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Three notable authors booked for lecture series


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Robin Burcell

Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Alan Taylor has been added to the second half of the 2013-14 Friends of the Library’s Author Lecture Series at Sacramento State. Taylor makes an appearance Thursday, March 6, joining previously announced series headliners Robin Burcell (Wednesday, Feb. 5) and Anthony Barcellos (Thursday, April 17).

The lectures are at 3 p.m. at the University Library Gallery and are free and open to the public. To obtain a parking pass, contact Sally Hitchcock at (916) 278-5954 or

Burcell, a former Lodi police officer, will discuss her just-published crime novel, The Kill Order, featuring recurring protagonist FBI special agent Sydney Fitzpatrick.

“It would be fun to talk about the plot in my book mirroring the latest NSA spy scandal stuff,” Burcell says. “Who knew that story would break right before the book came out? My book deals with a fictional Stuxnet-like computer worm, purposefully put in place to spy on, well, just about everyone. It depends on who is doing the spying and what their agenda is. Unfortunately it isn’t always who or what we expected.”

Burcell was the first female officer in the Lodi Police Department, where she spent 18 years as a patrol officer, detective and FBI-trained hostage negotiator and forensic artist. She also worked as a criminal investigator for Sacramento County’s Department of Human Assistance.

Taylor, a professor of history at UC Davis, will discuss The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, 1772-1832, a finalist for the 2013 National Book Award in Nonfiction. In 1996, Taylor won the Bancroft and Pulitzer prizes for William Cooper’s Town: Power and Persuasion on the Frontier of the Early American Republic.

Barcellos will talk about his debut novel, Land of Milk and Money, the story of Portuguese immigrants and their prosperous California dairy farm. Barcellos grew up on his grandfather’s San Joaquin Valley dairy farm and now teaches mathematics at American River College.

The Author Lecture Series is sponsored by Friends of the Library, University Library, University Library Gallery and the Hornet Bookstore. For media assistance, contact Sacramento State’s Office of Public Affairs at (916) 278-6156. – Dixie Reid