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09/22/2014 7:00 pm
Join us for a discussion of The Hobbit in its various incarnations over the years.
Since its publication in 1937, The Hobbit, Or There and Back Again has prompted many a spirited conversation. JRR Tolkein’s book has never been out of print and has spawned a number of adaptations over the years--for radio, television, the stage, and the movie screen. But how faithful are these versions to the original?
We’ll address this and many more questions about Bilbo and his journey in “‘That wasn’t in the book!’: A Discussion of The Hobbit on the Page and on the Screen.” Bring your opinions and join the fray. Panelists include:
Joan Marie Verba is the author of the fantasy novel Sword of Queens, an EPIC and Midwest Book Awards finalist, and the Thunderbirds series, all of which received a Mom's Choice Award. She first read The Hobbit when it was assigned reading in her eighth grade English class.
Lyda Morehouse is the author of Archangel Protocol, Fallen Host, Messiah Node, and several other novels. Learn more at www.lydamorehouse.com.
Scott Pearson has published poetry, short stories, and novellas, primarily in science fiction. His most recent publications are “The Squid that Came to Phil’s Basement” in Space and Time Magazine and Star Trek: The More Things Change, a Simon & Schuster eBook. Scott is also a contributor to Middle-earth Envisioned: The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings On Screen, On Stage, and Beyond.
This event is co-sponsored by The Rivendell Discussion Group of the Mythopoeic Society. For more than thirty years, the Rivendell Group has been meeting regularly on or near the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities campus to study, discuss and enjoy myth, fantasy and imaginative literature in the traditions of J.R.R. Tolkien, George MacDonald, Christina Rossetti, T.H. White, Ursula K. LeGuin, Evangeline Walton, C.S. Lewis, Peter Beagle, Patricia McKillip, Jorge Luis Borges, John Gardner, and Angela Carter (among others). Learn more at www.rivendellergroup.com/
09/28/2014 5:00 pm
“Every sentence in Things That Are is as pure and fanciful as frost patterns on a window Pane.”–The Rumpus
A series of essays that progress from the tiniest Earth dwellers to far-flung celestial bodies—considering everything from the similarity of gods to donkeys, to the connection of exploding stars and exploding sea cucumbers—to rekindle our communion with the wild world. Concerned at once with realms animal and human, phenomenal and cosmic, the contents expand and confound the reader’s senses in delightful ways.
You bring the opinions, we’ll supply the wine and cheese. RSVP to Jevin[at]commongoodbooks.com. Buy the book at Common Good Books and get 20% off.
09/23/2014 7:00 pm
Minnesota funny girl takes Hollywood by storm in inimitable Lorna Landvik style.
No one steps up to life’s banquet, holds out her tray, and orders, “Grief, please!” But as a child, Candy Pekkala was served a heaping helping of it. Every buffet line has a dessert section, however, and when a cousin calls with a Hollywood apartment to sublet, it seems as though Candy is finally offered something sweet. It’s good-bye to Minnesota and hello to California, where a girl who has always lived by her wits has a real chance of making a living with them. With that, the irrepressible Lorna Landvik launches her latest irresistible character onto the world stage--or at least onto the dimly lit small stage where stand-up comedy gets its start.
A comic performer, Landvik taps her own adventurous past and Minnesota roots to conjure Candy’s life in this strange new Technicolor home. Her fellow tenants at Peyton Hall include a female bodybuilder, a ruined nightclub impresario, and a well-connected Romanian fortune-teller. There are game show appearances and temp jobs at a record company and an establishment suspiciously like the Playboy Mansion, and of course the alluring but not always welcoming stage of stand-up comedy. As she hones her act, Candy is tested by humiliation, hecklers, and the inherent sexism that insists “chicks aren’t funny.”
Lorna Landvik is the best-selling author of many novels, including Patty Jane’s House of Curl, Angry Housewives Eating Bon-Bons, Oh My Stars, and Mayor of the Universe (Minnesota, 2014). She has performed stand-up and improvisational comedy around the country and is also a public speaker, playwright, and actor, most recently seen in an all-improvised, one-woman show Party in the Rec Room.
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There's no shortage of sequels in the summertime. In fact, a few of our staff's favorite novels are soon to pick up right where they left off...
Enon (Now in Paperback), Paul Harding's follow-up novel to his Pulitzer Prize-winning Tinkers, explores the grief of protagonist Charlie Crosby (grandson of Tinkers character George Crosby) over the loss of his daughter. Peter Recommends
10:04 (Available 9/2), a meta-sequel to Ben Lerner's breakout debut (winner of the 2012 Believer Book Award) Leaving the Atocha Station, finds our unnamed author/narrator under contract with a major publisher, but no more certain how to face the future and the prospect of fatherhood in a city that might soon be underwater. Colin Recommends
Lila (Available 10/7), the last of three novels by Marilynne Robinson set in the fictional plains town of Gilead, Iowa, tells the hardscrabble story of Lila, wife of minister John Ames. Robinson's preceding novels Gilead (2004) and Home (2008) received the Pulitzer and Orange Prizes, respectively. Jean Recommends
Stephan Eirik Clark’s novel Sweetness #9 is a sweet blend of dark satire and light humor. Where does he get his inspiration? Click here to read a few of Clark’s own addictively good book recommendations.
LIT UP LATE: Get your copy of "Wolf in White Van" at Moon Palace Books. And stay for the grand prize drawing!
09/15/2014 11:30 pm
09/16/2014 12:30 pm
“Lit Up Late” gives you three good reasons to stay up and read--Murakami, Mitchell, and Darnielle.
Can’t wait to get your hands on three of this fall’s most-anticipated books? Common Good Books, Magers & Quinn Booksellers, and Moon Palace Books are staying up late so that you don’t have to wait another second. Get three great books as soon as they become available--no delivery hassles, no waiting list, nothing but pure reading pleasure.
Lit Up Late is a mini-series of three late-night literary events in August and September. Mingle with your fellow book lovers, enjoy some music and food, and get your books while the rest of the world is asleep at the switch.
Punches and prizes
Each late night event will feature fun and frivolity, but the truly dedicated have a shot at a very grand prize. Get your Lit Up Late punch card at any of the three participating bookstores. When you buy the featured book at midnight, you get a punch. Attend all three events and buy all three books, and you’re eligible to win our grand prize. One lucky winner will receive a free night at the St Paul Hotel, to get away from it all and read in luxury. (Winners must be present at Moon Palace to win.)
About the books
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is the long-awaited new novel from the award-winning, internationally best-selling author Haruki Murakami--a book that sold more than a million copies the first week it went on sale in Japan. It tells the remarkable story of Tsukuru Tazaki, a young man haunted by a great loss; of dreams and nightmares that have unintended consequences for the world around us; and of a journey into the past that is necessary to mend the present. It is a story of love, friendship, and heartbreak for the ages.
David Mitchell is the author of Cloud Atlas and one of the leading literary voices of his generation. His hypnotic new novel, The Bone Clocks, is a kaleidoscopic novel that begs to be taken apart and put back together by a writer the Washington Post calls “the novelist who's been showing us the future of fiction.”
John Darnielle is a writer, composer, guitarist, and vocalist for the band the Mountain Goats; he is widely considered one of the best lyricists of his generation. His audacious and gripping debut novel Wolf in White Van is a marvel of storytelling brio and genuine literary delicacy. Daniel Handler calls it “quiet, mysterious, menacing, taking you places you will never, never get out of your head”
About the bookstores
Common Good Books (38 S Snelling Ave, St Paul MN 55105; 651/225-8989) is the largest independent bookstore in St Paul. They offer a full selection of books and magazine as well as a full program of readings and author events. Please visit www.commongoodbooks.com for details.
Magers and Quinn Booksellers (3038 Hennepin Ave S, Minneapolis MN 55408; 612/822-4611) is an independently owned new and used bookseller located in the heart of Uptown in Minneapolis, near the lakes for which the city is famous. Their collection covers all subjects and features many unusual and hard-to-find editions, as well as thousands of new releases. Find more information at www.magersandquinn.com.
Moon Palace Books (2820 E 33rd St, Minneapolis MN 55406; 612/454-1505) is an independent bookstore located in the Longfellow neighborhood at Minnehaha Ave and East 33rdst right behind Peace Coffee Wonderland Park and the Trylon microcinema. They've got used books. They've got new books. They’ve got your book. www.moonpalacebooks.com
“I have always felt that a lyric poem that claims an 'I'—that this isn’t fiction. It might be exaggeration or imagination, and it might be flat-out LIES."
The National Book Critics Circle Award winning author of Space, in Chains talks to Common Good Books about her latest collection The Infinitesimals.
09/24/2014 7:00 pm
“Lin Enger writes with durable grace about a man’s quest for redemption and the human capacity for forgiveness.”--Benjamin Percy, author of Red Moon
In 1886, Gretta Pope wakes one morning to discover that her husband is gone. Ulysses Pope has left his family behind on the far edge of Minnesota’s western prairie, with only the briefest of notes and no explanation for why he left or where he’s headed. It doesn’t take long for Gretta’s young sons, Eli and Danny, to set off after him, following the scant clues they can find, jumping trains to get where they need to go, and ending up in the rugged badlands of Montana.
Short on money and beleaguered by a treacherous landlord, Gretta has no choice but to seek out her sons and her husband as well, leading her to the doorstep of a woman who seems intent on making Ulysses her own. While out in the wilderness, the boys find that the closer they come to Ulysses’s trail, the greater the perils that confront them.
Enger’s breathtaking portrait of the vast Plains landscape is matched by the rich expanse of his characters’ emotional terrain, as pivotal historical events—the turmoil of expansionism, the near total demise of the bison herds, and the subjugation of the Plains Indians--blend seamlessly with the story of a family’s sacrifice and devotion.
Common Good Books is pleased to unveil the first in a series of limited edition t-shirts, not available wherever books are sold.
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