Hear, meet author at library on October 3rd


Meet Martha Conway, the author of ‘The Underground River’.

Presented at the Switzerland County Public Library, at 205 Ferry Street in Vevay, he book talk and signing will take place this Tuesday, October 3rd at 6:30 p.m.

Martha Conway was a visitor to the Switzerland County Historical Museum and “Life on the Ohio” River History Museum while researching her newest novel, ‘The Underground River’.

From her website:

Set aboard a nineteenth century riverboat theater, this is the moving, page-turning story of a charmingly frank and naive seamstress who is blackmailed into saving runaways on the Underground Railroad, jeopardizing her freedom, her livelihood, and a new love.

It’s 1838, and May Bedloe works as a costume designer for her cousin, the famous actress Comfort Vertue-until their steamboat sinks on the Ohio River. Though they both survive, both must find new employment. Comfort is hired to give lectures by noted abolitionist, Flora Howard, and May finds work on a small flatboat, Hugo and Helena’s Floating Theatre, as it cruises the border between the northern states and the southern slave-holding states.


Martha Conway is the author of several novels, including ‘Thieving Forest’, which won the North American Book Award in Historical Fiction and an Independent Publishers Book Award. It has been called “extraordinary” by the Akron Beacon Journal and “hypnotic” by Kirkus Reviews.

Her first novel was nominated for an Edgar Award, and her short fiction has appeared in the Iowa Review, Mississippi Review, The Quarterly, Carolina Quarterly, and other publications. Martha has reviewed fiction for the San Francisco Chronicle and the Iowa Review, and is a recipient of a California Arts Council fellowship in Creative Writing. Her novel Sugarland was named one of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2016.

Martha is an instructor of creative writing at Stanford University’s Continuing Studies Program and U.C. Berkeley Extension. She received her BA from Vassar College in History and English, and her MA in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. Born and raised in northern Ohio, she now lives in San Francisco with her family, where the fog reminds her of lake-effect cloud cover in Cleveland.

Martha Conway’s presentation is being co-sponsored by the Switzerland County Historical Society and the Switzerland County Public Library.