Join us for a conversation with Westchester authors Jacqueline Friedland, Reyna Marder Gentin, and Dan Schorr, moderated by Lynda Cohen Loigman. Together we’ll explore what inspires their work and discover what drove each of these local Westchester writers to become novelists.
You'll also learn more about UJA's work during these challenging times and our response to ever-evolving issues related to the pandemic.
Jacqueline Friedland graduated Magna Cum Laude from both the University of Pennsylvania and NYU Law School. She practiced as a commercial litigator at the New York law firms of Debevoise & Plimpton, LLP and Boies, Schiller & Flexner, LLP. After determining that office life did not suit her, Jacqueline began teaching legal writing and lawyering skills at the Benjamin Cardozo School of Law in Manhattan and working on her first book in her limited spare time.
Finally deciding to embrace her passion and pursue writing full time, Jacqueline returned to school to earn her Master of Fine Arts from Sarah Lawrence College, graduating from the program in 2016. She is the author of multi-award winning novels, Trouble the Water and That's Not a Thing.
When not writing, Jacqueline is an avid reader of all things fiction. She loves to exercise, watch movies with her family, listen to music, make lists, and dream about exotic vacations.
She lives in Westchester, New York, with her husband, four children, and two very bossy canines.
In the fall of 2014, Reyna left her practice as a criminal appellate attorney with a nonprofit public defender’s office where she'd worked for many years. It was time to try something new. What began as a lark when a friend asked Reyna to join her in a writing class at The Writing Institute at Sarah Lawrence College has turned into her passion.
Reyna’s first novel, Unreasonable Doubts, was published by She Writes Press in 2018 and named a finalist in the Women’s Fiction Writers Association Star Award for debut fiction. William Landay, best-selling author of Defending Jacob, called the novel “an intriguing blend of romance and legal suspense from a new writer to watch.”
In 2021, Reyna took a foray into children’s literature. TouchPoint Press published her middle grade novel My Name Is Layla, a story about dyslexia, resilience, and having compassion for oneself and others. My Name Is Layla is for young readers — and for all readers — who are inspired by the idea of a kinder world. School Library Journal said, “Layla’s struggles at school and home are authentically depicted and readers who face their own challenges will relate.” With Both Are True, Reyna has returned to women’s fiction, the law, and New York City. If you love these three as much as she does, this novel is for you.
Reyna is married to Pierre Gentin, whom she’s known since her high school days on Long Island. Their two children, Ariella and Micah, are the light of their lives.
Dan Schorr is a sexual misconduct investigator at his firm, Dan Schorr, LLC, and an adjunct professor at Fordham Law School, where he teaches a course on sexual misconduct and domestic violence. Previously, he served as a New York sex crimes prosecutor, the inspector general for the City of Yonkers, and an adjunct law professor with Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. He has been a regular television legal analyst for Good Morning America, CNN, Fox News Channel, Law & Crime Network, and elsewhere. Schorr holds a B.A. and M.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.
He lives in White Plains, New York, with his wife and two children. Final Table is his first novel.
Lynda Cohen Loigman grew up in Longmeadow, Massachusetts. She received a B.A. in English and American Literature from Harvard College and a J.D. from Columbia Law School. Her debut novel, The Two-Family House, was a USA Today best seller and a nominee for the Goodreads 2016 Choice Awards in Historical Fiction. Her second novel, The Wartime Sisters, was selected as a Woman's World Book Club pick and a Best Book of 2019 by Real Simple Magazine. The Matchmaker’s Library, her third novel, will be published by St. Martin’s Press in the fall of 2022.
Andy Baevsky, Mindy Bass, Laurie Brecher, Marci Cohen, Michelle Cohen, Robin Eiseman, Vivian Fried, Allison Friedland, Ellen Gelboim, Michelle Gewanter, Beth Grafman, Laura Green, Michele Gregson, Amy Hughson, Cheryl Kabalkin Greenstein, Ellen Kaidanow, Arlene Kleinberg, Randi Kreisler, Karen Loewentheil, Kelly Mamaysky, Abby Mendelsohn, Abbey Moses, David Perlmutter, Bettina Prober, Beth Rosen, Karen Roth, Ellen Silver, Elese Silverman, Hedy Simpson, Jocelyn Sontag, Stephanie Spiegel, Tracy Stein, Marjorie Troob, Robyn Troob, Mindy Unger, Debbie Young