blue Ear Books community

Blue Ear Books authors, editors, and contributors constitute a community of mutual support, available to each other informally as well as in planned and organized ways to share experience, networks, ideas, and other resources. We also stay in regular contact with each other and with readers through a variety of channels, including Zoom meetings and a Substack newsletter that we invite you to subscribe to. The Substack features topical essays and book excerpts from our authors and is archived here for anyone to read free of charge (but consider supporting Blue Ear Books authors by becoming a paid subscriber).

Telling the stories, spreading the word

Blue Ear Books authors show what can be accomplished by taking initiative to reach out to organizations and venues in a position to offer audiences and help get the word out:


  • Christo Brand and Andrew Russell offer a presentation in which they tell the story of Christo’s lifelong friendship with Nelson Mandela, which began when Mandela was imprisoned on Robben Island and Christo was a young warder (guard) there – a story that’s told fully in Christo’s book Doing Life with Mandela. They did a virtual event, along with South African former political prisoner Igshaan Amlay, hosted by our friend Janie Hermann of the Princeton Public Library, on January 22, 2023. Janie called it a “terrific launch” of the new Blue Ear Books edition of Christo’s book in the USA and posted a recording of it at this link on the Princeton Public Library’s YouTube channel. Christo and Andrew are planning an in-person US speaking tour in November 2023. Read this flyer to learn more.
  • The Princeton Public Library hosted a similarly excellent virtual event February 23, 2022 with Eugene Smith, author of Back to the World: A Life after Jonestown, in conversation with Prof. Christopher Fisher of The College of New Jersey. (Eugene Smith’s collaborator on Back to the World was Blue Ear Books publisher Ethan Casey.) The reading of that virtual event can be viewed on the Princeton Public Library’s YouTube channel at this link.