Monday, August 9, 2021

Events! Elm Grove Library presents Hello Sunshine selection from Andrea Bartz, Mirin Fader's Giannis bio, David S Pederson's new Heath Barrington mystery, Megan Abbot's Read with Jenna pick

Virtual programming for Boswell for the week of August 9-15, with a sneak preview for next Monday. It's book club week, as we've got two authors with high-profile book club selections for August.

Monday, August 9, 7 pm
Andrea Bartz, author of We Were Never Here
In conversation with Jennifer Hillier for a virtual event
Register for this event here. Ask for your signed bookplate.

Elm Grove Public Library and Boswell present Milwaukee-area native Andrea Bartz, author of The Lost Night and The Herd for an event featuring her latest thriller, a novel that travels from Milwaukee to Cambodia for a backpacking trip with deadly consequences. We Were Never Here was just named the August selection for Reese Witherspoon's Hello Sunshine Book Club.

Kirkus called the book's plot "exhilarating" and praised this "slow-burn thriller that gradually suffocates both the protagonist and the reader - in a good way."

Emily is in the mountains of Chile with her best friend, Kristen, on their annual reunion trip. But on the last night of the trip, Emily enters their hotel suite to find blood and broken glass on the floor. Kristen says the cute backpacker she brought back to the room attacked her, and she had no choice but to kill him in self-defense. Even more shocking: the scene is horrifyingly similar to last year’s trip, when another backpacker wound up dead. Back home in Wisconsin, Emily struggles to bury her trauma, diving head-first into a new relationship and throwing herself into work. But when Kristen shows up for a surprise visit, Emily is forced to confront their violent past.

Steph Cha, author of Your House Will Pay, says, “Bartz takes a friendship with boundary issues and adds an extra-special ingredient - the permanent, secret alliance of two people who have gotten away with murder… An observant, suspenseful, and deeply scary novel.” And from Zakiya Dalila Harris, author of The Other Black Girl, “A nail-biting, immersive whirl of a read…Brimming with mysterious twists, turns, and a frenemyship of the most chilling proportions, We Were Never Here is every woman’s worst nightmare - and every thriller-lover’s dream.”

Andrea Bartz is author of The Lost Night and The Herd. Her work has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, and Cosmopolitan, and she’s held editorial positions at Glamour, Psychology Today, and Self. Jennifer Hillier is the author of Little Secrets, Creep, and Jar of Hearts.

Tuesday, August 10, 7 pm
Mirin Fader, author of Giannis: The Improbable Rise of an NBA MVP
in Conversation with Chris Herring for a Virtual Event
Register for this event here. Ask for your signed bookplate - limited to the first 150 orders.

Boswell Book Company presents a virtual event with sports writer Mirin Fader for a discussion of her new book, which charts the inspiring story of Giannis Antetokounmpo and his rise to superstardom. In conversation with Chris Herring, Senior Writer for Sports Illustrated.

As the face of the NBA's new world order, Giannis Antetokounmpo has overcome unfathomable obstacles to become a symbol of hope for people all over the world, the personification of the American Dream. But his backstory remains largely untold, and Fader unearths new information about the childhood that shaped him. Fader tells a deeply human story of how an unknown, skinny, Black-Greek teen, who played in the country's lowest pro division and was seen as a draft gamble, transformed his body and his game into MVP material.

Journalist Jemele Hill offers this praise: “Mirin Fader gives readers a gorgeous portrayal of one of the most unique talents to ever play professional basketball. But Giannis is more than just the comprehensive story of a once-in-a-generation athlete. It is the story of how American promise intersects with iron will and heartwarming vulnerability.”

From Boswell buyer Jason Kennedy comes this recommendation: "Mirin Fader lays out the unlikely, Hollywood-esque story of the rise of Giannis, from living in poverty in Greece to the top of the NBA as a two-time MVP of the league. This is a look at how Giannis is Giannis. How Milwaukee was the perfect city to fit his blue collar work ethic and humbleness. It's about how family is the most important thing to him, and where you come from doesn't define you but can be a spring board to fight for a better life. Mirin Fader did hundreds of interviews, far and wide, to cast the largest possible net. Reading some sections of the games Giannis played, I remember being there, sitting in my seat, cheering and watching it unfold. Now, though, I have more perspective. I am even more in awe of Giannis and his family. At the end of it all, one major takeaway for me from this book is that nothing else matters if your family is not there supporting you and you lifting them up, too."

Mirin Fader is a staff writer for The Ringer and has written for Bleacher Report as well. Her work has been honored by the Pro Writers Basketball Association, the AP Sports Editors, and the Los Angeles Press Club, and her work has been featured in the Best American Sports Writing series. Chris Herring is author of Blood in the Garden - available January 2022. He spent five years covering the NBA for ESPN and FiveThirtyEight and covered the Knicks for The Wall Street Journal. He teaches at Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism.

Wednesday, August 11, 7 pm
David S Pederson, author of Death Foretold
A Virtual Event
Register for this event here.

Join us for a virtual evening with the always-charming Milwaukee-area author David S Pederson to celebrate the release of the latest installment of his Lambda Literary Award-nominated Heath Barrington mystery series. Barrington delves into the spirit world to solve the murder of a spiritualist while discovering dark secrets in another detective's past.

A traveling spiritualist is found shot to death in an alley late at night with his underwear around his ankles. But the perpetrator is an enigma. Was it the young trick with a drug problem the spiritualist met in the alley? The unusual woman who runs the boarding house where the trick lives? The dead man’s wife, another spiritualist with secrets of her own? The handsome, alcoholic protégé? The beautiful woman who leads the spiritualist’s fan club? Or someone else altogether?

With a list of suspects a mile long, only Detective Heath Barrington will be able to crack the murder. But Heath’s handsome fellow detective, Grant Riker, has an unlikely connection to their prime suspect that reveals a shady past he’s ashamed to admit. With more questions than answers, a séance may be the only way to the truth. Or perhaps the answer is in the cards? While Heath searches for the murderer, he uncovers more dark secrets than he bargained for, and witnesses firsthand the relentless pressure for LGBTQ+ people in the 1940s to stay hidden in the shadows.

David S Pederson is author of seven Heath Barrington mystery novels, which include the Lambda Literary Award finalists Death Checks In and Death Takes a Bow. His novel Death Goes Overboard was selected by the GLBT Round Table of the American Library Association for the 2018 Over the Rainbow book list.

Thursday, August 12, 7 pm
Megan Abbott, author of The Turnout
in conversation with Erin Lewenauer for a virtual event
Register for this event here. Ask for your signed copy.

Join us for a Thrillwaukee evening with Megan Abbott for her latest psychological thriller, a mesmerizing new novel set against the hothouse of a family-run ballet studio that’s made the Must Read Summer Books lists from Time, The Washington Post, Crimereads, and many more. She'll chat with area writer and critic Lewenauer.

The Turnout was just named the August selection of The Today Show Read with Jenna Book Club.   

With their long necks, matching buns, and pink tights, Dara and Marie Durant have been dancers since they can remember. After their parents' tragic deaths, the sisters began running the school together, along with Charlie, Dara's husband and once their mother's prized student. Circling around one another, the three have perfected a dance that keeps the studio thriving. But when a suspicious accident occurs, just at the onset of the school's annual performance of The Nutcracker - a season of competition, anxiety, and exhilaration - an interloper arrives and threatens the sisters' delicate balance.

Perfect for fans of Black Swan, Abbott’s novel is like a dark noir fairy tale. From The Washington Post, “Abbott is a legend for good reason. No one combines the style of classic noir with the psyches of sophisticated men and women who are willing to do anything – anything - to succeed better than Abbott. Her latest is a dizzyingly fascinating story of a family-owned dance studio and the weight of unrequited ambition. An instant classic.”

Megan Abbott is author of ten novels, including Dare Me, Give Me Your Hand, and You Will Know Me. She earned a PhD in literature from New York University and her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Believer. She is the co-creator and executive producer of USA's adaptation of Dare Me and was a staff writer on HBO's David Simon show The Deuce.

Monday, August 16, 5 pm
Nick Flynn, author of This Is the Night Our House Will Catch Fire
in Conversation with Natasha Trethewey for a Virtual Event
Register for this event here. Ask for your signed bookplate.

Boswell presents a special evening with Nick Flynn, celebrating the paperback release of his latest memoir. Flynn will be in conversation with Pulitzer Prize winner and former US Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey.

When Nick Flynn was a child, his mother set fire to their home. The event loomed large in his imagination for years, but it’s only after having a child of his own that he understands why. He returns with his young daughter to the landscape of his youth, reflecting on how his childhood has him still in its reins, and forms his memories into lyrical, sinister, and wounded bedtime stories.

From the starred Publishers Weekly review: "In this outstanding work, poet and playwright Flynn bookends his first memoir, 2004’s Another Bullsh*t Night in Suck City, with this unsparing look at his early childhood and his mother, who died by suicide when Flynn was 22 years old. He makes a series of visits to his hometown of Scituate, Mass., with his young daughter and describes his solitary childhood spent living with his mother in a small, ugly house that she bought after she left Flynn’s father. When Flynn was seven years old, his mother set fire to the house, an event he is still trying to understand."

Nick Flynn is author of three previous memoirs, including the PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award–winning Another Bullsh*t Night in Suck City, and four volumes of poetry. Flynn is Professor on Creative Writing at the University of Houston. Natasha Trethewey is a former US Poet Laureate and the author of five collections of poetry, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning book Native Guard and the memoir Memorial Drive. She is currently the Board of Trustees Professor of English at Northwestern University. 

Photo credits
Andrea Bartz by Bill Wadman
Mirin Fader by Hana Asano
Nick Flynn by Ryan McGinley
Natasha Trethewey by Nancy Crampton

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