Monday, June 18, 2012

What's Going on the Week of June 18-24 at Boswell? Matthew Batt, Catherine Tuerk, Thomas Peele.

Wednesday, June 20, 7 pm, at Boswell:
Matthew Batt, author of Sugarhouse: Turning the Neighborhood Crack House into Our Home Sweet Home.

Hey, three posts about Sugarhouse in one week?  But I need to update you. We got our copies today, and they went on our author case, in our window, and on a table by the door, that offers out coasters and temporary tattoos to interested parties. And note that you can also make nice Rhoda-Morgenstern-friendly room dividers out of the coaters, but I should warn you that this craft project is not easy. It took me quite a while to punch holes in the coasters, and even longer to string the wire.

Here's Kevin Canfield's take on the book in the Star Tribune: "In a media climate with an epidemic-level glut of books, TV shows, magazines, blogs and Twitter feeds devoted to homeownership, Matthew Batt's new memoir stands out for its allusive, amusing depiction of house-hunting hell." He likes the Yeatsy parts the best.

Thursday, June 21, 7 pm, at Boswell:
Catherine Tuerk, author of Mom Knows: Reflections on Love, Gay Pride and Taking Action.

Catherine Tuerk was inspired by her son's coming out to be a leader in the PFLAG (Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) community, enventually becoming president of the Metro DC chapter. Hey, I have at least two friends who probably know her.

A pscyhotherapist in private practice, she is also the co-founder and past co-director of the Gender and Sexuality Advocacy and Education Program at the Children’s National Medical Center, she now serves that program as senior consultant.

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.

Our event is co-sponsored by Bronze Optical on 1568 North Farwell Avenue.

Friday, June 22, 7 pm, at Boswell: Thomas Peele, author of Killing the Messenger: A Story of Radical Faith, Racism's Backlash and the Assassination of a Journalist.

We interrupt this blogcast to offer a special report from Stacie:

"I'm partway through Thomas Peele's Killing the Messenger and it's absolutely fascinating. He does a great job at drawing the timeline of what led up to this one particular event, with each point on that timeline being detailed in a way that makes it clear to the reader how this country's racial and socioeconomic history set up the perfect stage for the emotional swindling of people more than ripe for it.

"As broadly informed as I like to think I am about the shameful U.S. history of race and religion, I'm equally astonished at the new things I learn about the roots of the Nation of Islam and its even stranger off-shoot sects (like the one the Beys in this book nurtured) as I am learning about the things this country only a few decades ago (like the Mayor of Memphis arresting postal workers in order to prevent them from delivering a newspaper to African American households offering jobs in Chicago).

"There is also a deep sadness I feel caught up in knowing that the same people who are preaching or inciting terrible violence and hatred, are doing so in response to exactly the same thing: terrible violence and hatred. Someone who deliberately bred together a people's identity crisis with cobbled-together bits from different religions makes a clear point when stating that there is no place for them in Christianity if they are treated so poorly by those who call themselves Christians. And, if you are an outcast, a non-white petty thief freshly out of prison, why wouldn't you find yourself drawn to someone who opens their arms to you; offering you a job, helping you stay clean and sober?

"While I'm still seeing all of these threads, carefully unraveled one at a time by a skillful journalist, get lain out, I am eager to discover just how they all weave together again into the braid of investigative reporting that makes up Killing the Messenger."

Here's Thomas Peele on Book TV.

And here's a link to several reviews and interviews.

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