Monday, April 1, 2019

Boswell This Week - Amor Towles sold out, plus Silvia Aceveda, Donna Brazile and Kelly Ayotte at UWM, Tjawangwa Dema at NO Studios, Barbara Ransby at Marquette, Josh Douglas at Shorewood Library, Alyssa Quint and Debra Caplan with Joel Berkowitz, Beverly Lewis at Weyenberg Library, Rochelle Ann Groskreutz and the Easter Bunny, Stacey Lee at Lynden Sculpture Garden, Write Touch Conference, Lee Goldberg and Jon Jordan at Boswell

Greetings Boswell and Books Readers!

The first thing I need to tell everyone is that Boswell will close at 5:00 pm on Wednesday, April 3 so that our booksellers can attend the Amor Towles event at Turner Hall Ballroom. The second thing I need to tell everyone is that the Amor Towles event sold out over the weekend. Sign up for our email newsletter and don't miss another Boswell event. We are likely to have signed copies of A Gentleman in Moscow after the event.

Monday, April 1, 7:00 pm, at Boswell:
S Acevedo, author of God Awful Rebel

Wisconsin journalist and former reporter for Milwaukee’s WISN and WTMJ, Silvia Acevedo, writing as S Acevedo, presents the third and final installment of her mythological adventure series for teens, God Awful Rebel. She’ll chat with Valerie Biel, Wisconsin author of the Circle of Nine fantasy series. This event is perfect for adults and teens.

In God Awful Rebel, the once-banished god of love has saved the kingdom, been declared heir to Olympus, and will wed the girl of his dreams. But when three snake-haired sisters turn out to be not as dead as everyone thought, they threaten all that Cupid holds dear. Add a goddess fighting to hide the truth and ancient elementals bent on revenge, and there might not be any world left to save. The final novel in Acevedo’s God Awful trilogy deftly weaves vignettes of ancient myth into a wholly new, laugh-out-loud story for the modern age.

Silvia Acevedo is a journalist and former television news anchor covering national and international stories for CNN and local television, including Milwaukee’s WISN and WTMJ, and she’s occasionally hosted The Morning Blend. Acevedo is Assistant Regional Advisor for the Wisconsin chapter of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

Monday, April 1, 7:00 pm, at UWM Student Union, 2200 E Kenwood Blvd
Kelly Ayotte and Donna Brazille for 'A Seat at the Table: Women in Leadership and Civic Engagement'

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in partnership with the Tommy G Thompson Center on Public Leadership welcome Donna Brazile and Kelly Ayotte for a lively and thoughtful discussion on women in leadership, contemporary feminism, and the political outlook. Register here for this free event.

Following the talk, Donna Brazille will sign copies of For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Politics, Hacks, and Cooking with Grease. Boswell will be selling books at this event, or you can bring your books from home to get signed.

Tuesday, April 2, 6:00 pm, at NŌ Studios, 1037 W McKinley Ave:
Tjawangwa Dema, author of The Careless Seamstress

NŌ Studios presents an evening entitled ‘Love Letters from the Motherland’ featuring Botswana-born, Bristol-based poet, educator, and arts administrator Tjawangwa Dema, winner of Sillerman First Book Prize for African Poetry. Register for this event at Admission is $10, free for Artist, Social Club, and Corporate Level NŌ Studios members.

This dazzling book debut, following the chapbook Mandible, of the spoken-word poet Tjawangwa Dema evokes the national and the subjective while reemphasizing that what is personal is always political. The girls and women in these poems are not mere objects; they speak, labor, and gaze back, with difficulty and consequence. The female body moves continually across this collection, fetching water, harvesting corn, raising children, sewing, migrating, and spurning designations.

Writing poems that US Poet Laureate Tracy K Smith calls, “bold, roving, and insistent as they are delicate and incisive.” The Careless Seamstress shows both startling clarity of purpose and capaciousness of theme. Using gender and labor as their point of departure, these poems are indebted to Dema’s relationship to language, intertextuality, and narrative. It is both assured and inquiring, a quietly complex skein that takes advantage of poetry’s capacity for the polyphonic.

Thursday, April 4, Noon, at Marquette University, Raynor Memorial Libraries, Beaumier Suites, 1355 W Wisconsin Ave:
Barbara Ransby, author of Making All Black Lives Matter: Reimagining Freedom in the Twenty-First Century

Rescheduled event date! Marquette University presents the 2019 Martin Luther King, Jr/Ralph Metcalfe Chair Lecture, featuring award-winning historian, activist, and Director of the Social Justice Initiative at the University of Illinois at Chicago Barbara Ransby, who documents the roots of the Black Lives movement. Ransby is a founder of African American Women in Defense of Ourselves and the Black Radical Congress. Boswell will be selling books at the event.

Free registration is required to attend. More information and registration on the Raynor Memorial Libraries website, here:

The Washington Post calls Ransby’s book “a powerful - and personal - account of the movement and its players.” The breadth and impact of Black Lives Matter in the United States has been extraordinary. Between 2012 and 2016, thousands of people marched, rallied, held vigils, and engaged in direct actions to protest and draw attention to state and vigilante violence against Black people.

Thursday, April 4, 6:30 pm, at Shorewood Public Library, 3920 N Murray Ave:
Joshua Douglas, author of Vote for Us: How to Take Back Our Elections and Change the Future of Voting

Joshua Douglas, expert on US election law, presents an encouraging assessment of current efforts to make our voting system more accessible, reliable, and effective. Joshua Douglas is Professor at the University of Kentucky College of Law. He is coeditor of Election Law Stories, and his work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Atlantic.This event is also cosponsored by League of Women Voters Milwaukee County.

In contrast to the anxiety surrounding our voting system and voter suppression, there are quite a few positive initiatives toward voting rights reform. Douglas examines these encouraging developments in his inspiring work about how regular Americans are working to take back their democracy, one community at a time.

With narratives of those working on positive voting rights reforms, Douglas examines expanding voter eligibility, enhancing accessibility at the polls, improving civics education, and more in a manner unusually accessible for a lay audience and thoroughly researched, to give anyone fed up with our current political environment the ideas and tools necessary to affect change in their own communities.

Thursday, April 4, 7:00 pm, at Boswell:
Alyssa Quint, author of The Rise of the Modern Yiddish Theater and Debra Caplan, author of the Yiddish Empire: Vilna Troupe, Jewish Theater, and the Art of Itinerancy

Boswell is pleased to host an evening of Jewish Theater history, cosponsored by Sam and Helen Stahl Center for Jewish Studies and moderated by its Director, Joel Berkowitz. Alyssa Quint is Vilna Collections Scholar-in-Residence at YIVO Institute of Jewish Research. She is coeditor of Arguing the Modern Jewish Canon. She is also a member of the Digital Yiddish Theatre Project. Debra Caplan is Assistant Professor of Theater at Baruch College, City University of New York

Alyssa Quint explores the early years of the modern Yiddish theater through the works of one of its best-known figures, Avrom Goldfaden, a playwright, impresario, and pioneer of modern Jewish performance. Quint highlights the important traditions of the Yiddish stage during the Jewish enlightenment and grapples with the origins of the modern Jewish theater that has captured the theater-going public in Broadway shows like Fiddler on the Roof and Indecent.

Debra Caplan tells the story of a group of itinerant performers who became the equivalent of a viral sensation during World War I, a motley group of teenaged amateurs, impoverished war refugees, and out of work Russian actors who banded together to revolutionize the Yiddish stage. Yiddish Empire is the first book, in any language, to tell the story of the Vilna Troupe of Yiddish-speaking theatrical innovators, their persistent homelessness over two decades, and their encounters with other artists as they traveled.

Friday, April 5, 4:00 pm, at Frank L Weyenberg Library, 11345 N Cedarburg Rd:
Beverly Lewis, author of The Tinderbox

The Frank L Weyenberg Library presents Beverly Lewis, New York Times bestselling author of beloved Amish and Mennonite novels and series as she shares her latest, The Tinderbox.

When Sylvia Miller finds the key to an old tinderbox of her father's, her curiosity is piqued. She unlocks the box and uncovers secrets best left alone. Shocked by the revelation it holds, Sylvia confronts her father. The truth about the tinderbox will forever change not only her own life, but also that of her family and her Amish community.

Beverly Lewis is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of numerous Amish and Mennonite novels. A member of the National League of American Pen Women, as well as a Distinguished Alumnus of Evangel University, Lewis has written over 80 books for children, youth, and adults. She has received the Christy Award, the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award, and Crossings Book of the Year, among her many honors.

Saturday, April 6, 11:00 am, at Boswell:
Rochelle Ann Groskreutz, author of Easter Elf

Boswell hosts the launch of Wisconsin author Groskreutz’s brand new picture book, Easter Elf, with a storytime, Easter egg hunt, and a special appearance by the Easter Bunny, who will sign (stamp) books along with the author. A great event for adults and kids age 3 and up! Easter Elf is published by Kwil, a new children’s publisher based in Milwaukee.

This new holiday favorite follows what happens when Easter Elf and Christmas Elf compete in the annual Elf Spring Training. Christmas Elf hops higher, weaves better baskets, and shreds significantly more grass than Easter Elf, who can’t help but feel a little elf-doubt. Will Easter Elf finally get a moment in the spotlight, and even better, the opportunity to help a friend? With luminous illustrations, a laugh-out-loud story, and an endearing cast, Easter Elf is sure to delight elves of all ages.

Wisconsin’s Rochelle Groskreutz is co-regional advisor for the Wisconsin Chapter of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. She has published stories and articles in childrens magazines including Highlights, AppleSeeds, and FACES.

Saturday, April 6, 2:00 pm, at Lynden Sculpture Garden, 2145 W Brown Deer Rd:
Stacey H Lee, author of Outrun the Moon

Lynden Sculpture Garden's Women's Speaker Series welcomes YA author Stacey H Lee for a special YA event, produced by Milwaukee Reads. Tickets cost $18, $16 for Lynden members for one parent and child. Includes your choice of Outrun the Moon or Under a Painted Sky. Stacey H Lee is also the author of the forthcoming The Downstairs Girl. A fourth generation Chinese-American, she graduated from UCLA then got her law degree at UC Davis King Hall

Outrun the Moon weaves together adventure and romance during the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. St. Clare’s School is off limits for all but the wealthiest white girls. Fifteen-year-old Mercy Wong, however, knows that education is the best way out of Chinatown’s squalor. Through a mix of cunning and a little bribery, Mercy gains admittance. Then a massive earthquake destroys Mercy’s home and school.

With the city in shambles and martial law in effect, Mercy must wait with her classmates for their families in a temporary park encampment. Days pass, some families never surface, and the help they’re promised does not arrive. But Mercy’s determination helps create a haven from the ashes for those suffering in her broken city.

A single or additional adult ticket costs $14, $12 for members, and an additional child’s entrance without book costs $6, $5 for members. All tickets include refreshments and admission to the sculpture garden - come early to stroll the grounds. Register online, at, or by phone at 414-446-8794.

Monday, April 8, 7:00 pm, at Boswell:
Lee Goldberg, author of Killer Thriller

Two-time Edgar and Shamus award nominee and writer/producer of television shows like Monk and Diagnosis Murder, Lee Goldberg chats with Crimespree Magazine’s Jon Jordan about Killer Thriller, the action-packed story of hapless Ian Ludlow, a writer drawn into a treacherous plot. This time, Ludlow is in Hong Kong to research his wildest story yet - a deadly global conspiracy by Chinese intelligence to topple the United States. Now our writer hero is trapped in his own terrifying thriller, on the run from assassins, and racing against time to prevent an epic disaster.

Booklist loves Goldberg’s fictional fun, and says, “The pleasure here is watching Goldberg mock the thriller form while creating a first-rate one, boiling with chases, fights, sweaty-palm tension, snappy dialogue, and glamorous, exotic locations - this time, post-Maugham Hong Kong and its stunning outdoor escalators. It's really a sophisticated exercise in metafiction: commenting on narrative while creating it.”

Lee Goldberg is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty novels, including True Fiction, fifteen Monk mysteries, and Fox and O'Hare series, cowritten with Janet Evanovich. He has also written and produced television series, including SeaQuest, Monk, and The Glades. Jon Jordan, in addition to his work at Crimespree, helps organize Milwaukee’s annual Murder and Mayhem crime fiction conference.

More Boswell happenings on our upcoming events page.

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