Ann Hood explores the transformative power of literature in a warm, personal way in her new book, “Morningstar: Growing Up With Books.” She will be at Byrd’s Books in Bethel, on Sunday, Oct. 29, to talk about it.

Hood, who also explored this subject via a different path, in “The Book That Matters Most,” grew up in a Rhode Island mill town, in a home where the love of literature was not fostered. But that didn’t stop her from devouring stacks of books — books that fed her imagination and curiosity.

In “Morningstar,” Hood shares how such books as “The Harrad Experiment” and “The Outsiders” influenced her, while introducing her to topics that could not be discussed at home, according to a release. Later, “The Grapes of Wrath” dramatically influenced her political thinking, while such classics as “Dr. Zhivago” stoked her desire to travel the world.

With insight and charm, Hood showcases the ways in which books gave her life and can transform — even save — our own lives, the release said.

“Morningstar” was called a “love letter to the very act of reading and the power of books to light the way,” in a review by Dani Shapiro, author of “Devotion and Slow Motion.” Shapiro said, “I can think of no better guide than Ann Hood, whose generosity of spirit, courage, humor, gumption, and grace are a powerful reminder that language and story have the capacity to heal, to instruct, and to change our lives. What a mighty little book, so full of heart.”

Hood, who resides in Providence, R.I., is also the author of such best-selling novels as “The Knitting Circle” and “Somewhere Off the Coast of Maine.” Admission to her talk is free, but registration is requested. “Morningstar: Growing Up With Books,” (W. W. Norton & Company), is $22.95 plus tax and may be pre-ordered from Byrd’s Books.

Byrd’s Books, 126 Greenwood Ave., Bethel. Sunday, Oct. 29, 3 p.m. 203-730-2973.