SOLD OUT: Margaret Renkl, author of The Comfort of Crows, in conversation with Margaret Roach

To celebrate Margaret Renkl’s latest book, The Comfort of Crows, join her and garden writer Margaret Roach for a lively webinar conversation and open Q&A about what they both love so dearly, and what’s at the heart of the new book: the intimate interconnectedness of the creatures and plants of their gardens.

Their gardens are very different—one wildish in Nashville, the other a mix of wild and not so in the Hudson Valley of New York. The two Margarets have much common ground, though (besides their first names, followed by five-letter last names starting with “R,” and writing weekly New York Times columns).

The world outside is what informs their lives, and their writing, and they share a strong commitment to managing their beloved landscapes with ecology front-of-mind, in support of birds and other animals.

Join them to talk about the new book, which Ann Patchett calls “a howling love letter to the world,” and about their shared passions. Bring your questions!

This ticketed event will be held online via Zoom webinar. It will start at 7:00 p.m. Eastern time / 6:00 p.m. Central time. You will receive a link to the event on week in advance, and then again 24 hours in advance, as well as the morning of the event.


Please note there are two ticket types for this event.

  • A $40.50 ticket which includes a signed copy of The Comfort of Crows , with shipping via media mail, and access to the webinar.
  • A $20.00 ticket which includes access to the webinar ONLY. (There is no book included with this ticket) Note: All revenue from webinar-only tickets will benefit Homegrown National Park. This nonprofit was founded by University of Delaware ecologist Doug Tallamy, who has done so much to educate us all about the natural world and how we can all help support it, one garden at a time.

About Margaret Roach:

Margaret Roach is a longtime garden writer-first for Newsday newspaper, then for Martha Stewart Living (where she became the company's EVP Editorial Director), and the last four seasons for The New York Times. She also creates a website, podcast, and weekly newsletter called A Way to Garden, the title of her 1989 book that was reissued in 2019 in an all-new edition. Margaret has written several other books, including in 2013, The Backyard Parables, about which Eat Pray Love author, Elizabeth Gilbert, said: "As a passionate, hopeful and often self-delusional gardener (the only kind of gardener there is!), I loved this gorgeous book. Margaret Roach writes with intelligence, compassion, and most of all - sanity. Her work is a blessing."

About Margaret Margaret Renkl:

Margaret Renkl is the author of The Comfort of Crows: A Backyard Year, out October 24, 2023. Her earlier books are Late Migrations: A Natural History of Love and Loss and Graceland, At Last: Notes on Hope and Heartache From the American South. She is a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, where her essays appear weekly. The founding editor of Chapter 16, a daily literary publication of Humanities Tennessee, and a graduate of Auburn University and the University of South Carolina, she lives in Nashville.

About The Comfort of Crows:

From the beloved New York Times opinion writer and bestselling author of Late Migrations comes a "howling love letter to the world" (Ann Patchett): a luminous book that traces the passing of seasons, personal and natural.

In The Comfort of Crows, Margaret Renkl presents a literary devotional: fifty-two chapters that follow the creatures and plants in her backyard over the course of a year. As we move through the seasons--from a crow spied on New Year's Day, its resourcefulness and sense of community setting a theme for the year, to the lingering bluebirds of December, revisiting the nest box they used in spring--what develops is a portrait of joy and grief: joy in the ongoing pleasures of the natural world, and grief over winters that end too soon and songbirds that grow fewer and fewer.

Along the way, we also glimpse the changing rhythms of a human life. Grown children, unexpectedly home during the pandemic, prepare to depart once more. Birdsong and night-blooming flowers evoke generations past. The city and the country where Renkl raised her family transform a little more with each passing day. And the natural world, now in visible flux, requires every ounce of hope and commitment from the author--and from us. For, as Renkl writes, "radiant things are bursting forth in the darkest places, in the smallest nooks and deepest cracks of the hidden world."

With fifty-two original color artworks by the author's brother, Billy Renkl, The Comfort of Crows is a lovely and deeply moving book from a cherished observer of the natural world.



Event date: 
Tuesday, November 7, 2023 - 6:00pm
Event address: 
Virtual event: Zoom