Saturday, February 12, 2011

Our New Boyle-Wright Window, Bohjalian Guests, Hessler Slides

Today is the start of the "Frank Lloyd Wright: Organic Architecture for the 21st Century" exhibit at the Milwaukee Art Museum. Our window celebrates Wright and T.C. Boyle, whose novel, The Women, is the subject of their first book salon on Saturday, February 19th, at 10:30 am.

And Boyle is coming to Boswell on Thursday, February 24th. His new book, When the Killing's Done, lands on February 22nd. Fortunately Boyle has a lot of backlist, as it can be tough to promote an event so close to the release of a new book.

For Peter Hessler and Chris Bohjalian's events yesterday (2/11), we brought in their hardcovers, since the paperbacks would not be out on either until just before the events started. I went in a panic as I like to have hardcovers available at paperback reprint events. In Hessler's case, we sold out of hardcovers?

So I'm sure you're wondering, how did the events go and are you going to show me photos?

Bohjalian's event for Secrets of Eden was just lovely--beautiful setting, delicious meal, incredibly charming guest host. Everyone loved it, and why not? At what other event could you speak intimately with an author. Bohjalian sat at a different table for each course. I had hoped to take a photo of each table, but sadly, I got so involved in my dessert conversation that I forgot. Could we do this again? I'd definitely need a larger turnout to continue this. Help me figure out how I can convey the value of this very special kind of event. After the lunch, we had over both sections of the Oprah's Book Club class at Alverno college for a brief talk. Yes, we're a classroom too!

Hessler's talk for Country Driving was great and for once, the weather was perfect, for February at least. And yes, we used the slide projector again. I'm becoming an old pro at this. If you're hosting him at an upcoming event, you should be aware that his wife is Leslie Chang, the author of Factory Girls, and he talks about her and the event in her talk. I'd bring in at least five copies--we sold out immediately and had several more folks asking for it. And just to talk it up further, my sister Claudia (who came out, along with my brother-in-law Les), is a huge fan. Hessler and Chang talk about the same factory in their books, but in a totally different way. Their stories complement each other perfectly.

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