On Wednesday, December 8, the Woodland Hills Interaction Series hosted award winning author Deesha Philyaw. Students in Mr. Maloney's English 11 classes and the book club participated in a Q&A with Ms. Philyaw after reading and studying her book "The Secret Lives of Church Ladies". This collection won the 2021 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction and was a finalist for the 2020 National Book Award for Fiction. Ms. Philyaw is currently adapting "The Secret Lives of Church Ladies" for HBO Max. Special thanks to Mr. Maloney and White Whale Bookstore for helping us get copies of the book.
The Woodland Hills Interaction Series (WHIS) started in 2013. The WHIS was created by library media specialist Kevin McGuire and instructional technology coach Jason Coleman with the goal of providing first-class interaction opportunities for students at Woodland Hills High School.
During our first eight seasons, the WHIS has personally hosted such notable guests as Jennifer Egan (Pulitzer Prize Winner), Sara Shepard (N.Y. Times Bestseller), Tayari Jones (N.Y. Times Bestseller), Colum McCann (National Book Award Winner/Academy Award nominated writer), Elizabeth Strout (Pulitzer Prize Winner), Rachael Lippincott (N.Y. Times Bestseller), (Dr. Sheri Fink (Pulitzer Prize Winner), Terrance Hayes (National Book Award winner/MacArthur Fellow), Jesse Andrews (N.Y. Times Bestseller), Dr. Cyril Wecht, S.L. Price (Sports Illustrated Senior Writer), and Robert Bilheimer (Academy Award nominated director). Additionally, the WHIS has also hosted local writer Dave Newman, poet Jim Daniels, EPA Director Barnes Johnson, nationally syndicated cartoonist Joe Wos, Pittsburgh icon Rick Sebak, and U.S. Ambassador Bryant Salter.