Author Reading

Lynn Powell

 

Framing Innocence: A Mother’s Photographs, A Prosecutor’s Zeal, and a Small Town’s Response

Ten years ago, amateur photographer Cynthia Stewart dropped off film at a drugstore near her home in Ohio. The rolls included two pictures of her 8-year-old daughter, Nora, in the shower. The drug store reported the photos, leading to Stewart’s arrest on child pornography charges. Framing Innocence plumbs the perfect storm of events and people that threatened a loving family in a small American town. Featuring a determined prosecutor, a fundamentalist Christian anti-porn crusader, the local attorneys for whom the case would become a crucible, and the many neighbors – friends and strangers, republicans and democrats – who came together to fight for sanity and justice, Framing Innocence is a riveting and memorable tale.

Event date: 
Thursday, November 17, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Gerald Nicosia

 

One and Only: The Untold Story of On the Road

Beat historian Gerald Nicosia spent years looking for Lu Anne Henderson, the woman who started Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady on their journey, because he knew that if not for her, the two men would have never taken the road trip that became On the Road. Using his exclusive 34,000 word taped interview with Henderson as his primary source, and including 55 rare archival photographs, Nicosia tells the story of the beautiful 15-year-old-girl who loved both men and taught them how to love each other.

 

“An unsung teen-heroine of the time, Lu Anne Henderson, the young woman on whom the character ‘Marylou’ in On the Road is based, finally has her say. The book is an intimate and revealing portrait…” – Anne Waldman

Event date: 
Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Caitlin Kelly

 

Malled: My Unintentional Career in Retail

In 2006, Caitlin Kelly was laid off from her job at the New York Daily News. After a year of fruitlessly seeking another journalism job, in 2007 she was relieved to be hired by a North Face clothing store located in an upscale shopping mall. In this memoir of her subsequent two years, she recounts her experiences serving some of the country’s wealthiest shoppers and surviving three holiday seasons, two black Fridays, and Christmas Eve. Described by biographer Meryl Gordon as “rollicking and riveting,” Malled takes you behind the cash wrap and the stockroom doors.

 

Event date: 
Sunday, November 13, 2011 - 4:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Sue Schell

 

A Simplicity Revolution: Finding Happiness in the New Reality

In A Simplicity Revolution, Sue Schell offers a poignant and revealing account of America’s Boom and Bust decade, its causes, and its effect on our happiness. Schell says, “Few of us expected the economic slowdown would be more than a pause. No doubt some of our recent pain resulted from Americans’ need to ‘supersize’ everything, causing a personal debt implosion when millions of people lost their jobs, and some, ultimately, their homes. Our country began living in a heightened state of anxiety over the possibility that America’s best days could be behind us.” A Simplicity Revolution is an accessible, honest, humorous and thought-provoking look at the emotions, pains, and lessons learned during this time of transformation.

Event date: 
Friday, November 11, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Katherine Scott Nelson, J.M. Redmann, Anne Laughlin

 

Katherine Scott Nelson

Have You Seen Me

J.M. Redmann

Anne Laughlin

Women of the Mean Streets: Lesbian Noir

Tonight’s program presents new queer fiction. Katherine Scott Nelson is a Chicago writer whose work has been featured on Fiction at Work and The Rumpus. Her new novella, Have You Seen Me, introduces high school friends Chris & Vyv. Since Vyv is the only punk girl, and Chris is the only queer kid in their small Midwestern town, they’ve always depended on each other for support. But when Vyv runs away, their friendship is put to the test. Lambda Literary Award-winning writer J.M. Redmann is the author of six Micky Knight mysteries, the newest of which, Water Mark, was released in September 2010, and editor of the new anthology Women of the Mean Streets: Lesbian Noir. Joining Nelson and Redmann will be Women of the Mean Streets contributor Anne Laughlin, the Chicago-based author of the books Veritas and Sometimes Quickly, and the forthcoming Runaway.

Event date: 
Thursday, November 10, 2011 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Ruth Goring, Lynn Fitzgerald, Erika Mikkalo

 

Tonight we present three outstanding Chicago-area poets and writers. Ruth Goring is the author of the collection Yellow Doors and her poetry has appeared In Calyx, Rhino, and Chicago Quarterly Review, among other publications. She is a senior manuscript editor for the University of Chicago Press and teaches advanced editing at the University of Chicago Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies. Erikka Mikkalo is the recipient of a Tobias Wolff Award for short fiction, and has had work appear in Another Chicago Magazine, the Chicago Review, and other publications. Lynn Fitzgerald’s work has appeared in Kalliope, After Hours, and the Anthology of Chicago Poets. She is an adjunct instructor of English for the City Colleges of Chicago.

Event date: 
Wednesday, November 9, 2011 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Caroline Preston

The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt

In her new book, scrapbooker, archivist and novelist (Jackie by Josie, Gatsby’s Girl) Caroline Preston creatively uses the scrapbook form to reveal the story of a spirited, ambitious heroine. Culled from the author’s personal collection of ephemera and memorabilia, The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt follows Frankie, a young aspiring writer, from 1920s Vassar to Greenwich Village to Paris, where she rents a garret apartment above Shakespeare & Company bookstore. “The vintage scrapbook is an effective vehicle for an entertaining coming-of-age story steeped in the pop culture of the Roaring Twenties. A highly enjoyable read…” – Library Journal.

Event date: 
Friday, November 4, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Editor Kathie Bergquist and Contributors Sharon Bridgforth, Goldie Goldbloom, Robert McDonald, Achy Obejas, and Gregg Shapiro

Windy City Queer: LGBTQ Dispatches from the Third Coast Release Party

Chicago’s contributions to LGBTQ literature have been invaluable yet largely
uncelebrated over the last century. This groundbreaking anthology charts a map of queer
Chicago and showcases its thriving urban arts community, which boasts a unique history,
legacy, and sensibility deeply rooted in the urban Midwest. For tonight’s program, editor
Kathie Bergquist is joined by contributors to the book: an outstanding array of award-
winning poets and writers culled from Chicago’s queer literary landscape.
Refreshments will be served.

Event date: 
Thursday, November 3, 2011 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Gina Frangello, Cris Mazza, Susan Solomon, and Kate Zambreno

Men Undressed and Green Girl Release Party

Female sexuality has long been explored by groundbreaking male writers, from
D.H. Lawrence to Philip Roth. Tonight, join a host of women writers as they imagine all
things sexual from the point of view of male characters. Playful, erotic, dark, funny, and
sometimes raunchy, the stories in Men Undressed are by acclaimed and emerging writers
who bare all. Kate Zambreno’s novel Green Girl is a Bell Jar for today: an existential
story about a young American in London who drifts between meaningless jobs, followed
by a mysterious narrator who is by turns violent and maternal. Join Zambreno and editors
and contributors to Men Undressed, for a release party celebrating both titles.

Event date: 
Friday, October 28, 2011 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Soraya Miré

The Girl with Three Legs

At age 13, Somalian Soraya Miré was forced by her mother to suffer the brutal
cultural rite of female genital mutilation. Amnesty International estimates that more than
130 million women worldwide have been affected by some form of FGM, with over
three million girls at risk each year. For Miré, the repercussions were far reaching,
affecting her sense of self and her interpersonal relationships. But according to
Miré, “abuse is not destiny.” A recipient of the UN’s Humanitarian Award, today Miré is
a human rights activist who has been featured on Oprah, Nightline, and other programs
and is a living testament to the empowerment of women. The Girl with Three Legs offers
a searing exposé of the culture of FGM, but is ultimately a tale of courage and hope.

Event date: 
Sunday, October 23, 2011 - 4:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Sappho's Salon

Sappho’s Salon: A Provocative Night of Lesbian Diversions
Featuring Kelli Strickland and DJ SpinNikki
$7-10 Sliding scale includes food and wine

This month’s installment of our popular salon night for lesbians and their friends
features actor Kelli Strickland, performing her solo show, We’ve Got a Badge for That.
Recalling tales of near death experience, puppy love, pyromania, and peach schnapps,
We’ve Got a Badge for That is one girl’s story of the scouts. Strickland, perhaps
best known for her role as young Hannah in the feature film Hannah Free, is the
former director of Bailiwick’s Lesbian Theater Initiative, and a faculty member of the
Department of Fine and Performing Arts at Loyola University. Joining Strickland is
Sappho’s house DJ SpinNikki, playing an eclectic array of indie rock, soul, electronica
and world music, before and after sets. Proceeds benefit the artists and the Women’s
Voices Fund.

Event date: 
Saturday, October 22, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Bonnie Nadzam

Lamb

Recovering from his failed marriage and the loss of his father, David Lamb is
depressed and struggling with his paradoxical nature; he is deeply self-centered and
mendacious yet oddly sensitive and reflective. Upon a chance meeting with an awkward,
outcast eleven-year-old girl, Tommie, David convinces himself that he can elude the
destructive fate that awaits her from a childhood lacking direction, and in the process,
redeem himself through his supposed act of good will. What develops is a compelling
and unsettling story of friendship, love, and manipulation set against the feuding
landscapes of urban decay and the promise of the American West. Of this brilliant and
harrowing debut, Aimee Bender raves, “Bonnie Nadzam manages to write gorgeous
prose about people and sky and mountains while still creating tension and suspense on
the level of a thriller, while also walking us into complex and delicate and unsettling
moral territory with brilliant subtlety and insight. Lamb is a remarkable debut, by a writer
to watch.”

Event date: 
Friday, October 21, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

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