The meeting room of the Chilmark Public Library was filled to capacity Wednesday night, with guests spilling over into the adjacent children’s area and front hallway of the building, as Vineyarders gathered to hear readings from Paris Press’s latest collection, Sisters: An Anthology.

The event was one of many Sisters Celebrations taking place across the country to celebrate the publication of the book, which features stories of sisterhood by, among others, Margaret Atwood, Barbara Kingsolver, Alice Walker and Dorothy Parker.

Carol Gilligan. — Ivy Ashe

Authors Jessica Harris, Carol Gilligan and Rose Styron, along with Paris Press director and Sisters co-editor Jan Freeman, read from selected poems, essays and letters. Mrs. Harris, a culinary historian and author of 11 books, including The Martha’s Vineyard Table, began her piece by noting that she herself does not have a sister. This, as she recalled, led to attempts to recreate the special sibling relationship with a friend, who kindly informed the young Mrs. Harris that “she already had a sister” and did not need another.

Jessica Harris. — Ivy Ashe

Mrs. Harris read portions of Alice Walker’s short story Everyday Use.

Jan Freeman
Jan Freeman, co-editor of sisters: an anthology. — Ivy Ashe

Mrs. Gilligan, an acclaimed psychologist best known for her book In a Different Voice, elected to read four of the book’s poems, including one by Joan Baez, and said that she had chosen the poems because they “covered all the bases” of sisterhood, from childhood pranks to adolescent envy to adult friendship and, finally, the sorrow of losing a sibling.

Mrs. Styron, a journalist and author from Vineyard Haven, concluded the readings with a letter by Dorothy Parker written to her sister while Ms. Parker was living abroad.

Rose Styron
Rose Styron. — Ivy Ashe

The evening ended with a sing-along of the Rosemary Clooney song Sisters, and a book signing.