Author Reading

Nina Sankovitch

Tolstoy and the Purple Chair: My Year of Magical Reading

            What’s the value of a good book? It’s a simple question, but one we rarely ask ourselves. After losing her oldest sister to cancer, lifelong reader Nina Sankovitch found herself running faster and faster away from sorrow and grief. But on her 46th birthdaythe same age her sister had been when she diedSankovitch returned to books for comfort, escape, and introspection. During her year of magical reading, she determined to read a book a day for a year, despite the demands of travel and a hectic family life. Tolstoy and the Purple Chair recounts Sankovitch’s immersion into a world rich with story and the unexpected connections she made there with books and authors. Reading, it turns out, can be the ultimate therapy.

 

“Sankovitch champions
Event date: 
Friday, July 15, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Bonnie Jo Campbell

Once Upon a River

            In a richly layered tale of love, hardship, self-exploration, and fortitude, National Book Award finalist Campbell (American Salvage) introduces the unforgettable character of Margo Crane. After the death of her grandfather, Margo’s beautiful, alcoholic mother disappears without a trace. When a shocking transgression sets in motion a series of events culminating in the murder of Margo’s father, 16-year-old Margo grabs her rifle, hops into her grandfather’s boat, and begins a journey down Michigan’s Stark River in search of her lost mother. Marked by rich prose and a fast-moving, gripping plot, Once Upon a River leaves the reader with a palpable sense of the savage beauty of the American landscape and its indelible counterpart in the recesses of the human spirit.

 

“A glorious novel, destined to entrance and provoke.” Booklist, starred review

Event date: 
Thursday, July 14, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Samuel Park

Samuel Park

This Burns My Heart

            1960s South Korea was a postwar nation in a state of turmoil and transition, existing in the gap between a traditional agrarian society and a modern, industrial one. At 22, Soo-Ja is similarly caught between her family’s expectations and her own ideas for the future. Born into a culture that pits her desires against her duties, she must fight to reconcile the life she always wanted with the life she is forced to live. Equal parts classic romance, page-turning literary drama, and cultural history, This Burns My Heart asks poignant questions about life, love, and the paths we take. Samuel Park is an Assistant Professor of English at Columbia College Chicago and author of the novella Shakespeare’s Sonnets.

 

This Burns My Heart is quietly stunning – a soft, fierce story that lingers in the mind.”

Audrey Niffenegger

Event date: 
Wednesday, July 13, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Madeleine Roux

Allison Hewitt is Trapped

            Allison Hewitt and her five bookselling colleagues are trapped together at the bookstore when the zombie outbreak hits. Using her wits, her laptop, and the military’s emergency wireless network, Allison reaches out for help through her blog. But as the reality of the situation sinks in, Allison’s blog becomes a harrowing account of her edge-of-the-seat adventures, as she and her companions fight their way through ravenous zombies and sometimes even more dangerous humans.

 

“Madeline Roux manages to answer the eternal question all of us must ask ourselves eventually: When the zombie apocalypse comes (and it will come), how will I handle it?”

--Christine Warren, author of The Others series.

Event date: 
Friday, July 8, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Andrea Hairston and Pan Morigan

Andrea Hairston

Redwood and Wildfire

Pan Morigan

Wildblue

            In Hairston’s speculative novel, Redwood, an African-American woman, and Aidan, a Seminole-Irish man, journey from the haunted swamplands of Georgia to “the City of the Future,” Chicago, circa the 1893 World’s Fair. Gifted performers and hoodoo conjurors, they struggle to call up the wondrous world they imagine, in city streets and front parlors, the stage and the screen. Living in a world stacked against them, Redwood and Aiden’s power and talent cause both torment and joy. Their search for a place to be who they want to beblues singers, filmmakers, haints, and healersis an exhilarating adventure. Author Andrea Hairston is Professor of Theater and African-American Studies at Smith College, and artistic director of Chrysalis Theater. For tonight’s event she will be joined by musician Pan Morgan, who will be performing original music inspired by the novel.

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

Mandy Van Deven

Hey, Shorty!: A Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment and Gender-based Violence

Hey Shorty! provides a narrative account of how teen women of color in New
York City have organized over the past ten years to end gender-based violence against
girls, women, and LGBTQ folks in public spaces. At tonight’s event, co-author and
activist Mandy Van Deven will read from the book and facilitate a conversation about
street harassment, sexual harassment in schools, and strategies to increase safety.
Additionally, Van Deven hopes to promote her goal of building connections among
organizations and individuals doing anti-violence work, and encouraging everyone to
challenge harassment, violence, and the harmful assumptions that undermine their
perpetuation.

Event date: 
Friday, July 1, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Tracy Baim, Owen Keehnen & Chuck Renslow

Leatherman: The Legend of Chuck Renslow

The trailblazing life of a Chicago living legend is vividly detailed in this
new biography. Living as an openly gay man in 1950s Chicago was no easy task. For
Chuck Renslow, that was the first of many bold moves. Just out of high school, he began
what became a six-decade empire as a bar-owner, publisher, bathhouse operator, sexual
renegade, and founder of International Mr. Leather, which, more than three decades
later, continues to be one of the world’s most popular annual gay events. Emerging in an
era of Mafia and police payoffs, Renslow danced (with a man) at Jimmy Carter’s 1977
inaugural ball, did pioneering work with the Kinsey Institute, and has known celebrities
such as Marlene Dietrich, Rudolph Nureyev, Divine, Grace Jones, Sylvester and Quentin
Crisp. Renslow, along with biographers Baim and Keehnen, will be present for tonight’s
discussion.

Event date: 
Friday, June 24, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Steven Petrow in conversation with Steve Kmetko

Steven Petrow’s Complete Gay & Lesbian Manners: The Definitive Guide to LGBT Life

When it comes to LGBT issues, American society is at a crossroads. Luckily,
Advocate.com and Huffington Post columnist Steven Petrow is there to help, offering
practical wisdom and lively wit for the awkward, often joyful, and sometimes painful
situations affecting the modern LBGT person. Whether it’s planning your wedding,
confronting anti-gay bullies, or making sense of dating and sex etiquette, there is finally
an authoritative, one-stop resource that LGBT people – and those who love them – can
turn to. Bring your best etiquette conundrums for tonight’s discussion.

Event date: 
Thursday, June 23, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Annual GLBTQ Pride Open Mic

Annual LGBTQ Pride Open Mic
Hosted by Cin Salach
With featured guest readers

It’s an annual Pride tradition we look forward to every year – our LGBTQ Pride
open mic. Open mic readers are invited to bring your best single page of prose or poetry
to share. Whether you are a seasoned reader with tons of readings under your belt, or a
novice sharing your work for the first time, you’ll find a rousing and supportive audience
and a dazzling variety of LGBTQ creative expression. Open mic participation is limited,
so stop in or call (773-769-9299) the store today to sign up.

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

Sappho’s Salon Three-Year Anniversary Bash

Sappho’s Salon Three-Year Anniversary Bash
Featuring Tret Fure, and guest host Kat Fitzgerald
$10 includes refreshments

Our popular salon night for lesbians and their friends is turning three, and we’re
celebrating with a performance by legendary lesbian musician, Tret Fure! Since the
release of her first album in 1973, Tret Fure has worked with such artists as the J. Geils
Band, Yes, and Bonnie Raitt. Leaving the mainstream music industry behind in the early
80s, she became a major player in the women’s music scene, recording and producing
some of the benchmark releases of the genre. Throughout the 90s, she recorded three
albums with women’s music pioneer Cris Williamson. Most recently, Tret Fure is
celebrating her 12th recording, “The Horizon” which has been released to rave reviews.
Tonight’s salon will be hosted by the incomparable photographer, musician, tarot reader,
and hostess-with-the-most, Kat Fitzgerald. Join us for champagne and cake at what is
sure to be an unforgettable night of music and conviviality. Proceeds benefit the artists
and the Women’s Voices Fund.

Event date: 
Saturday, June 18, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Dani Meier

Real Dads: Men Embracing Nonviolence booksigning

A perfect gift for Father’s Day, this moving collection of photographs and essays
captures loving fathers at their best, men who have stepped up or stepped in at critical
moments in their children’s lives: an adult man writes gratefully about the love his stay-
at-home father gave him as a child, a gay man writes about his dad’s surprising reaction
to his coming-out, a father writes about helping his daughter heal and move on after a
sexual assault. Real Dads offers a reminder that every day, fathers can make the world a
better place, one child at a time. Photographer and editor Meier will be on hand this
afternoon to personally inscribe copies of this lovely book for the deserving dads in your
life.

Event date: 
Saturday, June 18, 2011 - 11:30am to 1:00pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Lori Waxman, co-editor; Maud Lavin, contributor

Girls! Girls! Girls! In Contemporary Art


Since the 1990s, a bourgeoning field of female artists have produced challenging,
critically debated, and avidly collected artworks depicting female adolescence. Girls!
Girls! Girls! presents essays from established and up-and-coming scholars who examine
the impact of this collective outpouring, through themes such as nostalgia, narcissism,
post-feminism, and fantasy. Tonight, join co-editor Lori Waxman, and contributor, Maud
Lavin – both professors at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago – for a discussion
of this groundbreaking scholarship.

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

Dawn Mueller

A Single Year

In her debut memoir, Chicago writer Dawn Mueller charts her course as she departs from society’s expectations of lesbians, AA, and religion, and embarks on a quest of sexual fulfillment (without the aid of alcohol). Her sober perspective bares all as we follow her sometimes heartbreaking, often awkward struggles (and occasional triumphs), as an outsider among outsiders. Set in the north side of Chicago, and written with just the right amount of humor and humility, Mueller writes about sex, relationships, and sobriety in a style best described as Augusten Burroughs meets Bridget Jones.

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

Twesigye Jackson Kaguri

A School for My Village: A Promise to the Orphans of Nyaka


In Uganda, where HIV/AIDS has affected almost a third of the adult population,
almost two million children have been orphaned by the epidemic. A School for My
Village is the story of the building of an extraordinary school for these orphans and the
astonishing efforts of one man to raise an African community out of poverty and
hopelessness. Weaving together tales from his youth with the enormously inspiring
account of the remarkable challenges and triumphs of the school, Jackson shows how
someone with a modest idea is capable of achieving monumental results.

Event date: 
Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Danielle Sosin

The Long-Shining Waters


In 1622, Grey Rabbit, An Ojibwe woman, struggles to understand a dream-life
that has taken a fearful dimension. In 1902, Berit, a Nowegian immigrant, is tested to the
limits of her endurance and spirit. In 2000, Nora, a seasoned bar-owner, abruptly loses

her livelihood. Separated by centuries and circumstances, these three women connect
across time by the place they inhabit and the frigid, bountiful, lethal and wildly beautiful
waters of Lake Superior. Haunting, rich in historical detail, and universal in its
exploration of the human desire for meaning, The Long-Shining Waters is an
unforgettable and singular debut.

“The intimate portrait of three women bound by their times and coming unbound in the
great tidal pull of history is deeply affecting, wise, and true.”

Event date: 
Monday, June 13, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

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