Author Reading

Lucy Jane Bledsoe

The Big Bang Symphony

 

In her new book, Lucy Jane Bledsoe (Biting the Apple, The Ice Cave) illuminates the lives of three women thrown together by circumstance in remote Anarctica. In this extreme landscape, personalities, emotions, and connections reach heightened extremes. As the women become increasingly involved in one another's lives, they face challenges they never thought they'd meet and ultimately find a redemption that only the harsh beauty of Antarctica can engender. Bledsoe is widely published, a multiple award-winning, four-time Lambda Literary Award nominated author of fiction, science writing, and children's books. The Big Bang Symphony is her twelfth book and fourth novel.

Event date: 
Wednesday, May 19, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Sappho's Salon: A Provocative Night of Lesbian Diversions

Featuring Sapna Kumar, M. Shelly Conner, and DJ SpinNikki

$7-$10 sliding scale includes food and wine

 

Join us for our monthly salon night for lesbians and their friends. Tonight's salon features funny lady Sapna Kumar and writer M. Shelly Conner. Kumar just shot Logo's One Night Stand Up in San Francisco and was a regional finalist on Last Comic Standing 4. Her comedy is about interacting with her crazy Indian parents, surviving the recession while unemployed, and being an entirely-too-single lesbian. M. Shelly Conner's comedy sketches have been performed at Second City and the 2007 Black Playwrights Festival. She's currently working on a novel that explores race, class, gender, and sexuality in three generations of an African American family. DJ SpinNikki plays us in and out of sets with an eclectic array of indie, electronica, dance, soul, and world music. Cover charge benefits the artists and the Women's Voices Fund.

Event date: 
Saturday, May 15, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Zoe Fishman

Balancing Acts

 

In her charming debut novel, Zoe Fishman tells the story of four women who help one another balance their former dreams with their present lives through the power of friendship and yoga. After their ten-year college reunion, each realizes she's fallen short of achieving her college ambitions. Charlie, seemingly the most successful of the group, invites her friends to participate in a weekly class at her yoga studio. It's not long before each is forced to confront her inner demons and make the changes that allow her dreams to be renewed and realized.

Event date: 
Friday, May 14, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Laurie Abraham

The Husbands & Wives Club

 

For more than a year, journalist Laurie Abraham sat in with five troubled couples as they underwent the searing process of group marriage therapy. Published as the New York Times Magazine's cover story, the resulting article, "Can This Marriage Be Saved?" generated intense reader response and received the Award for Excellence in Journalism from the American Psychoanalytic Association. Though the article allowed Abraham to focus on only one couple, her new book, which grew out of the article and the reaction it inspired, tells the moving, fascinating story of all five couples.

Event date: 
Thursday, May 13, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Amy Peele

Aunt Mary's Guide to Raising Children the Old Fashioned Way

 

In her new memoir, Second City alum Amy Peele reflects on her hardscrabble 1960s childhood in Indiana and the laughter and love that kept her large and boisterous Irish-Catholic family together in the wake of her father's abandonment. Bring your mother along, and join Peele and her own mother for this special event celebrating the bonds of family.

Event date: 
Sunday, May 9, 2010 - 4:30pm to 6:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Sister Spit

Sister Spit: The Next Generation, hosted by Michelle Tea

$10 cover charge

Join us as we welcome the legendary, raucous, and rowdy queer traveling variety show! This season's vanload of queertastic brilliance includes literary luminary Michelle Tea, legendary trans film director Silas Howard (Tribe 8, By Hook or By Crook), graphic novelist and anti-racist activist Elisha Lim, slam poet and performance artist Lenelle Moise, trans psychic memoirist Len Plass, 'zinester/portraitist/graphic novelist Nicole J Georges, and Power Point–loving shapeshifter Annie Danger. Cover charge benefits the artists.

Event date: 
Friday, May 7, 2010 - 9:00pm to 11:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Minal Hajratwala

Leaving India: My Family’s Journey from Five Villages to Five Continents
In her 2010 Lambda Literary Award finalist-groundbreaking debut, San Francisco-based queer writer and activist Minal Hajratwala mixes history, memoir and reportage, tracing her family’s history from the beginning of the twentieth century and across five continents. Delving into the relationships between the personal choices and historical forces (colonialism, apartheid, Gandhi’s Salt March, American immigration policy) that shaped her family’s experiences, bringing to light the epic story of the Indian diaspora.

Event date: 
Wednesday, April 28, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Allegra Huston

Love Child: A Memoir of Family Lost & Found
 

After the death of her mother in a freak tragedy, then four-year-old Allegra Huston was directed into a hotel room with the words “this is your father,” and hence met, for the first time, the acclaimed movie director John Huston. She recounts a childhood shuttled between relatives (including older sister Anjelica who was already an accomplished actress) and across continents. At the age of twelve, Huston weathered another blow when her stepmother revealed that her biological father was not, in fact, Huston, but British historian John Julius Norwich who, like Allegra’s mother, was married at the time of their affair. In her beautifully written, forensically honest story of a tumultuous childhood, Allegra Huston weaves the romantic struggle of her mother’s short life into her own story, a parallel, though different, search for love.

Event date: 
Thursday, April 29, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Contributors Pinkham, Layug, Kast & Walker

Contributors B. E. Pinkham, Susan T. Layug, Maggie Kast and Carolyn Walker
Gravity Pulls You In: Perspectives on Parenting Children on the Autism Spectrum
Join us for a reading by local and regional contributors to the anthology Gravity Pulls You In. View, through their eyes, the universe of autism – its marvels, chaos, and life-changing impact. In this collection, parents raising children on the autism spectrum explore their lives in the context of autism’s own special gravity, discovering what’s important and what they find centering, in slice-of-life depictions that are a refreshing departure from the usual diagnosis/grief/acceptance arc of many autism accounts.

Event date: 
Sunday, April 25, 2010 - 4:30pm to 6:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Sones de Mexico Ensemble

 

Fiesta Mexicana

Join us for a special pared-down, unplugged performance by two-time Grammy-nominated Chicago musical group Sones de Mexico Ensemble, celebrating their new release, Fiesta Mexicana. Fiesta Mexicana offers something new to a generation of kids growing up in a globalized world: a bilingual double-album for the 21st century, featuring special guests Ella Jenkins and Dan Zanes. All ages welcome.

Event date: 
Saturday, April 24, 2010 - 10:00am to 11:00am
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Lisa Shannon

A Thousand Sisters: My Journey Into the Worst Place on Earth to Be a Woman 
When an episode of Oprah awoke businesswoman Lisa Shannon to the suffering of women in the Congo, she knew she had to do something. A Thousand Sisters is the moving chronicle of raising money to make a difference for Congolese women, only to discover that it is she who is profoundly changed by them. Tracing her life from an average American to an unexpected activist and founder of the organization Run for Congo Women, Shannon’s story is one of adventure, danger, hope and healing.

Event date: 
Friday, April 23, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Katherine Shonk

Happy Now?

            Chicago writer Shonk’s new novel looks at love, grief and recovery through the eyes of Claire Kessler, a modern young woman living in Evanston who endures a stream of Internet and speed-dating debacles, until she meets Jay, almost perfect and truly kind. And then on Valentine’s Day he kills himself. At times both heart breaking and darkly comic, Shonk’s deftly told tale avoids melodrama. As Rachel Roseblitt wrote in Elle magazine, “Anyone who has passed up a popcorn car-chase flick in favor of a good indie knows how powerful a simple, skillfully told, character-driven story can be. Katherine Shonk does, and Happy Now?, her first novel, is proof…” Shonk’s first book is the critically acclaimed story collection, The Red Passports.

Event date: 
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Sappho's Salon - Alix Dobkin

Sappho’s Salon: A Provocative Night of Lesbian Diversions

Featuring Alix Dobkin and DJ SpinNikki

$7-10 sliding scale includes food and wine

            Before she was a lesbian music legend, before she was a ground breaking lesbian activist and cultural worker, Alix Dobkin was a teenaged, guitar-totin’, card-carrying comrade in the folk music communities of Philadelphia and Greenwich Village circa the 1950s. In her new memoir, My Red Blood, the woman who pioneered lesbian music with her 1972 release, “Lavender Jane Loves Women” recounts her coming-of-age amidst the lefty politicos and beatniks in the East Coast underground. At tonight’s very special Sappho’s Salon, Dobkin will share excerpts of her life story while regaling us with song. DJ SpinNikki will play us in and out of tonight’s performance. All proceeds benefit the artists and the Women’s Voices Fund.

 

Event date: 
Saturday, April 17, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Poetry Reading

Full Moon on K Street: Poems About Washington DC
Featuring Gregg Shapiro, Toni Asante Lightfoot, Rebecca Villarreal, David Trinidad and Deborah Darr

Co-sponsored by Poets & Writers Magazine

Join us for a reading by contributors to the new anthology, Full Moon on K Street. Featuring more than 100 contemporary poems, this collection captures DC’s unique sense of place, from the monuments and parks,  to the bus stations, from go-go music to chili half-smokes, and the city’s many moods, from celebratory to angry to fiercely political; the result comprises a love letter – with all the complexity that love implies – to our nation’s capitol city.

 

Event date: 
Thursday, April 15, 2010 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

Nancy Garfinkel - Recipe Club

Loyalty, loss, and the ties that bind – these are the ingredients of The Recipe Club, a new novel that combines the story of a friendship told via e-mails, childhood letters, third-person narration, photos, illustrations and more than 80

Event date: 
Friday, April 9, 2010 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
60640 Chicago
us

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