|Boswell Book Company
2559 North Downer Avenue at Webster Place
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53211
|Boswell Book Company Newsletter||#35 September 11, 2010|
|In This Issue
|:: Poets Keetje Kuipers with Paul Scot August, Sat. 9/11 2 PM|
|:: Neal Pollack on Yoga, Fri. 9/17 7 PM|
|:: Paul Buhle and Comics, Sat. 9/18 2 PM|
|:: Jean Reynolds Page and Isabel Sharpe, Sun. 9/19 2 PM|
|:: Dr. Niraj Nijhawal and Your Health, Mon. 9/20 7 PM|
|:: World Premiere Opera Insights, Tues. 9/21 7 PM|
|:: Daniel's Book Club Preview and Eric Puchner, Fri. 9/24 7 PM|
|:: Joshua Ferris and Patrick Somerville, Sat. 9/25 2 PM|
|:: James South and Mad Men, Tues. 9/28 7 PM|
|:: St. Peter and Paul Book Club Night, Wed. 9/29 7 PM|
|:: Eat Local Book Club Discussion at UEC, Tues. 9/14 7 PM|
|:: Caren Connolly and Louis Wasserman at Villa Terrace, Thurs. 9/16 7 PM|
|:: Neal Pollack's Yoga Class at Invivo, Fri. 9/17 7 PM|
|:: Emma Donoghue at Next Chapter, Thurs. 9/23 7 PM|
|:: Pat Dillon and Lynne Diebel at UEC, Mon. 9/27 7 PM |
|:: WUWM Presents Michele Norris at Alverno's Pitman Theatre, Thurs. 9/30 7 PM|
|:: Michael Grant at Whitefish Bay Library, Fri. 10/1 6:30 PM|
|:: Our New Recommendations|
|:: Great Events at the JCC Book and Culture Fair|
|:: From Our Blogs|
|:: Don't Forget about the Milwaukee Film Festival|
|:: New Gift Items|
This week we received Ape House
, Sara Gruen's follow-up novel to Water for Elephants
. Though it did not come with the same advance hype that greeted Mockingjay
, we've had several enthusiastic reads at the store. Let's hear more from Sharon.
is a fascinating story about a family of bonobo apes who live in the Great Apes Language Lab in Kansas City. The apes exist in a peaceful matriarchal group, and they are able to communicate with the scientists at the lab in ASL, or American Sign Language, as well as by lexigrams on the computer. The novel really takes off when the
language lab is bombed, and all of the apes are kidnapped. Isabel Duncan, one of the scientists, is gravely injured. When she recovers, she and journalist John Osgood work to recover the apes and find out who is responsible for the bombing.
"Although the human characters are quite intriguing, the real heroes of the book are the bonobos. Their interactions with the humans and each other are mesmerizing, and based on actual research done by the author at the Great Ape Trust. This story offers a look into a world that few of us will ever experience."
Rebecca is also a fan. She reports, "Gruen gives us a modern story with a not-so-subtle subtext about the tenuous connections in our lives--.
to animals, to our jobs, and to the many, many absurdities of what passes for entertainment today."
Publisher's List Price: $26.00
Boswell's Best Price: $20.80
|Poetry with a Sense of Adventure
Keetje Kuipers with Paul Scot August on Saturday, September 11th, 2 PM.
The poet Daisy Fried meditates on Kuipers' new collection, Beautiful in the Mouth, winner of the A. Poulin, Jr. poetry prize:
"Brooklyn parties and Montana creeks. Merle Haggard and girls' soccer teams. Hurricanes and gullies, eviction notices and women's shoes. These are a few of the disparate things that make up Kuipers' landscapes of love, unrest and womanhood--familiar American landscapes here made eerily, winningly unfamiliar."
Kuipers appears this Saturday with local favorite Paul Scot August. Join us and be inspired. today (September 11th) at 2 PM.
Just Added. A Yoga Class at Invivo with Neal Pollack.
Then Hear Him at Boswell on Friday, September 17th, at 7 PM.
"In the walk of life, I'd stepped in a big pile
of yoga doo, and nothing could get it off my sole. Or my soul."
By all means, come to the talk. But if you want to live the bliss, you can join him at Invivo for a free class. See more at right.
|Comics in Wisconsin?|
Yes, Indeed! Paul Buhle at Boswell on Saturday, September 18th, at 2 PM.
Folks who spent some time in Madison in their formative years (not unusual for a Milwaukeean) may remember an influential weekly, The Madison Bugle-American. How about Denis Kitchen's seminal Kitchen Sink Press of Princeton, Wisconsin?
They are both part of the weird and wonderful history that is Comics in Wisconsin
. Author Paul Buhle has published more than forty volumes on pop culture, film, and social movements.
Take it from the late Harvey Pekar. He called Comics in Wisconsin
"A Four color glimpse at the richness of a neglected political and artistic counterculture."
|From North Carolina to Wisconsin|
Novelists Jean Reynolds Page and Isabel Sharpe Chronicle Life in the Tarheel State for us Badgers on Sunday, September 19th, at 2 PM.
Speaking of Madison, let's welcome newcomer Jean Reynolds Page (just relocated to our capitol city) with a Bos-welcome. Author of several novels, Page's newest, Leaving Before It's Over, is about a down-on-their-luck North Carolina couple who marry for love and then need to re-connect with family when tragedy strikes. More on Page's site.
Joining Page will be our own Isabel Sharpe, whose newest, Knit in Comfort
, is also set in...hey, I don't have another clever way to say NorthCarolina. Newcomer Megan finds herself an isolated newcomer, even in the new
knitting group she joins, until her new tenant from New York jumpstarts her life. Like all friendships, it ain't easy, but still might be rewarding. Visit Sharpe's site for more.
|A Doctor's Secrets for Good Health
And Negotiating Through the Health Care Maze--Meet Niraj Nijhawan, M.D. on Monday, September 20th, at 7 PM.
Corruption in big drug companies. The
obesity pandemic. Hospital horror stories. Skyrocketing healthcare costs. These are issues plaguing most Americans.
What can we do? Hey, since Dr. Raj (a Milwaukee-area anesthesiologist) is
discussing his new book, Modern Medicine is Killing You,
we can learn how to avoid the landmines of modern medicine, tap into alternative approaches to health, and truly understand the debate over healthcare reform.
|Florentine Opera Insights Presents Another Great Season on Tuesday, September 21st at 7 PM
Starting with a World Premiere.
I think our events with the Florentine Opera have the highest compliments-per attendance ratio. And why not? They are
"Río De Sangre" tells the story, in Spanish, of the overthrow of a dictatorship in a fictional South American country. In the aftermath of a coup d'état, the new leader of a Latin American republic embarks on an idealistic course for his nascent government. Faced with numerous problems and no one to trust, our
protagonist Delacruz realizes that the good of the country and the protection of his own family may be more than he can achieve.
With a talk by Corliss Phillabaum, and aria excerpts from a new season of Studio singers, this event is the perfect preview for seeing the opera's world premiere, October 22-24, at the Marcus Center. Tickets here
|Everything You Wanted to Know About the Best Fall Book Clubs on Friday, September 24th
Along with the Author of One of My Favorites, Eric Puchner, at 7 PM.
When the Zillers move from Wisconsin to
California, they are hoping to make a killing in real estate, but the desert development they put together winds up a little too close to a dump for comfort. Told through the eyes of all five Zillers, Model Home,
Puchner's novel of a family's disintegration (and reconnection), "cannily trades on the very characteristics that have come to define a
recognizable California 'experience' in order to blast them apart," says The New York Times
. Read the rest of Marisa Silver's review here
That's just one of the the 20-odd books that we have on our fall book-club focus list. Want to hear more? I (Daniel) will be giving a short talk about them on Friday, September 24th, at 7 PM, as a prelude to Puchner's talk.
Double Delight--Two Fabulous Authors with Provocative Novels in Paperback
Joshua Ferris and Patrick Somerville on Saturday, September 25th, at 2 PM.
Reading with Ferris is Wisconsin's own Patrick Somerville, whose first novel, The Cradle
, was deemed "magical" by Janet
Maslin in The New York Times
, a dual journal that is set in motion by one man's quest for his wife's childhood cradle.
We're thrilled to have this very special dual reading (yes, they are connected--they have the same editor, the amazing Reagan Arthur!)
|Can't Get Enough Mad Men?
It's Enough to Drive a Fan to Think...Join the Crowd at James South's Talk on Tuesday, September 28th, 7 PM.
Mad Men and Philosophy
is a new
collection of philosophical inquiries, co-edited by Marquette University's own James South. From Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, to John Kenneth Galbraith, Milton Friedman, and Ayn Rand, this collection offers insights into a host of compelling questions and issues, including happiness, freedom, authenticity, feminism, and more.
And don't forget--the Socrates Cafe discussion group is back on Downer
Avenue. Join them for enlightened enlightenment on the second Saturday of each month, from 1:30 to 3:30 PM, meeting at our book club area near magazines. First meeting is this Saturday, September 11th.
St. Peter and Paul Book Club Night
And Shopping Night. 10% of Your Designated Purchases go to Good Works. on Wednesday, September 29th, at 7 PM.
We're very excited to be working with St. Peter and Paul
, helping organize their new book club program. Liam Callanan and Paul Salsini will both speak, there will be great suggestions, and it's a shopping night too. That means 10% of your designated purchases can go back to St. Peter and Paul, excluding the usual suspects (gift cards, textbooks, clearance, newspapers).
|The Calendar that Keeps on Giving
So Many Events, You Could Just Spend all Your Free Time Here.
Tuesday, October 5th, 7 PM.
Benjamin Percy, author of The Wilding.
Ex-Milwaukeean has already thrilled Boswellians Carl, Stacie, Sharon and Daniel with his great new novel.
Wednesday, October 6th, 7 PM. Paul Salsini presents the Council of Wisconsin Writers prize winners Valerie Laken, Barbara Manger, Angela Sorby and Kathy Borkowski of the Wisconsin Historical Society Press.
Saturday, October 9th, 2 PM.
Adam Golaski, author of Color Plates
, and John Cotter, author of Under the Small Lights
. Two creative small-press authors join forces. Golaski's collection is structured like a museum, with 60+ stories connected to different artists. while Cotter's is a lyrical take on twenty-somethings, pills, and more gin than they know what do to with.
Monday, October 11th, 7 PM. Joseph Skibell, author of A Curable Romantic
. An optometrist's journey from Freud to Esperanto to the Warsaw ghetto. JCC Book and Culture Fair preview night. Jody Hirsh will introduce. 10% of designated sales during this event will go to the JCC.
Tuesday, October 12th, 7 PM
Tucker Max, Author of A**holes Finish First.
Signing Only. Ticketed Event. You must buy a copy of the
book from Boswell to enter the signing line.
Thursday, October 14th, 7 PM. Peter Geye, author of the novel, Safe from the Sea
. A shipwreck leads to a rift between father and son. Carl loved this!
Friday, October 15th, 7 PM. James Dashner, author of The Scorch Trials.
The sequel to The Maze Runner
is a dystopian adventure, perfect for frans of Suzanne Collins.
Saturday, October 16th, 2 PM.
Rebecca Johns, author of The Countess
. A historical novel about the member of Hungarian royalty that
was also one of the most prolific serial killers in history.
Tuesday, October 19th, 7 PM
Marilyn Taylor and Friends: the legendary Hartford Avenue Writing Group reads.
Wednesday, October 20th, 7 PM.
John Reimringer, author of the novel Vestments
. A debut novel about a wayward yet devout priest who
struggles to reconcile his faith with longings of the flesh.
Thursday, October 21st, 7 PM. Mona Simpson, author of My Hollywood
. Her first novel in ten years, about the complicated relationship of a composer and her Filipino nanny.
Friday, October 22nd, 7 PM.
Saturday, October 23rd, 2 PM. Bonnie Leick, illustrator of Goodnight Little Monster
. Just in time for Halloween, a spooky presentation (with drawing) for your little monster.
Saturday, October 23rd, 4 PM
Saturday, October 23rd, 8 PM
Sunday, October 24th, 2 PM. Ian Frazier at the Milwaukee Public Library's Centennial Room. His new book is Travels in Siberia
And more, including Elizabeth Kostova and Nicole Krauss.
EVENTS ELSEWHERE, AND MORE
|Celebrating the Eat Local Challenge
A Special Book Club Discussion at the Urban Ecology Center.
On Tuesday, September 14th, we gather for a discussion of Plenty: Eating Local on the 100-Mile Diet, a one-year eat-local challenge in British Columbia that is as insightful as it is humorous. And no, you don't have to have bought the book from Boswell to pariticpate.
|Just a Week Away at Villa Terrace
An Event to Celebrate Wisconsin's Own on Thursday, September 16th, 7 PM.
Louis Wasserman and M. Caren Connolly, principals of architecture and
landscape design firm Louis Wasserman and Associates, have put their hearts and souls into the exquisite new book, Wisconsin's Own: Twenty Remarkable Homes
Beautiful photos from Zane Williams, historical details, blueprints and elevation drawings fill the book, documenting such masterpieces as Ten Chimneys,
Wingspread, and Baraboo's House of Seven Gables.
The talk, at the wonderful Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum (2220 N. Terrace, included in the book of course), will detail how the homes were chosen, interesting findings from their research, and the architectural and cultural significance of the homes. It's a very special event.
|Greetings, Namaste Pollack!
A Special Yoga Class at Invivo on Friday, September 17th, at 5:30 PM.
Join Invivo as it welcomes satirist Neal
Pollack to celebrate the release of Stretch: The Making of a Yoga Dude
, with a shared yoga class. Biz Casmer and Neal will offer a daily dose of yoga. Then come to Boswell for
a talk and signing.
This is a donation-based class. Pre-registration is strongly recommended. Call (414) 265-5605 or sign up at Invivo's front desk. Invivo is located at 2060 N. Humboldt Avenue. More here
Why Stacie and Sharon are Going to See The Amazing Emma Donoghue at Next Chapter on Thursday, September 23rd?
And a Bit More Convincing as to Why You Should Go Too.
It's the #1 Indie Next Book for September, voted on by independent bookstores across the country.
, by Emma Donoghue, and she's appearing at Next Chapter, on Thursday, September 23rd, at 7 PM. Tickets are $5, and can be bought here.
Here's Stacie with a slightly abridged, incredibly enthusiastic recommendation:
is told through the eyes of Jack, a pure, trusting, bright five-year-old boy who knows only "Room" and refers to everything important in it as a proper
noun: Wardrobe, Rug, Rocker Chair, and Bed--because he only knows the items as their own singular existence. He sleeps in Wardrobe where, at night, his mother hides him away from the eyes of her abductor. It is heartbreaking to witness mother and child playing "Scream," which they play every day in the afternoon, standing on chairs with heads tilted at the skylight, the reader understanding the heartbreaking purpose of this game which only delights a child whose reality is so specifically minuscule. To try and describe the emotional impact of Room
does it a disservice, as Emma Donoghue has wrought a simple, but not simplistic, tale of immense power that could only render me speechless."
|Go Green on Your Next Vacation
Pat Dillon and Lynne Deibel at the Urban Ecology Center on Monday, September 27th, at 7 PM.
Larry Meiller of Wisconsin Public Radio praises it as a "handy, worthwhile book to make your Wisconsin travel experiences memorable...and green."
We're cohosting an event with the authors, where they document the eco-friendliest places and activities, all at the Urban Ecology Center (1500 East Park Place). Come hear more on September 27th. More on the UEC
|Michele Norris at Alverno College
Thursday, September 30th, 7 PM--
Tix Available Now by Phone or Web.
Norris, the host of NPR's "All Things Considered,"
will be speaking at
Alverno College's Pitman Theatre, on Thursday, September 30th, at 7 PM. Brought to you by WUWM
, 89.7, as well as Alverno College Research Center
for Women and Girls, Alverno College International and Intercultural Center, and The Reader's Choice bookstore.
Giving the introduction and coordinating the Q&A will be Mitch Teich
, executive producer and one of the hosts of WUWM's acclaimed talk show, "Lake Effect."
Norris is appearing for her new memoir, The Grace of Silence
. It began as an investigation of race relations in the age of Obama, but it got more personal as Norris learned stories about her own family--that her grandmother played Aunt Jemima at county fairs, and her father was shot by police in Birmingham after returning home from the battlefields of World War II.
Tickets are $26
, and include a signed copy of the book. Norris will also personalize at the event. If you do not
want the book, a $20 Boswell gift card is an option. There's a $5 ticketing fee at the Alverno Box Office, but that is per order, not per ticket. Norris will be personalizing after the event, during a reception sponsored by Alverno College Research Center for Women and Girls, and the International and Intercultural Center.
Michael Grant at the Whitefish Bay Library, Friday, October 1st, 6:30 PM.
A New Hilarious Adventure Series for Middle-Graders.
In The Magnificent 12: The Call
David "Mac" MacEvoy lives an average life. His parents ignore him. His teachers ignore him. His friends take him for granted. Only the bullies really seem to take an interest. And he has lots of phobias. He's an unlikely candidate to save the world, but when an ancient being gives him orders, what can he do but go along?
Grant has written many books, but is probably best known for his dystopian teen
series, featuring the books Gone
, and Lies
. The new series is for that fan's younger sibling (8-12). But I'm an adult and I liked it just fine! More on the books here
We're cohosting the event at the Whitefish Bay Library
community room at a special time of 6:30 PM. Want more books at the library? Show your support by attending this very special event.
|Congratulations to John Koethe
The Academy of American Poets announced this week that John Koethe's Ninety-fifth Street
has been awarded the 2010 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize, for writing the most outstanding book of poetry published in the previous year.
More Staff Recs Than You Can Shake a Stick At
As Long as The Stick Has a Sign on it that Says, "Boswell's Best, 20% Off."
, a novel by Jonathan Franzen, (Farrar Straus Giroux)
The number one question I've gotten in
September is, "Have you read Freedom
yet?" I haven't, but fortunately I'm able to defer to our resident Franzenologist:
"No one writes about dysfunctional families and individuals better than Jonathan Franzen. The struggle to achieve personal independence and identity--battling the constraints of family, friends, lovers, society, and the unrealistic expectations (both our own and other people's for us) that map our lives- is explored with hilarious results in this splendid new novel. If you liked The Corrections
, you'll love this!"
Publisher Price: $28.00
Boswell's Best Price: $22.40
"At the heart of Our Tragic Universe
is the concept of the story-less story. Meg is drifting through life, attempting to write her
novel, but its plotting continues to throw a wrench into any real work on it. She turns to genre fiction to pay the bills. Her boyfriend Christopher is out of work and contributes zero to the financial situation. Surprisingly enough, the relationship is slowly decaying. Very little action propels the story along; instead, there are the dead-on and inspiring philosophical conversations of heaven, hell and existence. For a book about nothing, Thomas really knows how to pack a lot into the trajectory of this story, and the journey is so very impressive."
Publisher Price: $19.95
Boswell's Best Price: $15.96
, a novel by Peter Robinson, (William Morrow).
"The title could describe the man DCI Alan Banks' daughter has become involved with,
or it could describe Banks himself, as he has never hesitated to bend rules to the breaking point if it will help him solve his cases. This time he is trying to find and save his kidnapped daughter. As events unfold, he begins to question many things--including his desire to be a policeman. Love this author, love this series! He never fails to satisfy."
Publisher Price: $25.99
Boswell's Best Price: $20.79
The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival,
by John Vailllant (Knopf).
Picture late 1990's Russia. There's a man-eating tiger on the prowl, and a team of
hunters hoping to capture it. This story about the tenuous relationship with animals and humans is a mix of history, travel, and adventure. Temple Grandin writes that "This book must be read by everybody interested in the conversation of wildlife." Annie Proulx notes it's perfect for, but not limited to adventure buffs. And Hampton Sides calls it "a richly textured, compelling story of Nature and Man at odds-and at risk." Most important of all, my friend Fran Keilty, proprietory of the Hickory Stick
in Washington Depot, Connecticut, was very enthusiastic. "It's a book you will read, like, and be able to sell to people who will come back to you and offer their thanks." I trust the always-reliable Fran, and I hope you will too.
Publisher Price: $26.95
Boswell's Best Price: $21.56
|JCC Book and Culture Fair 2010
The Schedule is Out--Myla Goldberg and Daniel Levin and Dani Shapiro and more.
|Highlights From Blogs
Ours, Yes, but Also Others.
A Visit to the Boston Public Library's Special Map Poster exhibit on Boswell and Books
John waxes poetic about the joys of having the bookstore call and say, "Your book is here" in Paper over Board
The Milwaukee Film Festival is Just Around the Corner
Tickets on Sale Now.
It starts September 23rd, at the Oriental, Mequon's North Shore Cinemas, and the Ridge Cinemas.
What Do Owls and Matryoshkas Have in Common?
They Both Are Fond of Nesting.
You may have noticed that any time we get in something with owls on it, they disappear in a hoot. So why not give the people what they want and put together an owl table? We've got journals and cards and flashing key chains and plates and mugs and napkins.And don't forget some of our favorite books, including Wesley the Owl, Sam and the Firefly, and In my Tree.
Another hot item has been matryoshkas (nesting dolls). When you spot matryoshka coasters, key caps, and measuring cups all selling out, what do you
do? You find genuine Russian nesting dolls. We've got a lovely selection of traditional miniature dolls, all priced at $15.95 and $16.95. Also brand new nesting glasses, and naturally, an assortment of Russian fiction, history, culture. Horosho!
|Visit Our Green Market
Every Sunday from 2-6 PM.
Maple syrup and dog treats and produce and artisan jewelry. You never know what will turn up.
No Closing Words for Me Because There are Too Many Books to Talk About
So We Sign Off with a rec from Our Buyer Jason about an Absolutely Wonderful First Novel, His Favorite Book of the Fall.
"Skippy Juster is a boarder at the Seabrook College in Dublin, who during a donut-eating
contest, collapses and dies, though not from eating any donuts. The novel then stops, rewinds, and expands on the universe that is Seabrook College: from Skippy's friend & roommate Ruprecht to Howard the Coward, his history teacher, to the Automator, the headmaster who is attempting to modernize the school. This darkly comic book loops through the characters as the school year progresses, putting puzzling pieces together, or shattering them hard upon the narrative page leaving you wondering where anything came from. Paul Murray has a way with school boy's dialogue that is laugh-out-loud-funny, from re-interpreting Robert Frost to a discussion on 10-dimensional string theory. This is one mammoth book, but it is a brilliant, and worth the time spent wrapped in Murray's universe."
Publisher Price: $28.00
Boswell's Best Price: $22.80
Thanks for your support,
Daniel, with Amie, Anne, Bev, Carl, Conrad, Greg, Jason, Jocelyn, Mark, Pam, Rebecca, Sharon, and Stacie.