Monday, September 14, 2020

Boswell events - week of September 14, 2020 - Michael Zadoorian, Helen Macdonald (ticketed), Fatimah Asghar, Danny Gardner with Nick Petrie, Natalie Bakopoulos

Here's the scoop on our events over the next week.
Tuesday, September 15, 7 pm
Michael Zadoorian, author of The Narcissism of Small Differences
in Conversation with Luis Resto for a Virtual Event

Join us for a virtual conversation featuring Zadoorian, author of the novels Beautiful Music and The Leisure Seeker, for a conversation about his latest, a hilarious and poignant novel about growing up, buying in, selling out, and the death of irony. Zadoorian will chat with Luis Resto, Detroit-based musician and producer.  This event will be broadcast here via Facebook Live. Fear not, you do not need a Facebook account to view this event. Purchase your copy of The Narcissism of Small Differences for 10% off list price.

Set against the backdrop of bottomed-out 2009 Detroit, a once-great American city now in transition, part decaying and part striving to be reborn, The Narcissism of Small Differences is the story of an aging creative class, doomed to ask the questions: Is it possible to outgrow irony? Does not having children make you a child? Is there even such a thing as selling out anymore? More than a comedy of manners, this is a comedy of compromise: the financial compromises we make to feed ourselves, the moral compromises that justify our questionable actions, and the everyday compromises we all make just to survive in the world. Yet it's also about the consequences of those compromises - and the people we become because of them - in our quest for a life that is our own and no one else's.

Thursday, September 17, 7 pm
Schlitz Audubon Nature Center and Boswell presents
A Ticketed Event with Helen Macdonald, author of Vesper Flights
in Conversation with Lindsay Obermeier for a Virtual Event

Author of the New York Times bestseller H is for Hawk will chat about her latest, a transcendent collection of essays about the human relationship to the natural world. Macdonald will chat with Obermeier, the Schlitz Audubon Raptor Program and Animal Ambassador Director.  Tickets for this virtual event cost $40 each and include admission to view the event and a hardcover copy of Vesper Flights. The first 50 tickets sold will also receive an autographed bookplate. Purchase your tickets directly from Schlitz Audubon Nature Center by clicking this link today! Each ticket purchased helps support the raptor program of the Schlitz Audubon. 

Macdonald's latest is getting raves. It's been named a Best Book of the Summer by The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Time, and more, and has gotten starred reviews from Kirkus and Booklist, which says, "Gorgeously composed, complexly affecting, and stunningly revelatory."

Writing for The New York Times, Parul Sehgal says, "Macdonald experiments with tempo and style, as if testing out different altitudes and finding she can fly at just about any speed, in any direction, with any aim she likes, so supple is her style. She writes about migration patterns and storms, nests as a metaphor for the domestic and the danger of using nature as metaphor at all. I was reminded of the goshawk, so thickly plumed, so powerful that it can bring down a deer, and yet it weighs only a few pounds. These are the very paradoxes of Macdonald's prose - its lightness and force."

With Vesper Flights, Macdonald brings together a collection of her best loved essays, along with new pieces on topics ranging from nostalgia for a vanishing countryside to the tribulations of farming ostriches to her own private vespers while trying to fall asleep. This book is a transcendent collection of essays about the human relationship to the natural world.

Thursday, September 17, 7:30 pm
UWM ACCESS presents
Fatimah Asghar, author of If They Come for Us
A Virtual Event

UWM ACCESS presents nationally touring poet, educator, and performer Asghar who will read poems and have a conversation about her collection, If They Come for Us, a Lambda Literary Award finalist named one of the top ten books of 2018 by the New York Public Library.  Click this link to register for this Zoom event today. And purchase your copy of If They Come for Us for 10% off list price.

Asghar, co-creator of the Emmy-nominated web series Brown Girls, chats about her imaginative, soulful debut poetry collection that captures the experiences of being a young Pakistani Muslim woman in contemporary America. Orphaned as a child, Asghar grapples with coming of age and navigating questions of sexuality and race without the guidance of a mother or father. These poems at once bear anguish, joy, vulnerability, and compassion, while also exploring the many facets of violence: how it persists within us, how it is inherited across generations, and how it manifests itself in our relationships.

Elle magazine calls Asghar's poetry "Elegant and playful... The poet invents new forms and updates classic ones." And The New Yorker adds, "Asghar interrogates divisions along lines of nationality, age, and gender, illuminating the forces by which identity is fixed or flexible. Most vivid and revelatory are pieces such as ‘Boy,’ whose perspicacious turns and irreverent idiom conjure the rich, jagged textures of a childhood shadowed by loss."

Friday, September 18, 7 pm
Danny Gardner, author of Ace Boon Coon
in Conversation with Nick Petrie for a Virtual Event

Boswell hosts Gardner for a chat about the second book in his Elliot Caprice series of historical mysteries that began with A Negro and an Ofay. Gardner will chat with Nick Petrie, author of the five Peter Ash novels.  Register right here for this Zoom event, and preorder your copy of Ace Boon Coon at 10% off the list price from Boswell Book Company now.

It's 1950s Illinois and Elliot Caprice has returned to his rural Southville homestead to help his uncle save the family farm from a drought. As racial tensions between agricultural workers rise, a murder pulls Elliot back to Chicago when his ties to both Jewish and Negro organized crime factions are discovered during a clash of competing interests around the development of the long-awaited Chicago campus of the University of Illinois. Elliot must race to connect a money trail to two more murders to thwart the destruction of Southville - before forces combine to destroy Elliot.

Danny Gardner is author of the Elliot Caprice mysteries and has been actor, screenwriter, and Def Jam Comedian. He is a frequent reader at Noir at the Bar events nationwide, and his writing has appeared in Beat to a Pulp and has been featured in Out of the Gutter and on Noir On The Air. Whitefish Bay author Nick Petrie has written five Peter Ash thrillers, including The Drifter, winner of the ITW Thriller Award and the Barry Award for Best First Novel and The Breaker, which will be published January 2021.

Monday, September 21, 7:30 pm
Natalie Bakopolous, author of Scorpionfish
in Conversation with Valerie Laken for a Virtual Event 

Bakopolous chats about her captivating, transporting novel that's been named a Best Summer Read by The Daily Beast and Alma, which calls it "A novel where you can practically taste summer on its pages... a magnetic story." Bakopolous will be in conversation with Valerie Laken, Associate Professor of English at UWM.  Register for this virtual event right here, and purchase your copy of Scorpionfish from Boswell Book Company for 10% off list price today!

Here's Daniel Goldin on his read of Scorpionfish: Her parents killed in an accident, Mira takes a leave from her teaching job in Chicago to return to the Athens of her birth. Hoping to take up with her long-time, long-distance lover, she learns upon arrival that he has left her for a well-known film actress. Her voice alternates with her new neighbor, a sailor now separated from the seas and also disengaging from his marriage. The story might dissolve into introspection were it not for Athens, equally lush and tranquil and dirty and chaotic, almost a character itself, and certainly the impetus to awaken these souls from their mournful slumber. If your Greek vacation was cancelled this year, reading Scorpionfish might just be the next best thing."

Jesmyn Ward, author of Sing, Unburied, Sing, says "Scorpionfish dazzles, fierce and tender in turn... Savor it, and it will leave you changed." And Claire Vaye Watkins, author of Gold Fame Citrus, says, "a riveting, elegant novel keenly observed in the manner of Elena Ferrante and Rachel Cusk. A divine, chiseled stunner."

More on the Boswell upcoming events page.

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