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Boswell Book Company Newsletter                     May 31, 2012, Day 1153.



Welcome to our June events calendar. There is much to talk about, but first, here are some of our favorite books coming out this month.


The Watch, by Joydeep Roy-Bhattacharya (Hogarth, on sale June 5).

"At an American military outpost in Kandahar Province, a group of men (and one woman) are being held hostage--by their individual experiences, beliefs, prejudices, and philosophies. For all their best intentions, what they face is unprecedented--not only the woman who waits outside their gates, refusing to leave--but also the harsh realities of a war that even the most seasoned veteran doesn't quite understand. What happens over the course of only a few days is brought forth through the shifting realities and dreams of these young men. When strong winds stir up Afghan sands, it can be impossible to see what is right in front of you. And, when the dust has settled, what has been laid to waste will be your own heart."

Stacie M. Williams, Boswell Book Company


Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn (Crown, also on sale June 5)

"Gillian Flynn's latest thriller is the story of Nick and Amy Dunne, a beautiful couple living an enviable life. On the morning of their fifth anniversary, Amy disappears. Nick is under suspicion almost immediately; he tells lies to the police and seems oddly unconcerned about his wife's vanishing act. The real genius of this novel comes as Flynn shamelessly manipulates the reader. First you are convinced that Nick is guilty, then Amy, then Nick again. The story ping-pongs back and forth, racing toward an ending that you won't see coming. I think this is by far her best work."

--Sharon Nagel, Boswell Book Company


While neither Roy-Bhattacharya nor Flynn are coming to Boswell, you never know about the future. There's no need to be greedy, however, as we have a great lineup of authors for you this June. 

Jane Austen Scholar Sandy Lerner Writing as Ava Farmer, at Boswell on Saturday, June 2, 2 pm.


Second ImpressionsThe  Jane Austen Society of North America (JASNA) is co-sponsoring this visit from Sandy Lerner, founder of the Chawton House Library, specializing in early English women's writing from 1600 to 1830. Writing as Ava Farmer, she's penned a culturally and historically accurate sequel to Pride and Prejudice. She'll be giving a talk/reading on Saturday, June 2, 2 pm, at Boswell for Second Impressions, a sequel to Pride and Prejudice.


Ava Farmer/Sandy LernerWritten ten years after the Bennett family married off Jane and Elizabeth, the story revolves around Darcy and Elizabeth's inability to produce an heir for Pemberley. Farmer weaves in characters not just from Pride and Prejudice, but from Emma, Persuasion, and even Sandition. Writing this was a quarter century labor of love. And both Marsha from the MPL Library Friends and our Jane give this a thumbs up. More about Chawton House Press here.

Eva Gabrielsson in Conversation with Mitch Teich, Wednesday, June 6, 7 pm.


there are things I want you to knowWho hasn't wondered about the story behind the The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and the other titles in the Millenium trilogy? We know that Larsson died after handing in the original three manuscripts, and that Mikael Blomkvist was somewhat based on Stieg Larsson's own life. Gabrielsson's memoir There are Things I Want You to Know about Stieg Larsson and Me, serves as witness, through a series of short vignettes, to Eva and Stieg's romance and partnership. We learn about his work struggles, his passion for fighting the injustices of the world, and the successful rise of his novels, which he didn't live to Eva Gabrielsson per Per Jarlsee.


Gabrielsson will be appearing in conversation with "Lake Effect" producer Mitch Teich, on Wednesday, June 6, 7 pm, at Boswell. Tickets for this event are $5 and are available on our website. The ticket gets you admission and $5 off the cost of one copy of Eva Gabrielsson's memoir. Want to know more? Read this interview with Gabrielsson in the Guardian.

The Mighty Michiganders, Bonnie Jo Campbell and Natalie Bakopoulos, Reading Together on Friday, June 8, 7 pm, at Boswell.


Once upon a river 612From National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award finalist, and lifelong Michigan resident, Bonnie Jo Campbell, comes Once Upon a River, a novel about one young woman's watery odyssey. Margo Crane is a modern day Calamity Jane, hunting and rowing through her own soul, fighting to survive her basest (and basic) needs, while seeking her true identity.


In hisJournal Sentinel review, Mike Fischer praised this "outstanding novel" with its Bonnie Jo Campbell"unforgettable heroine." And Jim Higgins profiled her in the Journal Sentinelwith not one, but two profiles. He notes "Campbell is about as distinctive as her crack-shot heroine. Bright enough to attend the University of Chicago, and just a cosine short of her PhD in mathematics, she likes to forage the Kalamazoo countryside for wild food and practices kobudo weapons training."

 Green Shore 612

Paired with Campbell is fellow Wolverine Natalie Bakopoulos, offering her first novel, The Green Shore. Set during the Greek military takeover of the late sixties and early seventies, the story is told through the eyes of one family, a widowed doctor and her two daughters. Booklist offers this praise: "Deeply imbued with the passion and honor synonymous with Greek culture, abundant with sensuous imagery and stimulating discourse, Bakopoulos' debut novel is a sumptuous and provocative portrait of the nexus of the personal with the political."


Natalie BakopoulosThe Green Shore is featured on the June Indie Next list with this quote from Boswell: "The personal and political mash up in this passionate story, at once a tale of a particular place and time, yet also a timeless mirror of the struggles of life under any repressive government. A compelling read.." And here's a blog piece in Boswell and Books about how the novel can be put in context of the current Greek situation.


Bonnie Jo Campbell and Natalie Bakopouos speak and read together on Friday, June 8, 7 pm, at Boswell. And yes, Natalie's brother Dean will be back with Patrick Somerville in July.

Upcoming Worldcon Toastmaster John Scalzi Appears at Boswell on Monday, June 11, 7 pm.


RedshirtsIf you asked our buyer Jason who was the best science fiction writer at work today, I suspect John Scalzi would be on his shortlist. Having made his mark with Old Man's War, he's continued to publish top notch work, including his riff on Philip K. Dick, The Android's Dream. Now in his new novel Redshirts, Scalzi uses another mythology as a jumping off point for classic science fiction. Let's hear more from a Boswellian.


john scalzi"After Ensign Dahl is assigned to the Intrepid, a la Enterprise from Star Trek, he begins to discover a few disturbing facts. Chief among them, the fact that low ranking officers, like an Ensign, are killed routinely every time. What happens next is purely brilliant, as Scalzi nails every nerdy detail in this homage to science fiction TV. Simply put: I loved this extremely clever book."

--Jason Kennedy, Boswell Book Company


Join us on Monday, June 11, 7 pm, Scalzi wil be appearing at Boswell to discuss Redshirts and his other work. Redshirts comes out June 5. If you are able to read Redshirts in that time period, you are welcome to join our in-store Science Fiction group for a discussion about the book at 6 pm. Scalzi will join in the discussion.  

Alyson Hagy with Laurel Landis at Boswell on Tuesday, June 12, 7 pm.


BoletoWe are honored to host writer Alyson Hagy at Boswell. Stacie has been championing her new novel, Boleto since it was in manuscript form. She's gotten a number of us to read it and become fans ourselves.  Here's a recent Boswell and Books post about Hagy and the tradition of western writing. But let's let Stacie tell you herself about Boleto.


"Boleto is about the dusty and soulful making of a young horse whisperer; the warmth of smooth, copper-colored whisky runs through every page, bound and determined to get you drunk with its beauty and precision.  Will Testerman is a young man with "a decent heart" and a preternatural gift for horses. Afraid of becoming "just another solitary cowboy shuck" trapped in the small, broken-down Wyoming ranching community he's Alyson Hagygrown up in, he saddles himself with a nameless filly and heads out with risky dreams he dare not define. Hagy's signature no-nonsense, spit-and-polish writing style pulls no punches in delivering a quiet, lingering novel that will open more space inside you than the expanse of a spring Wyoming sky."


Opening for Hagy will be Laurel Landis. Landis's work


has appeared in Rosebud, Wisconsin People & Ideas, and Lake Effect's Flash Fiction Fridays (now a book edited by Robert Vaughan).

Maya Stein, The Type Rider, Appears at Boswell on Wednesday, June 13, 7 pm (with a Type-In Beforehand, Starting at 5 pm) in an event co-sponsored by Wisconsin Public Radio.


typeriderOn June 13, poet Maya Stein will arrive in Milwaukee after cycling 1,300 miles from Amherst, Massachusetts, typewriter in tow, to celebrate her 40th birthday. With her will be an epic poem, contributed to by people in communities strewn along the path of Stein's journey who each took a turn typing on the same typewriter.


WI Public RadioThe idea for "Type Rider" was inspired by Stein's childhood memory of a typewriter that her father had placed in a hallway on a desk near her and her siblings' bedrooms when she was growing up. It served as a communal, collaborative writing space for the family to add their words to, building a shared story. "That story and the stories that followed," Stein says, "drew me more deeply into my own creativity, and created an inextricable bond between those of us who wrote together. I want to bring that communal hallway back, to resurrect the joy of writing collaboratively, and to do it with a slow, purposeful unfolding by delivering the experience by bicycle."


Maya SteinHer schedule in Milwaukee starts at Discovery World, where she will have a type-in from 2 to 4 pm. For more information, check out the Discovery World website. Then from 5 to 7 pm, the type-in will move to Boswell Book Company, where folks will be invited to type on the turquoise typewriter that has traveled halfway across the country.


And then at 7 pm, Stein's journey will culminate in a talk, likely including some poetry and some work created along the journey by participants. Read the New York Times articlethat led to many inquiries about whether we were hosting Stein here.

Sarah Terez Rosenblum at Boswell on Thursday, June 14, 7 pm.


We welcome Sarah Terez Rosenblum home to Milwaukee to celebrate the releaHerself when she's missing se of Herself When She's Missing, published by Soft Skull Press. It's the story of a young woman who becomes obsessed with Cry Wolf, a brother-sister folk duo with an eccentric hodgepodge of followers. Andrea becomes involved with a fellow groupie, but when the romance spirals out of control, she realizes it has become just another addiction.


Sarah Terez RosenblumUsing lists, 3x5 cards, and even an occasional screenplay to further the story, Rosenblum's novel is, as Rosellen Brown puts it "full of surprises, ingenious linguistic and typographical twists, but--far more important--the authentic feel of a young woman discovering herself and what she needs (and doesn't need) in her life."


And maybe one more rec, from Victor DeLorenzo: "Sarah Terez Rosenblum's powerful novel is gentle and elegant. Her characters exhibit their wanton souls in a poetic way that never feels poetic, for they are as real-life as they are still-life; they are breathing on the page, even."

Matthew Batt's Humorous Take on Fixing Up a Problem Home, on Wednesday, June 20, 7 pm, at Boswell.


SugarhouseWhen Matthew Batt and his wife decided, after years of moving, that it was time to settle down, they bought a centuries old house in the Sugarland neighborhood of Salt Lake City. The problem? It was a crack house. The Batts found themselves alternately avoiding and embracing the perks and perils of becoming fully committed adults, while trying to figure out how, exactly, a rented power sander works. With a beguiling voice and a sharp eye for everyday absurdities,  calls to mind David Sedaris, Bill Bryson, and Sloane Crosley in this one-of-a-kind memoir.


Sugarhouse: Turning the Neighborhood Matthew Batt 612Crack House into Our Home Sweet HomeThis Marquette grad's work has appeared in Tin House, Huffington Post, Mid-American Review, Western Humanities Review, The Isthmus, San Francisco Chronicle, and elsewhere, and he is the recipient of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Billy Collins notes: "Matt Batt proves himself an oddball cousin to Thoreau and Tracy Kidder," and Cheryl Strayed calls Sugarhouse "an unforgettable and sweet read." 


Batt appears Wednesday, June 20, 7 pm, at Boswell. Bring your power tools.

Bronze Optical Co-Sponsors PFLAG Leader Catherine Tuerk at Boswell on Thursday, June 21, 7 pm.


Mom KnowsWhen psychotherapist Catherine Tuerk's son came out, she thought he'd never be happy. She set out to educate herself and others about gay people, eventually becoming a chapter president of PFLAG: Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays. She wrote articles for varied publications and appeared on many television and radio shows with the aim of dispelling homophobia. 

Catherine Tuerk 

Mom Knows is a lively and compelling selection from her writings of two decades, with this remarkable mother's distinctive voice-frank and insightful, compassionate and hopeful-coming through strong and clear. Tuerk appears at Boswell on Thursday, June 21, 7 pm, co-sponsored by Bronze Optical.

Journalist Thomas Peele at Boswell on Friday, June 22, 7 pm.


Killing the MessengerIn 2007, journalist Chauncey Bailey was gunned down by a 19 year-old member of a Black Muslim cult which Bailey was in the process of investigating in Oakland, California. The leader, Yusuf Bey, whose actions included beating and raping dozens of women he claimed were his wives, and fathering more than forty children, remained a prominent fixture in the community, and police looked the other way as the violence escalated.

Thomas PeeleIn Killing the Messenger: A Story of Radical Faith, Racism's Backlash, and the Assassination of a Journalist, Thomas Peele, who came upon this story while reporting for the Contra Costa Times, recounts the episode and its aftermath, with the full story stretching back decades. Peele will speak at Boswell on Friday, June 22, 7 pm. Many folks are comparing this book to Jon Krakauer's Under the Banner of Heaven.


Here's Publisher's Weekly's take on the book: "Peele follows with a multigenerational account of the Beys' heinous crimes, money-making schemes, and oppressive rule, and their eventual intersection with Bailey. The chain of violence that accompanies the movements century-long evolution is staggering, and justice, when it comes, is overdue. Peele renders characters and scenes with rich detail and his chronicle of events surrounding Baileys death unfolds with the seamlessness of a fictional thriller. Want more? Here's a review from Scott Martelle in Los Angeles Times.


Lawyer, Politician and Writer Matthew J. Flynn Appears for His First Novel at Boswell on Tuesday, June 26, 7 pm.


Pryme KnumberBernie Weber is an ordinary 15-year-old high school student. But when Washington, the CIA, and Yale discover his extraordinary gift for factoring prime numbers, they realize he could be the world's best codebreaker. When they all invade Milwaukee with the same mission--to kidnap and force him to help--they think it will be an easy task. However, the people of Milwaukee have a different idea: hide Bernie Weber.


Matthew J Flynn"Pryme Knumber is a wickedly funny look at Washington against Milwaukee, Yale against Community College. When the CIA comes to town to waterboard a Milwaukee teenage math genius, look out." --Professor William Holahan, Retired Chairman/Department of Economics UWM.


Flynn will be speaking and reading at Boswell on Tuesday, June 26, 7 pm. Introducing him will be Dennis Conta, past Secretary, Department of Revenue/Wisconsin; Mayoral Candidate; and, past State Assemblyman.

A Special Evening with Sapphire, Wednesday, June 27, 7 pm.


KidsSapphire's new-in-paperback novel, The Kid, introduces us to Abdul, son of the unlikely heroine of Push (adapted into the 2009 film, Precious). Academically excelling and on track to be the first member of his family to attend college, Abdul's future tragically crumbles when his mother dies. Now an HIV/AIDS orphan, he is shuffled through foster homes and into Sapphirea world too much like the one his mother fought to save him from. From a troubled Catholic orphanage to downtown artist's lofts, the story moves Abdul through a confounding experience that forces him to mark his own dark places.


Performance poet and author Sapphire will be in Milwaukee, on Wednesday, June 27, for not one but two bookstore appearances. At 5 pm until 5:45, she will be signing at Reader's Choice, 1950 North Martin Luther King Drive. For questions, contact Carla at 414-265-2003.

 Reader's Choice

And then at 7 pm on the same evening, she will do a traditional talk/reading/signing at Boswell, which as you know, is at 2559 North Downer Avenue. We welcome books bought at Reader's Choice for our appearance, and both stores are sponsoring both events. Read more about the book in this O magazine interview, conducted by Crystal Martin.

Joy Stocke and Angie Brenner with a Celebration of Turkish Culture, Thursday, June 28, 7 pm.


Anatolian Days and NightsWhen Joy Stocke and Angie Brenner meet on the balcony of a guesthouse in a small resort town on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey, they think they have only a mutual friend and a summer dream in common. Soon, they discover a shared love of travel, history, culture, cuisine, and literature; and they begin a ten-year odyssey through Turkey that culminates in the new book, Anatolian Days and Nights: A Love Affair with Turkey, Land of Dervishes, Goddesses and Saints.


Joy Stocke & Angie BrenerInspired by the poetry of thirteenth-century mystic Jelaluddin Rumi, Brenner and Stocke journey to central Turkey for the Whirling Dervishes Festival. A visit to a Turkish bath becomes a lesson in sensuality and patience. Their interest in the cults of the mother goddess takes them to Ephesus, the Black Sea, and east into Mesopotamia, finding excitement, friendship, and love along the way.


As Joy Stocke notes to Leesha Lentz in Wild River Review, "The first thing to realize is that Turkey is also called Anatolia named for the great mother of Mesopotamia--Anat." Read the rest of the interview here.

July Event Preview!


Cocktail hour under the tree of forgetfulnessMonday, July 9, 7 pm, at Boswell:

Sheila Kohler, author of The Bay of Foxes and Becoming Jane Eyre.


Tuesday, July 10, 7 pm, at Boswell:

Alexandra Fuller, author of Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness and Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight.


Wednesday, July 11, 7 pm, at Boswell:

Patrick Somerville, author of This Bright River and The Cradle

This Bright River 712 smalland

Dean Bakopoulos, author of My American Unhappiness, and Please Don't Come Back from the Moon.


 Monday, July 16, 7 pm, at Boswell:

Chris Cleave, author of Gold and Little Bee.

Fundraiser for Pablove. $5 tickets go on sale June 5.Gold 712 small


Tuesday, July 17, 7 pm, at Boswell:

Donald Ray Pollock, author of The Devil All the Time, and Knockemstiff.


Wednesday, July 18, 7 pm, at Centennial Hall, 733 North Eighth Street:

David Maraniss, author of Barack Obama: The Story.


Barack Obama the story 712Tuesday, July 24, 7 pm, at Boswell:

St. Sukie de la Croix, author of Chicago Whispers: A History of LGBT Chicago Before Stonewall

in converation with

Gregg Shapiro, author of GREGG SHAPIRO '77.


Wednesday, July 25, 7 pm, at Boswell:

Nick Weber, author of The Circus that Ran Away with a Jesuit Priest.


Monday, July 30, 7 pm, at Boswell:

Robert Goolrick, author of Heading Out to Wonderful and A Reliable Wife.

Other June Author Events Around Town.


Borower 612 trade paperFriday, June 1, 6:30-8:30 pm, opening night events for the Midwest Small Press Festival at Woodland Pattern, 720 East Locust Street in Riverwest.

From 6:30 to 7:30 pm, enjoy the authors of Iowa's Strange Cage Press, including Russell Jaffee, Lesley Wheeler, and Nick Demske. Then at 7:30, contributors to the anthology New Stories from the Midwest will discuss the topic "Surrealism in the Midwest." Featured readers are Michael Czyzniejewski, Sarah Elizabeth Schantz, and Rebecca Makkai, whose novel, The Borrower, was one of my summer reads from last year. 


Long shining watersThursday, June 14, 7 pm, at Books and Company, 1039 Summit Avenue in Oconomowoc:

Danielle Sosin, author of The Long-Shining Waters, now in paperback.

Sosin's novel about three generations of families connected to Lake Superior received raves in hardcover, and we had a wonderful event with Sosin. Books and Company is just north of highway 94 and I've been told the Ben Franklin in their shopping center is great crafting store. And here's my blog post on Sosin from exactly a year ago.


Love and other delusions 612Friday, June 15, 7 pm, at Next Chapter, 10976 North Port Washington Road, in Mequon:

Larry Baker, author of Love and Other Delusions.

The author of Flamingo Rising and A Good Man offers an old story with new twists, concerning a married woman's long-term affair with a younger man. Baker teaches American Social and Intellectual History of the 20th Century at the University of Iowa. Registration is requested; call (262) 241-6220.


Wrong man 612Saturday, June 16, 12 Noon at Mystery One, 2109 North Prospect Avenue:

David Ellis, author of The Wrong Man.

Chicago-based Ellis returns to Mystery One with his new thriller, about a homeless Iraq war veteran accused of murdering a paralegal. Ellis, in addition to writing mysteries, is also counsel to the Illinois House of Representatives. And don't forget, Mystery One generally hosts signings, but authors are always up for good conversation and Q&A.


In this case, we have not linked to our website as we hope you will purchase your copy from the host store if attending the event.

"Why aren't you sending more emails?" one customer recently said to me. It's true, of late we've been down to one monthly event round up. But you can get lots more Boswell in your inbox. Just visit our daily blog page and sign up. It's at the top right corner.

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Recent posts have included reading novels to get a handle on world affairs, and why folks are embarrassed to buy erotica in general but not when it's E. L. James. We have a Saturday gift round up, a Sunday bestseller analysis, and a Monday preview of upcoming events. There is also the link to my recent appearance on Morning Edition. What, you missed it? No problem. Here's the link.
Thank you for Your Patronage,
Daniel Goldin, with Amie, Anne, Beverly, Conrad, Greg, Halley, Jane, Jason, Mel, Nick, Pam, Shane, Sharon, and Stacie.