Monday, September 7, 2015

Here's What's Happening at Boswell This Week: Bradley Beaulieu Tuesday, Christopher Moore Wednesday, Daniel Klingler Friday, and next Monday, Lauren Holmes.

We're open 10 am to 5 pm on Labor Day. And when that's over, it's apparently Soul Collection Week. Note the overlap between themes in the new works by Bradley Beaulieu and Christopher Moore. I only just noticed this.

Tuesday, September 8, 7 pm, at Boswell:
Bradley Beaulieu, author of Twelve Kings in Sharakhai: The Song of Shattered Sands: Book One.

Sharakhai, the great city of the desert, center of commerce and culture, has been ruled from time immemorial by twelve kings -- cruel, ruthless, powerful, and immortal. With their army of Silver Spears, their elite ompany of Blade Maidens and their holy defenders, the terrifying asirim, the Kings uphold their positions as undisputed, invincible lords of the desert. There is no hope of freedom for any under their rule. Or so it seems, until Ceda, a brave young woman from the west end slums, defies the Kings' laws by going outside on the holy night of Beht Zha'ir. What she learns that night sets her on a path that winds through both the terrible truths of the Kings' mysterious history and the hidden riddles of her own heritage. Together, these secrets could finally break the iron grip of the Kings' power...if the nigh-omnipotent Kings don't find her first.

Jim Higgins in the Journal Sentinel profiled Beaulieu on Sunday. Here's an interesting note on the concept's origin: "A lover of dark fantasy, Beaulieu imagined ghoulish creatures collecting souls in a big city, a la Sanctuary from the multiple-author anthology Thieves' World. (If you're talking with Beaulieu, have a pencil handy: He loves to mention books and authors he's enjoyed and learned from.) He began to wonder why the ghouls were collecting souls, and imagined their icky presence."

Wednesday, September 9, 7 pm, at Boswell:
A Ticketed event with Christopher Moore, author of Secondhand Souls.

It seems like only yesterday that Charlie Asher took on a very dirty job collecting souls and keeping the Forces of Darkness at bay. He faced off against the denizens of darkness, and may have won the war, but he lost the battle. Fortunately his new girlfriend Audrey has kept his soul alive inside a 14-inch body made of lunchmeat and spare animal parts. But now things are worse again. People are dying but their souls are not being collected. Something or someone is stealing them and no one knows where they are going, and it has something to do with a big orange bridge. So Charlie has to band together with his motley crew (Alphonse, Lily, Minty Fresh, the Emperor of San Francisco et al) while Sophie, his seven-year-old daughter and also the Luminatus, babbles about the epic battle.

Boswellian Conrad Silverberg offers his recommendation: "You wake up in the wee hours of the night with the last few chapters you read still rolling around in your head. Compelled, you leave the comforts of your bed and seek a comfortable spot to read just a little bit more. Upon finishing, you kill the lights, and make your way back to bed in total darkness. You've done this before. You know the way. But, what's this? In your hand the book is glowing! The title and the silly little deathshead toddler are shining in the dark! More macabre DayGlo humor from Moore!"

Tickets are $29 and include admission and a copy of Secondhand Souls. Tickets are available on the website through Brown Paper Tickets. We'll take walk-up tickets after that. Not able to make our event? Purchase a signed copy here.

Oh, and perhaps you need some last-minute prodding from Don Oldenberg in USA Today.

"Deep into Christopher Moore’s fantastically bizarre new novel, Secondhand Souls, Audrey, one of the main characters, explains to a hospital nurse why she must stand vigil by the body of a murdered comrade. She confides that she’s a Buddhist nun working undercover for the San Francisco cops. 'I would watch that show,' says the skeptical nurse. 'I wouldn’t believe it, but I would watch it.' The nurse’s deadpan reply is one of the novel’s countless great lines. It also sums up how you go about reading this wickedly entertaining tale of kinda-ordinary, anti-hero weirdoes fending off Evil Incarnate from the underworld as the Golden Gate City teeters on the brink of the apocalypse. Know up front that suspension of disbelief is the height requirement for this rollicking ride."

Friday, September 11, 7 pm, at Boswell:
Daniel Klingler, author of Everyday Makeup Secrets, part of the Idiot's Guide series. This event is cosponsored by Nail Bar Milwaukee.

Everyday Makeup Secrets shows readers how to achieve everyday looks using reasonably priced makeup. Ideal for any age range, skin type, or skin color, this book features large, full-color photos showing step-by-step application for lips, cheeks, and eyes. It also includes helpful tips on correcting flaws, weather-proofing makeup, caring for skin, and creating the most popular looks.

Here's a photo of Daniel Klinger at his launch at Indy Reads Bookstore. They also had makeup shaped cookies! Klingler also appeared on Indianapolis television to offer some clever makeup tricks. In addition to all the basic information, there are about 60 of them in the book.

We're cosponsoring this event with Nail Bar Milwaukee. Just across the street from us, Nail Bar has found it's place as the go-to destination for manicures, pedicures, and more. A former coworker from Schwartz brought his daughter in from Whitefish Bay and he assured me that Nail Bar has a lot of fans in the metro area. I walked over to talk to Tyan Soo, and the place was bustling! Here's a photo of their nail color wall. It's just the tip of the iceberg, I might add.

It's also fun to have Tyan on the block because she, along with her twin sister, were two of my favorite barristas from the old Steamer's coffee on Water Street, just down the block from the old Harry W. Schwartz in the Iron Block building, where I worked for a number of years. More about Tyan Soo in OnMilwaukee, which recently published a very nice profile.

Sunday, September 13, 11 am, at Boswell:
Story Time with Jannis: Skip on down to Boswell for Story Time! This month, Boswellian Jannis will read Goose Goes to School by Laura Wall and more selections about going back to school. Perfect for ages 18 months and up, this month’s Story Time will put you at the head of the class!

Monday September 14, 7 pm, at Boswell:
Lauren Holmes, author of Barbara the Slut and Other People.

We have two fans on staff of Lauren Holmes's collection. I used some of Scott Espinoza's review in our email newsletter, but he has more to say: "The modern forms of communication, in which everyone is talking and yet no one is listening, are articulated here. Holmes allows us to see into the inner lives of her characters, illuminating the important ways in which they hide from themselves and those they claim to love and adore. When reading these narratives you may find yourself feeling overwhelmingly uncomfortable, perhaps even shocked or offended. But, in the end the reader will realize, if they are being honest, that everything portrayed here is a valid component of what is means to be human in the modern world."

Lauren Holmes talks to Louise Scothern in Granta. Here's how she get the inspiration for one of her stories: "In 2004 I lived with a family in Mexico for a couple of months, and the daughter had this idea that if I sent her Victoria’s Secret underwear, she could sell it to her friends for a lot of money. We never did get involved in panty smuggling, but I couldn’t forget that idea. And as a starting place for a story, it got my wheels turning. Who was going to bring the underwear to whom? What was their relationship? So Lala and her mom somehow came out of that."

Photo credits:
Christopher Moore credit Charlie Moore
Lauren Holmes credit Beowulf Sheehan.

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