Friday, June 14, 2019

As heard on Lake Effect - Summer reading with Mitch Teich

Today I'm saying goodbye to Mitch Teich at WUWM's Lake Effect. We're so excited for him for his new gig as station manager at North Country Public Radio, but so sad that we he won't be here in Milwaukee.*

We've still got some opportunities to say goodbye. There's a Lake Effect on location in Cedarburg this coming Wednesday, June 19 (registration is still open) and Mitch will be in conversation for the last time at Boswell on Monday, June 24, 7 pm, with Dean A Strang, author of Keep the Wretches in Order: America's Biggest Mass Trial, the Rise of the Justice Department, and the Fall of the IWW.

But another last has just aired with Mitch, our last book conversation. Mitch invited me to talk about summer reading, and I came up with a list of books I'd read that I thought might work well. But I couldn't think of a good hook for the talk. And then I came up with the idea of the idea of tying in the books to Milwaukee summer activities. Now I'm going to answer your questions before you ask them.

Why nothing for Summerfest? I didn't really think of the theme until the last minute. Otherwise I would have made sure I read a music-related novel. I read a lot of them. But I haven't read anything lately. There were a number of other festivals where I similarly just didn't have the right book, like Polish Fest. And there were several that worked for multiple celebrations. Vintage 1954 is a wonderful book for Bastille Days but since one of the four protagonists works at Harley Davidson, it also might have worked for the Milwaukee Harley Davidson Rally on Labor Day weekend.

Why no Pridefest? No Juneteenth Day? I didn't know when the program would air, and thought these holidays would have been over by the time the segment was featured.

Their intro: "Have you assembled your summer beach reads yet? While there's lots to do in Milwaukee during the summer, there’s always time to read. Daniel Goldin, of Boswell Book Company, put together a list of books perfect for the wide ranging festivals and activities the city has to offer all summer."

Here's what I did come up with

For Germanfest: Resistance Women, by Jennifer Chiaverini

For the Northwestern Mutual Life agents meeting: If She Wakes, by Michael Koryta

For Bastille Days: Vintage 1954, by Antoine Laurain

For the JCC Summer Festival: Inheritance, by Dani Shapiro (event at Boswell, Tuesday, June 18, 7 pm - register here)

For Zoo a la Carte: Save Me the Plums, by Ruth Reichl

For Wisconsin State Fair: Biloxi, by Mary Miller (at Boswell, Saturday, July 11, 6 pm, with Juliet Escoria, Elizabeth Ellen, and Amanda McNeil)

For Irish Fest: Ask Again, Yes, by Mary Beth Keane

For the Black Arts Festival: Patsy, by Nicole Dennis-Benn

For the Democratic National Convention and the year of planning going on: Girl In the Rearview Mirror, by Kelsey Rae Dimberg (at Boswell Thursday, June 20, 7 pm)

For Maker's Faire: Sweeping Up the Heart, by Kevin Henkes

For the Downer Avenue Classic/Tour of America's Dairyland: The World's Fastest Man, by Michael Kranish

I've read and enjoyed all these books, except for The World's Fastest Man, which was Mitch's pick. Listen to the whole segment here.

The great news is that we'll be continuing the book segments on Lake Effect with Bonnie North. Much thanks for letting me gab about books!

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