In Jim Crow Texas, Ivoe
Williams, the precocious daughter of emancipated slaves, manages to get a degree in journalism. But no newspapers will hire her because of the color of her skin. Ivoe’s frustration drives her and her family to Kansas City, where she and her lover, Ona, launch the first female-run African-American newspaper, Jam! On the Vine. She
uses this platform to examine segregation and the prison system—often risking both her own safety and that of her loved ones. LaShonda Katrice Barnett was born in Missouri and grew up in Park Forest. She is the editor of I Got Thunder: Black Women Songwriters On Their Craft and Off the Record: Conversations with African American & Brazilian Women Musicians. Her short fiction has appeared in Guernica, the Chicago Tribune, and the New Orleans Review, among others. She received an M.A. in Women’s History from Sarah Lawrence College and a Ph.D. in American Studies from the College of William and Mary. She has taught literature and history at Columbia University, Hunter College, and Brown University.
In Jim Crow Texas, Ivoe
Contemporary old age is fraught with contradiction and complexity—women portrayed either as incompetent and cuddly grandmothers or as young women trapped in old bodies. Women in Late Life explores the thorny issues related to gender and aging, including cultural expectations, body image, ageism, chronic illness, threats to Social Security, and the challenges of a long-term care system that disadvantages women. Teaching, writing, advocating and training about aging for the past forty years, Martha Holstein is the former associate director of the American Society on Aging and has published widely in academic journals and books. She is also the co-author of the recent work, Ethics, Aging, and Society: The Critical Turn and the co-editor of several books, including Ethics in Community-Based Elder Care.
Join us for a reading, signing, and conversation with
Halle Butler and Sarah Gerard. The evening will be
moderated by Jacob Knabb, Senior Editor at Curbside Splendor Publishing
Halle Butler lives in Chicago. Jillian is her first book.
Sarah Gerard is the author of the novel Binary Star and the forthcoming
chapbook BFF. Her short works have appeared in The New York Times, The
Paris Review Daily, Joyland, The Brooklyn Rail, and other journals.
Refreshments will be served.
Co-sponsored by Chicago Books to Women in Prison and the Chicago
chapter of Black and Pink
Join an interactive book
discussion with Crystal Laura (Being Bad: My Baby Brother and the
School-to-Prison Pipeline) and Maya Schenwar (Locked Down, Locked Out:
Why Prison Doesn't Work and How We Can Do Better). The authors will discuss
the school-to-prison pipeline, the social forces that lead to incarceration,
the way prison breaks down connections between people, and the impact of prison
on families--including their own. They'll also touch on the crucial role that
books play for people in prison. Maya Schenwar is the editor-in-chief of
Truthout. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Guardian,
Salon, the Nation, Mother Jones, and other publications.
Maya is the recipient of the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Chi
Award and a Lannan Residency Fellowship for her writing on the impact of prison
on families and communities. Crystal Laura is an assistant professor of
educational leadership and co-director of the Center for Urban Research and
Education at Chicago State University and a volunteer teacher at St. Leonard's
Adult High School for formerly incarcerated men and women. Among her
publications are Being Bad: My Baby Brother and the School-to-Prison
Pipeline and Diving In: Bill Ayers and the Art of Teaching into the
Contradiction (co-edited with Isabel Nunez and Rick Ayers). By day, she explores
teacher education and leadership preparation for learning in the context of
social justice with the goal of training school professionals to recognize,
understand, and address the school-to-prison pipeline. During the second shift,
she co-parents two marvelous boys who give her work in the field of education
particular urgency. Refreshments will be served.
not one but two new books from local author Lucy Knisley. In Displacement--part
graphic memoir, part travelogue, and part family history--Lucy takes a cruise
with her 90-year-old grandparents, trying to connect with them while also
attempting to reconcile their younger and older selves. She is aided in her quest
by her grandfather’s WWII memoir, which is excerpted. Knisley’s frustration,
fears, and compassion are all vividly evoked as she contemplates mortality and
copes with the stress of travel complicated by her grandparents’ frailty.
In An Age of License, Lucy gets an opportunity that most only dream of: a
travel-expenses-paid trip to northern Europe. In this travel memoir, she
recounts her charming (and romantic) adventures, but also her anxiety-ridden
self-inquiries about traveling alone. Lucy Knisley is an ALA Alex Award-winning
cartoonist and occasional puppeteer, ukulele player, and food and travel writer
living in New York City. She is a graduate of the School of the Art Institute
of Chicago and Center for Cartoon Studies. She is the author of French Milk and Relish among other graphic novels and mini-comics.
Rory Fanning left the Army Rangers as a
conscientious objector just
days after Pat Tillman's death by friendly fire. Disquieted by his tours in
Afghanistan, Fanning set out to honor Tillman's legacy by crossing the United
States on foot. With humor and warmth, Worth Fighting For details both
the emotional and social consequences of Fanning’s decision to leave the military
and the journey itself, including the colorful people Fanning met along
his 3,000-mile journey. Rory’s writing has appeared in the Guardian, the
Nation, Mother Jones, Salon, and other outlets. Worth
Fighting For, his first book, was described in the Chicago Sun-Times
as “a gripping story of one young man's intellectual journey from eager soldier
to skeptical radical, a look at not only the physical immenseness of the
country, its small towns, and highways, but into the enormity of its past, the
hidden sins and unredeemed failings of the United States.” Fanning is currently
a housing and antiwar activist living in Chicago.
Feldman’s The Castrato is a nuanced exploration of why innumerable boys
were castrated to improve their singing between the mid-sixteenth and
late-nineteenth centuries. The book details how the entire foundation of
Western classical singing, culminating in bel canto, was birthed from an
unlikely and historically unique set of desires, both public and private, as
well as aesthetic, economic, and political. Martha Feldman, professor of music
at the University of Chicago, is the author of City Culture and the Madrigal
at Venice and The Courtesan’s Arts: Cross-Cultural Perspectives. She
is a recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship, the Royal Musical Association’s Dent
Medal, and various book prizes and is a member of the American Academy of Arts
and Sciences. Seth Brodsky teaches music history at the University of Chicago
and works on new music, psychoanalysis, and the nature of influence, musical
Join us for the BOOK LAUNCH PARTY celebrating Principles of Navigation by Lynn Sloan!
In a small town in Indiana, on the cusp of the new millennium, local reporter Alice Becotte wants a baby, which she believe will complete her family. But Alice’s husband Rolly, a talented sculptor, harbors ambitions that draw him away from a steady teaching gig and unravel the couple’s moorings. Principles of Navigation explores Alice and Rolly’s journey through loss, infidelity and heartbreak. Lynn Sloan is a writer, photographer, and a long time resident of Chicago. She grew up as an Air Force brat, graduated from Northwestern University, earned a master’s degree in photography at The Institute of Design, formerly the New Bauhaus, and taught photography at Columbia College Chicago. Her fine art photographs have been exhibited nationally and internationally. Her stories have appeared in numerous journals, including American Literary Review, The Literary Review, Nimrod, and Sou’wester, and been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Principles of Navigation is her first novel.
William Marston was an unusual man—a psychologist, a pulp novelist, and the (self-declared) inventor of the lie detector. He was also the creator of Wonder Woman, the comic that he used to express two of his greatest passions: feminism and women in bondage. Comics expert Noah Berlatsky takes us on a wild ride through the Wonder Woman comics of the 1940s, vividly illustrating how Marston’s many quirks and contradictions, paired with Harry Peter’s illustrations, produced a comic that was radically ahead of its time in terms of its depictions of female power and sexuality. Himself a committed polyamorist, Marston created a universe that was friendly to queer sexualities and lifestyles. Berlatsky’s analysis reveals a Wonder Woman far different from the feminist symbol many of us recall from television. Noah Berlatsky is the editor of the comics
and culture blog The Hooded Utilitarian. He has written on gender, comics, and culture for many publications, including Slate, Public Books, The Chicago Reader, Reason, The Comics Journal, The Baffler, and The Atlantic.
Grayson Sender has been holding onto a secret for what seems like forever: “he” was born into the wrong gender. The weight of this secret is crushing, but sharing it would mean facing ridicule, rejection, or worse. Will newfound strength, drawn from an unexpected friendship and a caring teacher, be enough to help Grayson step into the spotlight she was born to inhabit? This critically acclaimed novel for middle-grade readers explores identity, self-esteem, and friendship with nuance and heart. James Howe calls Gracefully Grayson "a small miracle of a book" and Rick Riordan describes it as "beautiful and authentic." A former CPS Language Arts teacher and literacy coach, Ami Polonsky lives outside of Chicago with her family. This is her debut novel and she is currently (and happily) plugging away on her second.
In this gutsy and unconventional essay collection, Allison Gruber examines her life as a young lesbian and breast cancer survivor. Through discussions of madness, religion, gender and feminism, Gruber’s captivating prose details everything from her teenage obsession with primatologist Dian Fossey to a dachshund named Bernie. Rippling with dark, often absurd humor, You’re Not Edith invites readers into an unusual life, interrupted. Allison Gruber's prose has appeared in a number of journals, including The Literary Review, Ms Fit,The Hairpin, and in the anthology Windy City Queer: Dispatches from the Third Coast. A Chicago native, Gruber now lives with her wife, Sarah, in Flagstaff, Arizona.
Recently promoted to lead detective, Louise Rick, receives news that an unidentified woman’s body has been found in the woods—and then another. According to the autopsy, the first victim died only a few days before, but there is a death certificate for her
dated over thirty years ago–along with her twin–issued by the head doctor of a mental institution. Rick struggles to investigate where this woman could have been hiding, without a trace, for thirty years, and the invisible trail leads her just a little too close to home. The first book in a trilogy, The Forgotten Girls is a must-read for fans of dark thrillers. In her native Denmark, Sara Blaedel, author of nine bestsellers, is renowned as the “Queen of Crime.” While she has been published in twenty three countries, this will be her first U.S. translation. For this event, Blaedel will be introduced by local mystery writer and dear friend of the store, Sara Paretsky. Paretsky’s sixteen books featuring her acclaimed detective V I Warshawski have been translated into thirty languages. She has also published two general novels, a book of essays, and numerous short stories. Credited with helping change the role of women in the contemporary crime novel, Paretsky founded the advocacy group Sisters in Crime in 1986 and is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Cartier Diamond Dagger, MWA Grand Master and Ms. Magazine’s Woman of the Year. Paretsky’s private foundation supports programs in the arts, sciences, education and human rights.
Retired Colonel Jill Morgenthaler was one of the first women to enter ROTC and train
with men; the first woman battalion commander in the 88th Regional Support
Command; the first woman brigade commander in the 84th Division; and the first
woman Homeland Security Advisor for the State of Illinois. The Colonel handled
disaster recovery during the San Francisco earthquake, worked as a peacekeeper
in Bosnia, and sheltered Kosovar refugees. Jill is a motivational speaker,
discussing how to lead and handle the media during crises. Courage to Take Command: Leadership Lessons from a Military Trailblazer
is her first book and shares leadership lessons to help business
professionals at any level overcome obstacles and forge paths to success.
During our renovation, we'll be holding our weekly Story time at Gus Giordano Dance School (5230 N Clark Street). Perfect for ages 2 to 4, the event will include dance stories and activities!
Please call the bookstore to order tickets for this event
WE ARE SOLD OUT OF COMPANION TICKETS.
**Please note: this is a ticketed off-site event that will be held at The Swedish American Museum, 5211 N. Clark St.**
For one night only, Issa Rae, creator of the hit web series “The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl,” will discuss her new memoir with Chicago’s own Samantha Irby. Issa Rae’s work has garnered over 20 million views and over 150,000 YouTube subscribers. In addition to making Glamour magazine’s “35 Under 35” list and Forbes’s “30 Under 30,” she won the Shorty Award for Best Web Show, partnered with Shonda Rhimes on an ABC television series, and is currently developing a half-hour comedy with Larry Wilmore for HBO. Issa’s work has been noted in The New York Times, Elle, Rolling Stone, MSNBC, Essence, and more.
Issa will be in conversation with the hilarious Samantha Irby, author of Meaty, host of Guts and Glory: Live Lit for the Lionhearted, and blogger at bitchesgottaeat.
To attend this event, you will need to purchase Issa Rae's book THE MISADVENTURES OF AWKWARD BLACK GIRL. You can buy the book over the phone by calling the store at 773-769-9299.
WE ARE NO LONGER ACCEPTING ONLINE ORDERS FOR TICKETS TO THIS EVENT. PLEASE CALL THE STORE TO SEE IF TICKETS ARE STILL AVAILABLE.
This event will be held at The Swedish American Museum, 5211 N. Clark
St. just a half-block away from Women & Children First. Issa Rae's book publishes on February 10th. You can pick up your book and ticket at the bookstore anytime after the 10th.