Monday, June 27, 2022

Three wonderful events this week! Louis Bayard for Jackie & Me (at Boswell - also virtual broadcast), Stephen Anderson for High Wire (at Shorewood Public Library), and Geraldine Brooks for Horse (multi-store virtual)

Monday, June 27, 6:30 pm
Louis Bayard, author of Jackie & Me
in conversation with Christina Clancy, in-person at Boswell - click here to register! 

Boswell Book Company hosts Louis Bayard, the bestselling author of The Pale Blue Eye and Courting Mr. Lincoln, for a conversation about his witty, sensitive new novel about the young Jacqueline Bouvier during the time before she became that Jackie and the marriage that almost never happened. In conversation with Christina Clancy, author of Shoulder Season and The Second Home.

In the spring of 1951, debutante Jacqueline Bouvier, working for the Washington Times-Herald, meets Jack Kennedy, a charming Congressman from a notorious and powerful family, at a party in DC. Young, rebellious, eager to break free from her mother, Jackie is drawn to the elusive young politician, and soon she and Jack are bantering over secret dinner dates and short work phone calls. Only gradually does Jackie begin to realize that she is being groomed to be the perfect political wife, whether Jack is interested in settling down or not. Sharply written, steeped in the era and with witty appearances by members of the extended Kennedy clan, this is Jackie as never before seen, in a story about love, sacrifice, friendship, and betrayal.

Jackie & Me
has earned starred reviews from Kirkus, Booklist, and Library Journal. And from Angie Kim, author of Miracle Creek: "I absolutely adore this novel! It’s a testament to Louis Bayard’s remarkable gifts as storyteller how suspenseful it is, given that we already know this story... or do we? Full of Bayard’s trademark charm and wit, with prose that sings and a perfect voice, Jackie & Me delighted me from beginning to end."

Louis Bayard is a New York Times Notable Book author and has been shortlisted for both the Edgar and Dagger awards for his historical thrillers, which include The Pale Blue Eye and Mr. Timothy. He teaches at George Washington University.

Daniel's note: You can read my blog post on Jackie & Me right here.

Tuesday, June 28, 6:30 pm
Stephen Anderson, author of High Wire
In-Person at Shorewood Public Library, 3920 N Murray Ave - click here for more information.

Shorewood Public Library presents Milwaukee poet Stephen Anderson for a presentation featuring his poetry collection High Wire. Cosponsored by Boswell Book Company; we will be on hand at the event to sell copies.

High Wire is a collection that deals with several themes. It is not a “pandemic book” per se, though it does deal with pandemic-imposed changes and complications that we all have had to face to one degree or another - family separation, loss of connection with friends, death, vulnerability to known and unknown aspects of our lives, love, as well as the risks involved in personal choices that life tosses our way from time to time. In short, we all must venture onto our own personal ‘high wire’ and learn to balance our way to carving our own destiny.

Former Wisconsin Poet Laureate Kim Blaeser offers the following praise for Anderson’s work: "High Wire explores universal emotional territory: the ‘shaky, thin wire we all must tread’ in ‘these dire, barely translatable, times.’ But translate the poet does. Here, through the everyday of beauty of ‘brazen-faced marigolds’ or the in macabre memory of a drowned fisherman, Stephen Anderson looks unflinchingly at the ‘jarring and jagged cut-you-up things,’ but ultimately attests to the way ‘true things linger.’ These stirring poems probe the mysterious edges of those true things, that ‘juncture of the lucid and the luminous.’"

Stephen Anderson is author of In the Garden of Angels and Demons and The Dream Angel Plays The Cello, his work has appeared in Southwest Review, Verse Wisconsin, and Tipton Poetry Journal, among many other outlets, and his poems have been featured by WUWM's Lake Effect. Six of his poems formed the text for a chamber music song cycle entitled The Privileged Secrets of the Arch performed by some musicians from the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and an opera singer.

Thursday, June 30, 7 pm
Geraldine Brooks, author of Horse
in conversation with Sarah Maslin Nir for a virtual event - click here to register for this event. There is a book-with-registration option, and shipping is available to the contiguous United States.

Geraldine Brooks, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of March, People of the Book, and other beloved novels visits virtually for a conversation about her new novel, Horse, a sweeping story of spirit, obsession, and injustice across American history. In conversation with journalist Sarah Maslin Nir, Pulitzer-finalist and staff reporter for The New York Times. Presented by Boswell in partnership with Anderson’s Bookshops, Watermark Books & Café, and Cuyahoga County Public Library.

A discarded painting in a junk pile, a skeleton in an attic, and the greatest racehorse in American history: from these strands, Brooks braids together a novel of art and science, love and obsession, and our unfinished reckoning with racism. Based on the remarkable true story of the record-breaking thoroughbred Lexington, this book is perfect for Brooks’s fans, as she blends real historical figures and fictional characters into a story based on deep research about horse racing in the antebellum period and how it was built on the labor of Black horsemen.

Early reviews are great, and Horse has earned a trifecta of starred reviews from Kirkus, Library Journal, and Booklist, which writes: "With exceptional characterizations, Pulitzer Prize-winner Brooks tells an emotionally impactful tale... settings are pitch-perfect, and the story brings to life the important roles filled by Black horsemen in America’s past. Brooks also showcases the magnificent beauty and competitive spirit of Lexington himself."

Geraldine Brooks is author of the the international bestsellers The Secret Chord, Caleb’s Crossing, and Year of Wonders. She has also written the acclaimed nonfiction works Nine Parts of Desire and Foreign Correspondence. Sarah Maslin Nir was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Local Reporting for her groundbreaking and industry-changing reportage on the working conditions of nail salon workers. 

Daniel's note: Tim McCarthy and I are fans of this one. I still recall fondly Geraldine Brooks's visit to Boswell for Caleb's Crossing. We had a lovely dinner with former booksellers Sharon and Anne. 

Photo credits
Louis Bayard by Anna Carson Dewitt
Christina Clancy by Kate Berg
Geraldine Brooks by Randi Baird

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