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Author Events

Left Bank Books Presents: Virginia Slachman - Blood in the Bluegrass

Monday, November 4, 7pm
Left Bank Books

virginia slachman, blood in the bluegrassLeft Bank Books presents award-winning author and St. Louis native, Virginia Slachman, who will sign and discuss her new book Blood in the Bluegrass.

Harper had put the past behind her. Or so she thought. Fleeing the flashy, high dollar world of Kentucky horse racing for NYC, she’d been content living the life of a successful painter. But escape isn’t an option after the accidental death of her sister sends her back to The Bluegrass, a horse racing world filled with drugs and corruption. As the body count rises at Eden Hill, Harper becomes convinced her sister’s death was no accident. Probing more deeply, Harper discovers Paris’ death is tied to a dark and deadly secret, one that’s killing her racehorses. Finding the reason behind her sister’s death and saving her family’s stud farm will take every ounce of Harper’s wit and courage. When seven skeletons are discovered on her property, and the barn with her best Kentucky Derby prospects is set on fire, Harper bears down to find the killer. The problem is, the culprit could be anyone: Is it JD, her childhood sweetheart, Marshall, their long-time trainer, or is it their nasty neighbor Red Cole, in partnership with her family for generations? Someone is on a killing spree, and though Harper doesn’t know why, she is sure of one thing—the murderer is someone she’s known and trusted her whole life.

Horsewoman and novelist Virginia Slachman, captures the essence of why devotees of Thoroughbred racing are so enraptured by the majesty, courage, and sensitivity of the animal. The author has crafted a fast-paced tale of mystery, highlighted by drugs, murder, love, and family, against a backdrop of Bluegrass traditions. Action packed from the get-go and filled with unique characters, the book is hard to put down as it races headlong at full speed to the finish line.

Virginia Slachman spent many years as an award-winning poet and college professor before launching into a career as a memoirist and novelist. Born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, she traveled to Los Angeles and then Aspen following college to discover life outside her Midwest roots. Poetry led to Ph.D. studies at the University of Cincinnati and a long, successful career in the college classroom teaching literature and writing.

This event is free and open to the public, but proof of purchase of Blood in the Bluegrass from Left Bank Books will be required to enter the signing line.

Parking: Lot one block north; street parking (meters free after 7pm). For directions and public transportation information, click here.

Monday, November 4, 2019 - 7:00pm

Ann Cleeves - The Long Call

Monday, November 4, 7pm
St. Louis County Library HQ, 1640 S. Lindbergh

ann cleeves, the long callSt. Louis County Library presents Ann Cleeves, who will be signing and discussing her book The Long Call

From Ann Cleeves, bestselling author of “Vera” and “Shetland,” beloved by readers and TV viewers alike, comes a spectacular new series, told with deep compassion and searing insight. In North Devon, where two rivers converge and run into the sea, Detective Matthew Venn stands outside the church during his estranged father’s funeral. As he turns to walk away, he receives a call from one of his team. A body has been found on the beach nearby: a man with a tattoo of an albatross on his neck. As deadly secrets are revealed, the case calls Matthew back to the people and places of his past.

This event is presented by the St. Louis County Library. For more information, please call 314-994-3300.

Monday, November 4, 2019 - 7:00pm

Dapper Dan - Made in Harlem

Saturday, October 19, 12 pm
Washington University, Knight Hall Emerson Auditorium

Join the Saint Louis Fashion Fund for a very special Speaking of Fashion featuring the legendary Daniel “Dapper Dan” Day

Dapper Dan, Made In HarlemModerated by Tania Beasley-Jolly, Co-Founder, Saint Louis Fashion Fund

With his eponymous store on 125th Street, Dapper Dan pioneered streetwear in the early 1980s, co- opting luxury branding to design original garments with high-end detail. Known for using exquisite leathers, furs, and other fine materials, he first drew powerful New York City hustlers as clientele, who all came due to his strong street reputation as a legendary professional gambler and dandy. He then went on to outfit entertainers and other celebrities, including Eric B. & Rakim, LL Cool J, Salt-N-Pepa, Mike Tyson, Missy Elliott, JAY-Z, Aaliyah, P. Diddy, Floyd Mayweather, and many more. Dapper Dan has been featured on platforms including The New York Times, Elle, Vogue, W, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, CNN, and Netflix. His works have been on display at The Smithsonian, The Museum at FIT, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The Museum of Modern Art.

There will be an opportunity on-site to purchase a copy of Dapper Dan: Made in Harlem: A Memoir and have it signed live by Dapper Dan following the event.

“Speaking of Fashion” is a series of talks featuring industry professionals in fashion and design. The series is hosted by Saint Louis Fashion Fund.

The event is presented by the Saint Louis Fashion Fund. It is free and open to the public. Contact 314.400.9300 for more information.

Generously supported by Urban League of St. Louis and Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts/Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement & Institutional Diversity/The Academy for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion of Washington University-St. Louis

Saturday, October 19, 2019 - 12:00pm

Elin Hilderbrand - What Happens in Paradise

Sunday, October 13, 4pm
St. Charles City-County Library - Spencer Road Branch, 427 Spencer Rd

Elin Hilderbrand, What Happens in ParadiseLeft Bank Books and St. Charles City-County Library present Elin Hilderbrand, who will sign and discuss her new book, What Happens in Paradise. 

In Elin Hilderbrand's follow-up to her national bestseller Winter in Paradise, secret lives and new loves emerge in the bright Caribbean sunlight... Meet Elin and hear her discuss her new novel What Happens in Paradise!

A year ago, Irene Steele had the shock of her life: her loving husband, father to their grown sons and successful businessman, was killed in a helicopter crash. But that wasn't Irene's only shattering news: he'd also been leading a double life on the island of St. John, where another woman loved him, too. Now Irene and her sons are back on St. John, determined to learn the truth about the mysterious life -and death - of a man they thought they knew. Along the way, they're about to learn some surprising truths about their own lives, and their futures. Lush with the tropical details, romance, and drama that made Winter in Paradise a national bestseller, What Happens in Paradise is another immensely satisfying page-turner from one of American's most beloved and engaging storytellers.

Elin Hilderbrand is the mother of three three-sport athletes, an aspiring fashionista, a dedicated jogger, a world explorer, an enthusiastic foodie, and a grateful three-year breast cancer survivor. She spends part of every winter, writing, in St. John.

Please register with St. Charles-City County Library if you wish to attend, RSVP here! Registration is free and open to the public!

Sunday, October 13, 2019 - 4:00pm

Liz Phair - Horror Stories

Wednesday, October 9, 8pm
St. Louis County Library HQ, 1640 S. Lindbergh

liz phair, horror storiesSt. Louis County Library presents award winning musician, Liz Phair, who will sign and discuss her new memoir, Horror Stories.

When singer-songwriter Liz Phair shook things up with her ground-breaking musical debut, “Exile in Guyville”—making her as much a cultural figure as a feminist pioneer and rock star—her raw candor, uncompromising authenticity, and deft storytelling inspired a legion of critics, songwriters, musicians, and fans alike. Now, like a Gen X Patti Smith, the two-time Grammy award-winner reflects on the path she has taken in these piercing essays that reveal the indelible memories that have stayed with her.

This event is presented by the St. Louis County Library. For more information, please call 314-994-3300.

Tickets Available Here!

Wednesday, October 9, 2019 - 8:00pm

Lindy West - The Witches Are Coming

Wednesday, November 13, 7pm
.ZACK, 3224 Locust St

Lindy West, the witches are comingLeft Bank Books presents Lindy West, author of the bestselling memoir Shrill, and executive producer of the acclaimed Hulu adaptation, who will sign her new cultural critique The Witches Are Coming.

In a laugh-out-loud, incisive cultural critique, West extolls the world-changing magic of truth, urging readers to reckon with dark lies in the heart of the American mythos, and unpacking the complicated, and sometimes tragic, politics of not being a white man in the twenty-first century. She tracks the misogyny and propaganda hidden (or not so hidden) in the media she and her peers devoured growing up, a buffet of distortions, delusions, prejudice, and outright bullsh*t that has allowed white male mediocrity to maintain a death grip on American culture and politics-and that delivered us to this precarious, disorienting moment in history.

West writes, "We were just a hair's breadth from electing America's first female president to succeed America's first black president. We weren't done, but we were doing it. And then, true to form-like the Balrog's whip catching Gandalf by his little gray bootie, like the husband in a Lifetime movie hissing, 'If I can't have you, no one can'-white American voters shoved an incompetent, racist con man into the White House."

We cannot understand how we got here-how the land of the free became Trump's America-without examining the chasm between who we are and who we think we are, without fact-checking the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves and each other. The truth can transform us; there is witchcraft in it. Lindy West turns on the light.

Lindy West is a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times. She is the author of Shrill, a memoir, which is being adapted into a Hulu series starring Aidy Bryant. Her essays on feminism, social justice, body image and popular culture have been featured in Jezebel, Cosmopolitan, GQ, and on This American Life. From 2014 to 2017 she wrote a weekly political column for The Guardian. She is also the founder of I Believe You/It's Not Your Fault, an advice blog for teenagers, as well as the reproductive rights destigmatization campaign #ShoutYourAbortion. She lives in Seattle.

Tickets Available Here!

Ticket includes ONE hardcover copy of The Witches Are Coming.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019 - 7:00pm

Penguin Teen Game Night

Tuesday, October 15, 6:30pm; doors open at 6:00pm
510 Euclid, 510 N. Euclid Ave.

Left Bank Books presents Penguin Teen Game Night with young adult authors Rosaria Munda (Fireborne), Tochi Onyebuchi (War Girls) and Natalie C. Parker (Steel Tide)!

penguin teen, game night

First there was the Triwizard Tournament. Then the Hunger Games.

And now, it's Penguin Teen Game Night, and you're invited! (Don't worry, everyone survives.)

Join Penguin Teen and authors Rosaria Munda (Fireborne), Tochi Onyebuchi (War Girls), and Natalie C. Parker (Steel Tide) for an evening of well-mannered frivolity (read: serious laughs and Serious. Geeking. Out.). There will be games! Prizes! Free swag! Plus, get the inside scoop on hot YA books coming in 2020 that you'll want to add to your TBR list stat.

Where does Natalie C. Parker stand on Twilight v. Harry Potter? Is Tochi Onyebuchi's secret superpower a next-level talent for YA book charades? And does newcomer Rosaria Munda have what it takes to be crowned winner of Penguin Teen Game Night? You'll have to be there to find out!

The festivities start at 6:30 pm sharp; doors open at 6:00 pm. Arrive early for a chance to face off against Natalie, Tochi, and Rosaria one-on-one, and to receive personalized reading recommendations from Penguin Teen's in-house expert.

Reserve your free spot at the event today!  Also available are $21 tickets that include a reservation for the featured book of your choice.  All books will be available for purchase at the event as well.

May the odds be ever in your favor!

Rosaria Munda grew up in rural North Carolina, where she climbed trees, read Harry Potter fanfiction, and taught herself Latin. She studied political theory at Princeton and lives in Chicago with her husband and cat.

Tochi Onyebuchi is a writer based in Connecticut. He holds a BA from Yale, an MFA in screenwriting from Tisch, and a JD from Columbia Law School. Tochi is the author of Beasts Made of Night and Crown of Thunder.

Natalie C. Parker is the author of the Beware the Wild duology, the Seafire trilogy, and the editor of Three Sides of a Heart. She earned her BA in English literature from the University of Southern Mississippi and her MA in gender studies from the University of Cincinnati. She grew up in a Navy family finding home in coastal cities from Virginia to Japan. Now, she lives surprisingly far from any ocean on the Kansas prairie where she runs Madcap Retreats with her wife. She tweets @nataliecparker.


Game of Thrones meets Red Rising in a debut young adult fantasy that's full of rivalry, romance...and dragons. 

Annie and Lee were just children when a brutal revolution changed their world. Where once dragons were ridden by the aristocracy alone, now anyone--including the lowborn--can have wealth, an education, and even test into the governing class of dragonriders. Growing up in the same orphanage forged their friendship, and seven years of training have made them rivals for the top position in the dragonriding fleet. But everything changes when survivors from the old regime resurface, bent on reclaiming the right to rule.

With war on the horizon and his relationship with Annie changing fast, Lee must choose between killing the only family he has left, or betraying everything hes come to believe in. And Annie must decide whether to protect the boy she loves or step up to be the champion her city needs.

Two sisters are torn apart by war and must fight their way back to each other in a futuristic, Black Panther-inspired Nigeria.

The year is 2172. Climate change and nuclear disasters have rendered much of Earth unlivable. Only the lucky ones have escaped to space colonies in the sky.

In a war-torn Nigeria, battles are fought using flying, deadly mechs and soldiers are outfitted with bionic limbs and artificial organs meant to protect them from the harsh, radiation-heavy climate. Across the nation, as the years-long civil war wages on, survival becomes the only way of life. 

Two sisters, Onyii and Ify, dream of more. Their lives have been marked by violence and political unrest. Still, they dream of peace, of hope, of a future together. And they're willing to fight an entire war to get there.

The second book in the heart-stopping Seafire trilogy, which follows the captain of an all-female ship intent on taking down a vicious warlord's powerful fleet!

Caledonia may have lost her crew, but she's not done fighting yet. After nearly dying at the hand of a powerful foe, Caledonia is pulled from the sea and nursed back to health by a crew of former Bullets that call themselves Blades. The Blades escaped Aric Athair's clutches and now live a nomadic existence, ready to disappear at a moment's notice should trouble come their way. 

But Caledonia wants to do more than just hide. She wants to find the Mors Navis and her beloved sisters. She wants to continue fighting Aric's fleet and to take back the Bullet seas. She'll need to do everything in her power to convince the Blades that fighting is their only option, that there has to be a life better than the one under Aric Athair's reign, and that finding the women of the Mors Navis is the first step to revolution.

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Tuesday, October 15, 2019 - 6:30pm

Left Bank Books Presents: Ben Crump - Open Season

Tuesday, October 22, 7pm
510 Euclid

Left Bank Books presents the president of the National Bar Association and one of the most distinguished civil rights attorneys working today, Ben Crump, as he reflects on the landmark cases he has battled—including representing Trayvon Martin’s, Michael Brown's, and Stephon Clark's families—and offers a disturbing look at how the justice system is used to promote injustice in his memoir, Open Season.

ben crump, open season

Benjamin Crump firmly believes in the Constitution and its legal protections—that civil rights legislation covers all Americans, not just those privileged by race, wealth, or pedigree. A fierce and passionate advocate, he has devoted his career to fighting for justice for America’s marginalized. Open Season is his inspiring journey working on some of the most egregious cases that have shocked the nation, including those of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown. 

Shaped by his first-hand experience handling civil litigation matters in state and federal courts throughout the country, Open Season reveals the often hidden and systemic injustices minorities face, and illuminates how discrimination in the courthouse devastates real families and communities. Chronicling some of his most memorable legal battles, this brilliant litigator shockingly makes clear how our system is devised for certain people to lose and others to win, and, using evidence and facts, exposes how it is legal to harm—with the intent to destroy—people of color. 

America must live up to its promise to protect the rights of its citizens equally, Crump maintains. Thoughtful, well-reasoned, and powerfully persuasive, Open Season details one man's life mission preserving the hard-won justice for all. 

Through a steadfast dedication to justice and service, renowned civil rights and personal injury attorney Ben Crump has established himself as one of the nation’s foremost lawyers and advocates for social justice. He has worked on some of the most high-profile cases in the U.S., representing the families of Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, and Stephon Clark, among others. He has been nationally recognized as the 2014 NNPA Newsmaker of the Year, The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Lawyers, and Ebony Magazine Power 100 Most Influential African Americans. In 2016, he was designated as an Honorary Fellow by the University of Pennsylvania College of Law. He is the founder and principal owner of Ben Crump Law. 

This event is free and open to the public! RSVP below!

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Tuesday, October 22, 2019 - 7:00pm

Cyrus Grace Dunham - A Year Without a Name

Monday, October 21, 7pm
The Kranzberg Arts Studio, 501 N Grand

cyrus grace dunham, a year without a nameLeft Bank Books is pleased to welcome queer writer and activist Cyrus Grace Dunham, who will sign and discuss their debut memoir, A Year Without A Name.

For as long as they can remember, Cyrus Grace Dunham felt like a visitor in their own body. As a child named Grace, they mastered the art of behaving like a lovable little girl in public. In private, they posed in front of the mirror and lifted their chin up "like men in magazines," calling themselves "Jimmy." Their life was a series of imitations -- daughter, sister, teenage girl, young gay woman -- until their profound sense of alienation became intolerable. This is the story of their search for a new name. 

Writing with disarming emotional intensity in a voice uniquely theirs, our narrator begins as Grace and ends as Cyrus, chronicling a childhood in a family of artists with larger-than-life personalities, bouts of gender dysphoria, obsessive-compulsive disorder, debilitating anxiety, soaring romantic adventures, and the frightening and exhilarating process of gender transition, all the while exploring the complex relationships that lay our foundations, constrain us, and inform our capacity to love. 

Rather than looking back on their transition from a settled distance, Cyrus invites us into the process as it unfolds, honoring the messiness, confusion, self-doubt, terror and thrill of self-discovery. Signaling the arrival of a boldly original writer with a knock-out page presence, A Year Without a Name is a searching, lyrical memoir of transformation as well as a delicately observed portrait of youth.

Monday, October 21, 2019 - 7:00pm

Left Bank Books Presents: Heidi Aronson Kolk - Taking Possession

Tuesday, October 22, 7pm
Left Bank Books

Left Bank Books welcomes assistant professor in Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts and assistant vice provost of academic assessment at Washington University in St. Louis, Heidi Aronson Kolk, who will sign and discuss her book Taking Possession.

Heidi Anderson Kolk, Taking PossessionWest of downtown St. Louis sits an 1851 town house that bears no obvious relationship to the monumental architecture, trendy condominiums, and sports stadia of its surroundings. Originally the residence of a fur-trade tycoon and now the Campbell House Museum, the house has been subject to energetic preservation and heritage work for some 130 years.

In Taking Possession, Heidi Aronson Kolk explores the complex and sometimes contradictory motivations for safeguarding the house as a site of public memory. Crafting narratives about the past that comforted business elites and white middle-class patrons, museum promoters assuaged concerns about the city’s most pressing problems, including racial and economic inequality, segregation and privatization, and the legacies of violence for which St. Louis has been known since Ferguson. Kolk’s case study illuminates the processes by which civic pride and cultural solidarity have been manufactured in a fragmented and turbulent city, showing how closely linked are acts of memory and forgetting, nostalgia and shame.

This event is free and open to the public, but proof of purchase of Taking Possession from Left Bank Books will be required to enter the signing line. 

Parking: Lot one block north; street parking (meters free after 7pm). For directions and public transportation information, click here.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019 - 7:00pm


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