The Library Foundation's cultural series featuring
author events, musical performances, film screenings, cooking demos & art exhibitions
at the Austin Central Library

Library Foundation members receive priority seating for atCentral events, as well as priority in author signing lines. To become a Library Foundation member, click here.

Carmen Maria Machado & IN THE DREAM HOUSE

Tuesday, January 28 | 7:00-9:00pm
Austin Central Library | Special Events Center

Carmen Maria Machado’s new memoir, In the Dream House, is an engrossing, haunting account of a toxic relationship gone bad, and a bold dissection of the cultural representations of psychological abuse in both queer and heteronormative books and film. Machado will read from and discuss the book with author Deb Olin Unferth. Presented in partnership with BookPeople and the Austin Public Library. RSVP to reserve your spot here. Purchase a copy of In the Dream House here.

The Silence of Marshawn Lynch

Thursday, January 30 | 7:00-9:00pm
Austin Central Library | Special Events Center

The 2019 documentary film Marshawn Lynch: A History explores the silence of a nonconformist NFL star as a means of resistance to racial oppression within the media-sports complex. After a screening of the film, writer / director / producer David Shields will talk with Daron Roberts, former NFL coach and founder of UT’s Center for Sports Leadership and Innovation. RSVP to reserve your spot here. View the film trailer.

The Unbearable Joy of Tacos

Wednesday, April 29 | 7:00-9:00pm
Austin Central Library | Special Events Center

American Tacos: A History and Guide is the new book by Texas Monthly taco editor José Ralat, who will talk with Austin American-Statesman food writer Addie Broyles about the essence of tacos, their evolution in the U.S., and their rise to prominence in American cuisine. Guests will enjoy free taco samples from some of Austin’s finest taco purveyors. Presented with University of Texas Press. Free tickets available starting March 16.


Natalia Sylvester and RUNNING

Saturday, May 9 | 1:00-3:00pm
Austin Central Library | Special Events Center

Austin author Natalia Sylvester launches Running, her first work of YA fiction, starring the Cuban-American teenage daughter of a politician. When Mari’s father decides to run for president, Mari must confront issues of privacy, advocacy, and her own sense of justice. Sylvester will talk with book enthusiast and writer Maya Payne Smart. Free tickets available March 27.


Monday, May 11 | 7:00-9:00pm
Austin Central Library | Special Events Center

H.W. Brands has authored more than a dozen comprehensive American histories detailing figures from Ronald Reagan to Aaron Burr to the rise of early corporate America. His latest book, Haiku History: The American Saga Three Lines at a Time, offers poetic glimpses into the nation’s story, from its birth to the modern moment. Presented in partnership with University of Texas Press. Free tickets available beginning March 30.

Previous atCentral Events

Launched with the Central Library's opening on October 28, 2017, atCentral has featured an accomplished assortment of authors, musicians, artist, filmmakers, and foodies. Previous programs have featured:

Books & Authors

Hanif Abdurraqib (Go Ahead in the Rain: Notes on a Tribe Called Quest)
Sarah Bird (Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen)
Alexandra Bracken (The Darkest Legacy)
Edward Carey (Little)
Brian Catling (The Cloven)
Jack E. Davis (The Gulf: The Making of an American Sea)
Ben Fountain (Beautiful Country Burn Again)
Vivien Goldman (Revenge of the She-Punks)
Andrew Sean Greer (Less)
Stephen Harrigan (Big Wonderful Thing: A History of Texas)
Rachel Kushner (The Mars Room)
Bethany McLean (Saudi America: The Truth About Fracking & How It's Changing the World)
Bryan Mealer (The Kings of Big Spring: God, Oil & One Family's Search for the American Dream)
Liane Moriarty (Nine Perfect Strangers)
Christopher Paolini (The Fork, the Witch, and the Worm)
Asher Price (Earl Campbell: Yards After Contact)
Ann Patchett (The Dutch House)
Joe Nick Patoski (
Austin to ATX: The Hippies, Pickers, Slackers, and Geeks Who Transformed the Capital of Texas)
Asher Price (Earl Campbell: Yards After Contact)
Stephen Harrigan (Big, Wonderful Thing)

Foodies & Chefs

Christina Lane (Dinner Just for Two)
Kate McDermott (Home Cooking)
Alon Shaya (Shaya)


Ex Libris
The Secret Life of Lance Letscher


Bill Callahan
Tameca Jones
Michael Fracasso


Edward Carey
Lance Letscher
Reckonnoiter (roving performances by paper chairs)
Mirror, Mirrored (contemporary collection inspired by fairy tales)

atCentral is made possible by the generous support of ...

To become a supporter or sponsor of atCentral, contact Cecily Sailer at