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Author Events

LBB Presents ONLINE: Ed Pavlić with Kiese Laymon

Tuesday, April 28, 7pm
Left Bank Books' Facebook Page

Left Bank Books presents poet and author Ed Pavlić in conversation with highly acclaimed author Kiese Laymon to discuss Pavlić's latest novel Another Kind of Madness, on Facebook Live at 7pm on April 28. Join us for this interactive conversation on our Facebook Page and order a copy of Another Kind of Madness from Left Bank Books to support authors and independent bookstores!

https://facebook.com/LeftBankBooks.STL/videos/1474154586097178/

 

Ndiya Grayson returns to her childhood home of Chicago as a young professional, but even her high-end job in a law office can't protect her from half-repressed memories of childhood trauma. One evening, vulnerable and emotionally disarrayed, she goes out and meets her equal and opposite:

Shame Luther, a no-nonsense construction worker by day and a self-taught piano player by night. The love story that ensues propels them on an unforgettable journey from Chicago's South Side to the coast of Kenya as they navigate the turbulence of long-buried pasts and an uncertain future.

A stirring novel tuned to the clash between soul music's vision of our essential responsibility to each other and a world that breaks us down and tears us apart, Another Kind of Madness is an indelible tale of human connection.

"A full-bodied literary achievement bustling with sweat, regret, and sound." --KIESE LAYMON

Ed Pavlić is the author of eight collections of poems, including Visiting Hours at the Coloring Line and Let's Let That Are Not Yet: Inferno, both of which were winners of the National Poetry Series. He has published essays, poems, fiction, and dramatic pieces with dozens of outlets, including the New York Times, Boston Review, Harvard Review, Ploughshares, and Callaloo. His critical work includes 'Who Can Afford to Improvise?' James Baldwin and Black Music, the Lyric and the Listeners and Crossroads Modernism: Descent and Emergence in African American Literary Culture. A recipient of the Author of the Year Award from the Georgia Writers Association and a fellowship from the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute at Harvard University, Pavlić is Distinguished Professor of English and African American Studies at the University of Georgia.

Kiese Laymon - Born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi, Kiese Laymon, Ottilie Schillig Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Mississippi, is the author of the novel Long Division and a collection of essays, How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America. He is also the author of the memoir Heavy. Heavy, winner of the Andrew Carnegie Medal, the LA Times Isherwood Prize for Autobiographical Prose and Audible’s Audiobook of the Year, was named one of the Best Books of 2018 by the The Undefeated, New York TimesPublishers Weekly, NPR, Broadly, Library Journal The Washington Post Southern Living Entertainment Weekly, San Francisco Chronicle and The New York Times Critics.

All you need to do to participate is log in to your personal Facebook account, go to Left Bank Books' Facebook Page, "Like" the page, and wait for the livestream to begin on the page (you may need to refresh the page periodically until the stream begins).

Tuesday, April 28, 2020 - 7:00pm

LBB Presents ONLINE: Mary Pauline Lowry - Roxy Letters

Monday, April 20, 7pm
Left Bank Books' Facebook Page

Left Bank Books presents author Mary Pauline Lowry, who will discuss her novel, The Roxy Letterswith Left Bank Books' Shane Mullen on Facebook Live at 7pm on April 20. Join us for this interactive conversation on our Facebook Page and order a copy of The Roxy Letters from Left Bank Books to support authors and independent bookstores!

Meet Roxy. For fans of Where’d You Go, Bernadette and Bridget Jones’s Diary comes “just the kind of comic novel we need right now” (The Washington Post) about an Austin artist trying to figure out her life one letter to her ex-boyfriend at a time.

Bridget Jones penned a diary; Roxy writes letters. Specifically: she writes letters to her hapless, rent-avoidant ex-boyfriend—and current roommate—Everett. This charming and funny twenty-something is under-employed (and under-romanced), and she’s decidedly fed up with the indignities she endures as a deli maid at Whole Foods (the original), and the dismaying speed at which her beloved Austin is becoming corporatized. When a new Lululemon pops up at the intersection of Sixth and Lamar where the old Waterloo Video used to be, Roxy can stay silent no longer.

As her letters to Everett become less about overdue rent and more about the state of her life, Roxy realizes she’s ready to be the heroine of her own story. She decides to team up with her two best friends to save Austin—and rescue Roxy’s love life—in whatever way they can. But can this spunky, unforgettable millennial keep Austin weird, avoid arrest, and find romance—and even creative inspiration—in the process?

"Roxy is good for a laugh, but her sincerity is even more affecting, especially when it comes to loving a place that has made insiders of so many outsiders.... Reading THE ROXY LETTERS is as refreshing as a dip in Austin's beloved Barton Springs natural swimming hole, the kind of comic novel we need right now. Not just because it is fun, funny and filled with eccentrics, but because Lowry's novel proves that good people working together can make positive changes.”—Bethanne PatrickThe Washington Post

Mary Pauline Lowry is a native of Austin, Texas. She received her MFA from Boise State University. The author of the novels The Roxy Letters and Wildfire, she’s also a regular contributor to O, The Oprah Magazine. Her work has appeared in The New York Times MagazineThe New York TimesThe Millions, and other publications.

All you need to do to participate is log in to your personal Facebook account, go to Left Bank Books' Facebook Page, "Like" the page, and wait for the livestream to begin on the page (you may need to refresh the page periodically until the stream begins).

Monday, April 20, 2020 - 7:00pm

LBB Presents ONLINE: Angie Kim - Miracle Creek

Friday, April 17, 1pm
Left Bank Books' Facebook Page

Left Bank Books presents author Angie Kim, who will discuss her debut novel, Miracle Creek, with Left Bank Books' Shane Mullen on Facebook Live at 1pm. Join us for this interactive conversation on our Facebook Page and order a copy of Mircale Creek from Left Bank Books to support authors and independent bookstores!

The “gripping… page-turner” (Time) hitting all the best of summer reading lists, Angie Kim's Miracle Creek is perfect for book clubs and fans of Liane Moriarty and Celeste Ng

How far will you go to protect your family? Will you keep their secrets? Ignore their lies?

In a small town in Virginia, a group of people know each other because they’re part of a special treatment center, a hyperbaric chamber that may cure a range of conditions from infertility to autism. But then the chamber explodes, two people die, and it’s clear the explosion wasn’t an accident.

A powerful showdown unfolds as the story moves across characters who are all maybe keeping secrets, hiding betrayals. Chapter by chapter, we shift alliances and gather evidence: Was it the careless mother of a patient? Was it the owners, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? Could it have been a protester, trying to prove the treatment isn’t safe?

“A stunning debut about parents, children and the unwavering hope of a better life, even when all hope seems lost" (Washington Post), Miracle Creek uncovers the worst prejudice and best intentions, tense rivalries and the challenges of parenting a child with special needs. It’s “a quick-paced murder mystery that plumbs the power and perils of community” (O Magazine) as it carefully pieces together the tense atmosphere of a courtroom drama and the complexities of life as an immigrant family. Drawing on the author’s own experiences as a Korean-American, former trial lawyer, and mother of a “miracle submarine” patient, this is a novel steeped in suspense and igniting discussion. Recommended by Erin Morgenstern, Jean Kwok, Jennifer Weiner, Scott Turow, Laura Lippman, and more-- Miracle Creek is a brave, moving debut from an unforgettable new voice.

Angie Kim moved as a preteen from Seoul, South Korea to the suburbs of Baltimore. She attended Stanford University and Harvard Law School, where she was an editor of the Harvard Law Review, then practiced as a trial lawyer at Williams & Connolly. Her stories have won the Glamour Essay Contest and the Wabash Prize for Fiction, and appeared in numerous publications including The New York TimesSalonSlateThe Southern ReviewSycamore ReviewAsian American Literary Review, and PANK. Kim lives in Northern Virginia with her husband and three sons.

Miracle Creek is Kim's debut novel.

All you need to do to participate is log in to your personal Facebook account, go to Left Bank Books' Facebook Page, "Like" the page, and wait for the livestream to begin on the page (you may need to refresh the page periodically until the stream begins).

Friday, April 17, 2020 - 1:00pm

LBB Presents ONLINE: Rupert Thomson - Never Anyone But You

Tuesday, April 14, 1pm
Left Bank Books' Facebook Page

Left Bank Books presents acclaimed author Rupert Thomson, who will discuss his book, Never Anyone But You, with Left Bank Books' Shane Mullen on Facebook Live at 1pm. Thomson will join us live from his home in London for this interactive conversation. Order a copy of Never Anyone But You from Left Bank Books to support authors and independent bookstores!

Named a Best Book of the Year by The Guardian, The Observer, and Sydney Morning Herald, Never Anyone But You is a literary tour de force that traces the real-life love affair of two extraordinary women, recreating the surrealist movement in Paris and the horrors of the world wars with a singular incandescence and intimacy.

In the years preceding World War I, two young women meet, by chance, in a provincial town in France. Suzanne Malherbe, a shy seventeen-year-old with a talent for drawing, is completely entranced by the brilliant but troubled Lucie Schwob, who comes from a family of wealthy Jewish intellectuals. They embark on a clandestine love affair, terrified they will be discovered, but then, in an astonishing twist of fate, the mother of one marries the father of the other. As "sisters" they are finally free of suspicion, and, hungry for a more stimulating milieu, they move to Paris at a moment when art, literature, and politics blend in an explosive cocktail.

Having reinvented themselves as Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore, they move in the most glamorous social circles--meeting everyone from Hemingway to Dalí--and produce provocative photographs that still seem avant-garde today. In the 1930s, with the rise of anti-Semitism and fascism, they leave Paris for Jersey, and it is on this idyllic island that they confront their destiny, creating a campaign of propaganda against Hitler's occupying forces that will put their lives in jeopardy.

Brilliantly imagined, profoundly thought-provoking, and ultimately heartbreaking, Never Anyone But You infuses life into a forgotten history as only great literature can.

"A fascinating portrait of two women who challenged gender boundaries and society's norms in all they did, the book builds to a moving celebration of resistance, creativity and self-reinvention." -- The Guardian, Best Books of the Year

"There's so much sheer moxie, prismatic identity, pleasure and danger in these lives...the scenes are tense, particular and embodied...wonderfully peculiar." -- New York Times Book Review

Rupert Thomson is the author of eleven highly acclaimed novels, including Katherine CarlyleSecrecyThe Insult, which was short-listed for the Guardian Fiction Prize and selected by David Bowie as one of his 100 Must-Read Books of All Time; The Book of Revelation, which was made into a feature film by Ana Kokkinos; and Death of a Murderer, which was short-listed for the Costa Novel of the Year Award. His memoir, This Party's Got to Stop, was named Writers' Guild Non-Fiction Book of the Year. He lives in London.

All you need to do to participate is log in to your personal Facebook account, go to Left Bank Books' Facebook Page, "Like" the page, and wait for the livestream to begin on the page (you may need to refresh the page periodically until the stream begins).

Tuesday, April 14, 2020 - 1:00pm

LBB Presents ONLINE: Melissa M. Martin - Mosquito Supper Club

Sunday, May 17, 7pm CST
Left Bank Books' Facebook Page

Left Bank Books and Sister Cities Cajun present a post-Sunday supper conversation with Melissa M. Martin, Cajun chef behind the New Orleans restaurant Mosquito Supper Club, and Travis and Pamela Parfait of St. Louis' Sister Cities Cajun, to celebrate Martin's new cookbook, "Mosquito Supper Club: Cajun Recipes from a Disappearing Bayou." The chefs will discuss recipes, tips and techniques, growing up in the Bayou, and how to help restaurants recover from the pandemic. There will be a giveaway with a t-shirt from Mosquito Supper Club and t-shirt and merchandise from Sister Cities, with a lucky winner randomly selected from customers that purchase a signed copy of Mosquito Supper Club from Left Bank Books!

For anyone who loves Cajun food or is interested in American cooking or wants to discover a distinct and engaging new female voice--or just wants to make the very best duck gumbo, shrimp jambalaya, she-crab soup, crawfish étouffée, smothered chicken, fried okra, oyster bisque, and sweet potato pie--comes "Mosquito Supper Club."

Named after her restaurant in New Orleans, chef Melissa M. Martin's debut cookbook shares her inspired and reverent interpretations of the traditional Cajun recipes she grew up eating on the Louisiana bayou, with a generous helping of stories about her community and its cooking. Every hour, Louisiana loses a football field's worth of land to the Gulf of Mexico. Too soon, Martin's hometown of Chauvin will be gone, along with the way of life it sustained. Before it disappears, Martin wants to document and share the recipes, ingredients, and customs of the Cajun people.

Illustrated throughout with dazzling color photographs of food and place, the book is divided into chapters by ingredient--from shrimp and oysters to poultry, rice, and sugarcane. Each begins with an essay explaining the ingredient and its context, including traditions like putting up blackberries each February, shrimping every August, and the many ways to make an authentic Cajun gumbo. Martin is a gifted cook who brings a female perspective to a world we've only heard about from men. The stories she tells come straight from her own life, and yet in this age of climate change and erasure of local cultures, they feel universal, moving, and urgent.

Melissa M. Martin grew up on the Louisiana coast and has lived in New Orleans for 20 years. After graduating from Loyola University in New Orleans, she worked as an adult literacy teacher until she evacuated to Northern California during Hurricane Katrina. While living there, she worked at some of the top Napa Valley vineyards and restaurants, and this is where she honed her self-taught culinary skills to a professional level. Martin returned to New Orleans three years later and opened Satsuma Café, a casual farm-to-table restaurant, and worked at Café Hope, a nonprofit restaurant, teaching at-risk youth to cook seasonal food. In 2014, she opened Mosquito Supper Club, where she serves family-style meals to small groups of guests who reserve a place at her table months in advance.

All you need to do to participate is log in to your personal Facebook account, go to Left Bank Books' Facebook Page, "Like" the page, and wait for the livestream to begin on the page (you may need to refresh the page periodically until the stream begins).

Sunday, May 17, 2020 - 7:00pm

LBB Presents ONLINE: Kathy Valentine - All I Ever Wanted

Monday, April 27, 7pm
Left Bank Books' Facebook Page

Left Bank Books presents musician, songwriter, and author Kathy Valentine, who will discuss her book All I Ever Wanted, a memoir of her time as bass player with the all-female band the Go-Go's, on Facebook Live at 7pm on April 27. Kathy will be in conversation with journalist Annie Zaleski. Join us for this interactive conversation on our Facebook Page and order a copy of All I Ever Wanted from Left Bank Books to support authors and independent bookstores!

At twenty-one, Kathy Valentine was at the Whisky in Los Angeles when she met a guitarist from a fledgling band called the Go-Go's--and the band needed a bassist. The Go-Go's became the first multi-platinum-selling, all-female band to play instruments themselves, write their own songs, and have a number one album. Their debut, Beauty and the Beat, spent six weeks at the top of the Billboard 200 and featured the hit songs "We Got the Beat" and "Our Lips Are Sealed." The record's success brought the pressures of a relentless workload and schedule culminating in a wild, hazy, substance-fueled tour that took the band from the club circuit to arenas, where fans, promoters, and crew were more than ready to keep the party going.

For Valentine, the band's success was the fulfillment of a lifelong dream--but it's only part of her story. All I Ever Wanted traces the path that took her from her childhood in Texas--where she all but raised herself--to the height of rock n' roll stardom, devastation after the collapse of the band that had come to define her, and the quest to regain her sense of self after its end. Valentine also speaks candidly about the lasting effects of parental betrayal, abortion, rape, and her struggles with drugs and alcohol--and the music that saved her every step of the way. Populated with vivid portraits of Valentine's interactions during the 1980s with musicians and actors from the Police and Rod Stewart to John Belushi and Rob Lowe, All I Ever Wanted is a deeply personal reflection on a life spent in music.

Kathy Valentine is a working musician and songwriter known for being part of the all-female band the Go-Go's. She wrote or cowrote many of the band's most renowned songs, including "Vacation" and "Head Over Heels." In addition to playing music and writing songs, Valentine has worked as an actor, public speaker and spokesperson, and producer. In 2017 she created "She Factory," an event series to raise money for women-centered nonprofits. She currently lives in her hometown of Austin with her daughter, where she plays in a band and is completing her first college degree.

Annie Zaleski is a freelance journalist, editor and critic based in Cleveland, Ohio. Previously, she was the music editor at the Riverfront Times and managing editor at Alternative Press. Her profiles, interviews and criticism have appeared in publications such as Rolling Stone, NPR Music, The Guardian, Salon, Billboard, Stereogum, The A.V. Club, and more. She has won numerous first place awards from the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), including Best Arts Review (Digital Media, Freelance, 2017) and Best Feature Writing (Freelance, Digital Media, 2019). In 2016, she wrote the liner notes for the deluxe edition of R.E.M.'s Out of Time. She is currently working on the book Why the B-52s Matter (University of Texas Press) and a 33 1/3 book on Duran Duran's Rio.

 

All you need to do to participate is log in to your personal Facebook account, go to Left Bank Books' Facebook Page, "Like" the page, and wait for the livestream to begin on the page (you may need to refresh the page periodically until the stream begins).

Monday, April 27, 2020 - 7:00pm

LBB Presents ONLINE: Cooper Lee Bombardier - Pass With Care

Monday, June 15, 7pm
Left Bank Books' Facebook Page

cooper lee bombardier, pass with careLeft Bank Books presents visual artist and writer Cooper Lee Bombardier, who will discuss his debut book about queer and genderqueer identity, resilience, and joy, Pass with Care: Memoirs, on Facebook Live at 7pm. Join us for this interactive conversation on our Facebook Page and order a copy of Pass with Care: Memoirs from Left Bank Books to support authors and independent bookstores!

Pass with Care is a testament to trans resilience, queer joy, and the power of finding freedom and adventure within a community of your own creation. Transgender writer, artist, and activist Cooper Lee Bombardier shifts effortlessly between lyrical essays, poetry, and narrative nonfiction as his own landscape changes over the course of two decades. From working-class New England to the queer punk scene of early '90s-San Francisco to New Mexico's deserts, Bombardier documents his experiences with compassion and reverence, offering us an expansive view of gender and sexuality, masculinity and tenderness, and the difference between surviving and thriving. 

Cooper Lee Bombardier is a writer and visual artist from the South Shore of Boston. HuffPost named him one of "10 Transgender Artists Who Are Changing the Landscape of Contemporary Art." He lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Pass with Care: Memoirs is his first book. 

All you need to do to participate is log in to your personal Facebook account, go to Left Bank Books' Facebook Page, "Like" the page, and wait for the livestream to begin on the page (you may need to refresh the page periodically until the stream begins).

Monday, June 15, 2020 - 7:00pm

CANCELLED: SLCL Presents: Ruth Reichl - Save Me the Plums

Saturday, May 2, 7pm
St. Louis County Library HQ, 1640 S. Lindbergh

ruth reichl, save me the plums

Following recommendations from the CDC, we regret that this event has been CANCELLED.

St. Louis County Library presents food writer Ruth Reichl who will sign and discuss her book, Save Me The Plums.

Trailblazing food writer and beloved restaurant critic Ruth Reichl took the job (and the risk) of a lifetime when she entered the high-stakes world of magazine publishing. Now, for the first time, she chronicles her groundbreaking tenure as editor in chief of Gourmet. Complete with recipes, “Save Me the Plums” is a personal journey of a woman coming to terms with being in charge and making a mark, following a passion and holding on to her dreams—even when she ends up in a place she never expected to be.

Tickets go on sale March 12 and can be purchased through Brown Paper Tickets or at Library Headquarters. Seating will be offered on a first come, first served basis. Call 314-994-3300 for more information. A limited number of pre-sale tickets go on sale March 10, 9:00 a.m. for Friends of the Foundation. Friends members will receive an email with purchasing instructions. Join the Friends at foundation.slcl.org

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

Saturday, May 2, 2020 - 1:00pm

NEW DATE: LBB Presents ONLINE: Michael Kahn - Bad Trust

Monday, June 1, 7pm
Left Bank Books' Facebook Page

Left Bank Books welcomes St. Louis local award winning author Michael Kahn, who will discuss his newest addition to the Rachel Gold Mystery Series, Bad Trust, on Facebook Live at 7pm CST on June 1. Kahn will be in conversation with Mitch Margo, local attorney and author of the novel Black Hearts White Minds. Join us on our Facebook Page and order a copy of Bad Trust from Left Bank Books to support authors and independent bookstores!

Two lawsuits spiral out of control, one ending in murder, the other in courtroom humiliation--both challenging St Louis attorney Rachel Gold

An ugly trust fund dispute among siblings turns deadly when the trustee brother, Isaiah, CEO of the family firm he stole from their father, is murdered in his office. St. Louis attorney Rachel Gold, hired to bring suit against Isaiah on behalf of his sisters, must now defend one against the charge of fratricide. As Rachel and her team seek essential evidence, the widowed Rachel struggles with family issues of her own, including relationships with her young son Sam and the attractive Abe her mother pushes her to do more than date. The jury is still out on whether or not Rachel can create the work-life balance she is seeking. Meanwhile what starts out as a lawsuit filed to cover up a minor fraud by a rich social climber spirals into a courtroom showdown when the victim refuses to be one and hires Rachel to defend him. With few strategic options, Rachel concocts a spectacular courtroom bluff.

Bad Trust, the 11th book in the fascinating Attorney Rachel Gold Mysteries, is the perfect pick for fans of Lisa Scottoline and Sara Paretsky.

Michael Kahn is a trial lawyer by day and an author at night. He wrote his first novel, Grave Designs, on a challenge from his wife Margi, who got tired of listening to the same answer whenever she asked him about a book he was reading. "Not bad," he would say, "but I could write a better book than that." "Then write one," she finally said, "or please shut up." So he shut up-no easy task for an attorney-and then he wrote one. Kahn is the award-winning author of: eleven Rachel Gold novels; three standalone novels: Played!, The Sirena Quest, and, under the pen name Michael Baron, The Mourning Sexton, and several short stories. In addition to his day job as a trial lawyer, he is an adjunct professor of law at Washington University in St. Louis, where he teaches a class on censorship and free expression. Married to his high school sweetheart, he is the father of five and the grandfather of, so far, seven. 

All you need to do to participate is log in to your personal Facebook account, go to Left Bank Books' Facebook Page, "Like" the page, and wait for the livestream to begin on the page (you may need to refresh the page periodically until the stream begins).

Monday, June 1, 2020 - 7:00pm

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