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Odd Words December 3, 2014

Posted by The Typist in Book Stores, books, Indie Book Shops, literature, memoir, New Orleans, novel, Odd Words, Poetry, publishing, reading, Toulouse Street, Writing.
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This week in literary New Orleans:

& Moira Crone will be at Maple Street Book Shop December 4th at 6PM to read from and sign her new book, The Ice Garden. Ten-year-old Claire adores her brand-new baby sister, but her mother doesn’t feel the same. Trapped in the suffocating culture of the small-town South in the early 1960s, Claire’s mother tries to cope with her own mental illness and all the expectations placed upon a woman of her class. While Claire’s father remains too dazzled by his beautiful wife to recognize the impending dangers, Claire is left largely on her own to save herself and her baby sister—with mesmerizing and shocking consequences. Moira Crone is the author of five books of fiction, including stories, and novels. She lives in New Orleans. Her works have appeared in dozens of anthologies and over forty magazines and journals

& Thursday at 6 pm Room 220 is pleased to present a Happy Hour Salon with poets Andy Young and Sara Slaughter at the Press Street HQ (3718 St. Claude Ave.). The event will celebrate new publications by both poets, and they will be reading from these works. Andy Young’s debut poetry collection, All Night It Is Morning, cuts across geography, politics, language, and culture. Raised in Appalachia, rooted in New Orleans, and now part of an Egyptian-American family with whom she spent the last two years in Cairo, her poetry presents an outward-looking American perspective that reflects a life with one foot each in Western and Arab cultures. Using the aubade, the traditional form of lovers parting at dawn, to anchor the book, Young employs a wide variety of forms to poetically navigate post-Katrina destruction, the tumult of the Arab Spring, and myriad points—personal and political—in between and beyond. The book’s cover, a graffiti mural by Alaa Awad (now destroyed) that led the way to Tahrir Square, is a work both ancient and modern, urban and agrarian, beautiful and horrible. This captures the spirit of the book, steeped in mourning and hope and a belief in the voice of the people. Sara Slaughter will read from her first chapbook, Upriver, published by Press Street and featuring woodcuts by Layla Ardalan. Slaughter lives in New Orleans where she teaches Creative Writing at Lusher Charter School. Her work has recently appeared in New World Writing, The Cortland Review, and PANK.

& Thursday at 6 pm Garden District Book Shop features Christopher Buehlman and The Lesser Dead. New York City in 1978 is a dirty, dangerous place to live. And die. Joey Peacock knows this as well as anybody—he has spent the last forty years as an adolescent vampire, perfecting the routine he now enjoys: womanizing in punk clubs and discotheques, feeding by night, and sleeping by day with others of his kind in the macabre labyrinth under the city’s sidewalks. The subways are his playground and his highway, shuttling him throughout Manhattan to bleed the unsuspecting in the Sheep Meadow of Central Park or in the backseats of Checker cabs, or even those in their own apartments who are too hypnotized by sitcoms to notice him opening their windows. It’s almost too easy. Until one night he sees them hunting on his beloved subway. The children with the merry eyes. Vampires, like him…or not like him. Whatever they are, whatever their appearance means, the undead in the tunnels of Manhattan are not as safe as they once were.

& Octavia Books hosts Dr. Laura Kelley joins us to discuss and sign THE IRISH in NEW ORLEANS at 6 pm. In this well-researched volume, historian Dr. Laura D. Kelley tells the colorful, amusing and often adventurous history of the Irish in New Orleans. From “Bloody” O’Reilly in the 18th century to the great churches and charitable organizations built by the Irish Famine immigrants in the 19th century to the Irish-dominated politics of the 20th century, as well as Irish dance, music and sports, the author introduces the reader to a hitherto untold story of one of America’s most historical cities. The book also includes essays by Betsy McGovern recalling her involvement in the city’s Irish music scene and Terrence Fitzmorris who discusses wakes and funerary practices of the Irish. The lively and readable text is beautifully illustrated with photographs by Carrie Lee Pierson Schwartz that convey the continuing vibrancy of the Irish community of the Crescent City.

& Also on Thursday at 6 pm Award-winning local author, journalist, and lecturer, George Gurtner, will discuss his most recent book, Cast of Characters, colorful true stories of life in and around the Big Easy, at the Nix Library. The book is titled after Gurtner’s column that he wrote for New Orleans magazine for 35 years. His first book was Historic Churches of Old New Orleans

& Tuesday at 7 pm the East Jefferson Regional Library hosts the SciFi, Fantasy and Horror Writer’s Group. James Butler, a writer of science fiction and fantasy (especially steampunk), leads a workshop to encourage the creation of these genres by local authors. Open to all levels. Free of charge and open to the public.

& Friday night at 5:00 pm Octavia Books hosts a children’s book event. Miss Holly will present the Good Night, Sleep Tight (Safe from Snow) Story Hour featuring The Snow Queen by Hans Christian Anderson.

& Every Friday The Rhyme Syndicate presents a spoken word open mic at Dish on Haynes Boulevard hosted by Hollywood. Doors at 8. Admission $7, $5 will college ID. Music by DJ XXL.

& Saturday marks the fifth anniversary of Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day, a holiday started by author Jenny Milchman in order to instill a love of bookstores in children. We’ll have snacks and a special story time with Miss Maureen at 11:30am. She’ll read Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson & The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak. Armed only with an oversized purple crayon, young Harold draws himself a landscape full of wonder and excitement. Full of funny twists and surprises, this joyful story shows just how far your imagination can take you. Harold and the Purple Crayon has delighted readers of all ages for over fifty years. A #1 New York Times bestseller, The Book With No Pictures is an innovative and wildly funny read-aloud by award-winning humorist/actor B.J. Novak. You might think a book with no pictures seems boring and serious. Except… here’s how books work. Everything written on the page has to be said by the person reading it aloud. Even if the words say… BLORK. Or BLUURF. Even if the words are a preposterous song about eating ants for breakfast, or just a list of astonishingly goofy sounds like BLAGGITY BLAGGITY and GLIBBITY GLOBBITY. Cleverly irreverent and irresistibly silly, The Book with No Pictures is one that kids will beg to hear again and again.

& Saturday at 2 pm the Poetry Buffett returns to the Latter Memorial Library. Poets Ralph Adamo, Laura Mullen, and Andrea Young read from their work.

& Sunday at 3 pm Room 220 presents José Torres-Tama Performance Reading / Book Signing for Immigrant Dreams & Alien Nightmares, a debut collection of performance poems & other verse by Torres-Tama.

& This Sunday at 3 pm The Maple Leaf Reading Series features an Open Mic.

& Sunday at 7 pm at the Shadowbox Theater SLAM New Orleans hosts its last open mic and poetry slam of 2014! This will be our final qualifying show before the 2015 semi-finals and finals in January. Poets, there are two qualifications for competing in January’s semi-finals: A. You must compete in at least TWO slams during the 2014 season. B. You must place in the top two (out of poets who have not previously placed in the top two earlier in the year) in at least ONE slam during the 2014 season.

& Monday at 5 pm at the East New Orleans Regional Library New Orleans Spoken Word Artists will present monthly workshops that include poetry writing and performance, with the goal of building community through writing and strengthening students’ written and verbal communication skills.

& Susan Larson, the former book editor of the former Times-Picayune newspaper and member of the National Book Critics Circle hosts The Reading Life on WWNO (89.9 FM) on Tuesdays at 1:30 p.m. She features interviews with authors of local and national interest. Watch Odd Words on Facebook and Google+ on Tuesdays for a complete list of her guests and features.

& Dannielle Owens-Reid and Kristin Russo have created a very important resource, THIS IS a BOOK for PARENTS of GAY KIDS. Join the discussion on Tuesday, 7-8 P.M., at the Central St. Matthew United Church of Christ. Written in an accessible Q&A format, here, finally, is the go-to resource for parents hoping to understand and communicate with their gay child. Through their LGBTQ-oriented site, the authors are uniquely experienced to answer parents’ many questions and share insight and guidance on both emotional and practical topics. Filled with real-life experiences from gay kids and parents, this is the book gay kids want their parents to read. Canadian author Vivek Shraya will join the authors AND will give a reading from from his book, GOD LOVES HAIR, a compilation of short stories following a tender, intellectual, and curious child as he navigates complex realms of sexuality, gender, racial politics, religion, and belonging. Octavia Books will be on site with copies of the book.

& Every Tuesday night get on the list to spit at the longest running spoken word venue in New Orleans at Sweet Lorraine’s Jazz Club hosted by African-American Shakespear. Doors open at 7pm and the Mic pops at 8pm. It is $5 to get in.

& Tuesday at 7 pm the East Jefferson Regional Library hosts an Author Event! Magic in a Shaker, with Marvin Allen. Marvin J. Allen will discuss his new book, but he’ll also talk about two other subjects: the history of Prohibition; and Christmas cocktails. Allen is the bar manager and bartender at the Hotel Monteleone’s Carousel Bar. Voted New Orleans Magazine’s Bartender of the Year in 2005, Allen has been behind the counter for more than 20 years. A member of the United States Bartenders’ Guild, he is a USBG certified spirits professional. Allen’s emphasis on classic ingredients and fresh tastes have earned him several honors: his Southern Comfortini won second place in the Tales of the Cocktail contest in 2003, and in 2004 his Blushing Southern Belle earned honorable mention in the same competition. Allen also placed in the 2010 42 Below Vodka competition with his Peanut Butter and Jelly Martini. A recipient of the 2010 City Business Culinary Connoisseur award, Allen has been an “adopted native” of New Orleans for more than 25 years.

& Wednesday at the Latter Memorial Library A Book Club Named Desire meets. Adults meet to discuss a local classic every fourth Wednesday of the month at 6 pm. For more information, contact Toni at tlmccourt@hotmail.com.

& At 8 pm Wednesday it is Poetry & Music at BJs’ Blood Jet Series at BJ’s at 8 pm. This Wednesday’s featured readers are Tim Earley and Jessica Comola.

& Every Wednesday at 8 pm at the Neutral Ground Coffeehouse there is an hour-long open mic poetry night (or fiction night; whatever you want to read really!).

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