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The public relations expert at Reed College has a surprising background, and a new book as well

COURTESY OF NINA JOHNSON - Kevin Myers has been at Reed College for fourteen years, working as college spokesperson and community liaison. This past July, his debut novel Hidden Falls was published by Beaufort Books.Reed College's Communications Director, or College Spokesperson – Kevin T. Myers – faithfully attended the monthly meetings of the Woodstock Neighborhood Association, the Woodstock Community Business Association, and the Woodstock Stakeholder Group, for years in his role as college community liaison. But no one then knew that he also had a history of being a stand-up comic and comedy writer.

In fact, Myers has been featured in his more distant past on the Comedy Channel and on "20/20", and his jokes have been used at colleges, clubs, and even on Jay Leno's Tonight Show, and on Broadway.

In July of this year Myers wrote his debut novel, "Hidden Falls", published by Beaufort Books. Summer book tours were planned, but were postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Hidden Falls" takes place in New Bedford, Massachusetts, and is rich in description of characters and places which resemble the context of Myer's New England upbringing in Peabody, Massachusetts, and his years in his 20s in Boston.

When the father of the main character, Michael Quinn, dies and Quinn flies from Portland, Oregon, to Boston, and then drives to New Bedford for the funeral, he finds himself navigating old, difficult, knotty family and friend relationships. At one point, in all of the family and neighborhood gatherings, he is handed an unopened letter held in secret for two years by one of his father's friends – and the letter leads him to harrowing information about his father's past.

Humor is sprinkled throughout the novel, making the book "a good read" during this pandemic, when everyone can use some good laughs – as well as complete absorption into a complex father-son relationship, and even some tentative romance, and murky mystery.

Throughout the novel one is left wondering how much of it is potentially autobiographical detail, and how much is the creation of Myers' imagination. Michael Quinn, the main character, is a journalist and is romantically unattached after a divorce – reflecting Myers' own professional and personal history.

Myers has worked as a journalist and editor in newsrooms from New Hampshire to Alaska. In th e 49th state, he ran the Capital City Weekly. In higher education he has been a speechwriter, a media figure, involved in government, and a public relations liaison. He has been at Reed College for fourteen years.

Myers is affable and modest, but one of his posts on social media reveals a rather high-profile explanation for his path into successful comedy. "Throughout my life I've been very fortunate to be surrounded by talented and supportive people, like comedy legend Judd Apatow, who said: ' "Hidden Falls" is as if Dennis Lehane and David Sedaris got together to write a romantic comedy. It's intelligent, charming, and the perfect combination of funny and thrilling'."

To purchase "Hidden Falls" for yourself, or to learn more about Myers' writing, his favorite authors, and more, go online – www.kevintmyers.com And, to read his moving account of his childhood, in his "This I Believe" essay on compassion, see – thisibelieve.org/essay/139925


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