April 7, 2018 - 4:00pm

    Prairie Lights

    Mission Creek Event

    The Mission Creek Festival presents essayists Rachel Arndt and LaTanya McQueen, who will read from their work.

    Rachel Arndt will read from Beyond Measure, her new book published by Sarabande. Rachel Arndt's writing has appeared in Popular Mechanics, Quartz, The Believer, and elsewhere. She received MFAs in nonfiction and poetry from the University of Iowa, where she was an Iowa Arts Fellow and nonfiction editor of The Iowa Review. She lives in Chicago.

    LaTanya McQueen will read from her forthcoming collection of essays, And it Begins Like This. McQueen’s writing has been published in The Los Angeles Review, Harpur Palate, Indiana Review, Passages North, Carve Magazine, Fugue, Ninth Letter, Bennington Review, North American Review, New Orleans Review, Fourteen Hills, and other journals. She received her MFA from Emerson College and her PhD from the University of Missouri.


    April 7, 2018 - 2:00pm

    Prairie Lights

    Mission Creek Event

    Mission Creek presents the Writers of Color Reading Series curated by Kundiman, a nonprofit organization dedicated to nurturing generations of writers and readers of Asian American literature. The reading will feature the work of former Kundiman fellows Cathy Linh Che, Melody Gee, Helene Achanzar, Stella Wong, Pam Zhang, and Yvonne Cha.


    April 6, 2018 - 3:00pm

    Prairie Lights

    Mission Creek Event

    The Mission Creek Festival presents a discussion on representation and the current literary scene, in a special event moderated by Sam Chang. Panel members will include Hafizah Geter for VIDA, William Johnson for Lambda, and Cathy Linh Che from Kundiman. Please come to learn more about these literary groups and join the discussion.



    April 6, 2018 - 1:00pm

    Prairie Lights

    Mission Creek Event

    The Mission Creek Festival presents a panel discussion featuring editors from small publishing houses including Sarabande Books, YesYes Books, Canarium Books, Nomadic Press, and the University of Iowa Press, to discuss the ins and outs of indie publishing. Q&A to follow.



    April 5, 2018 - 7:00pm

    Prairie Lights

    Mission Creek Event  

    The Mission Creek Festival presents Deb Olin Unferth and Andrea Lawlor, who will read from their fiction.

    Deb Olin Unferth is the author of five books, including Wait Till You See Me Dance : Stories and the graphic novel I, Parrot. She has received four Pushcart Prizes, and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. An associate professor at the University of Texas in Austin, she also runs the Pen-City Writers, a creative writing program at a penitentiary in southern Texas. She lives in Austin.

    Andrea Lawlor is the author of Paul Takes the Form of a Mortal Girl, published by Rescue Press, and the chapbook, Position Papers, from Factory Hollow Press. They have been awarded fellowships by Lambda Literary and Radar Labs, and their writing has appeared in Ploughshares, Mutha, The Millions, jubilat, The Brooklyn Rail, and elsewhere.  They live in Western Massachusetts with their family.


    April 4, 2018 - 5:30pm

    Prairie Lights

    Mission Creek Event

    Nonfiction Workshop graduates Sarah Viren and Lina María Ferreira Cabeza-Vanegas will read from their recent essay collections.

    Sarah Viren will read from MINE: Essays, recipient of the River Teeth Literary Nonfiction Prize. "With wonderfully precise and evocative prose, Sarah Viren takes us deeply into her search for her very self. . . . MINE is not only moving, it is instructive and nourishing in a way that only art can deliver. This book is a gem."—Andre Dubus III

    Sarah Viren is a writer, translator, and former newspaper reporter. A graduate of the University of Iowa's Nonfiction Writing Program, she teaches at Arizona State University. 

    Lina María Ferreira Cabeza-Vanegas will read from Don’t Come Back. “Lina María Ferreira Cabeza-Vanegas chronicles the immigrant’s ever-present tug of family and the familiar—what is left behind—and the equally strong pull of the new land with its lure of stability and security...Lina’s story asks readers to venture into the migrant heart’s dilemma—to go back or to stay in the new country.”  —Norma E. Cantú

    Lina María Ferreira Cabeza-Vanegas is also the author of Drown/Sever/Sing and winner of the 2016 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award. A graduate of the University of Iowa's Nonfiction Writing Program, she teaches at Arizona State University.


    April 3, 2018 - 7:00pm

    Prairie Lights

    In a special event co-sponsored by The UI College of Public Health, author Lisa Palmer will read from Hot, Hungry Planet: The Fight to Stop a Global Food Crisis in the Face of Climate Change. "Palmer explains the dire consequences of a growing global middle class, ... [and] sees hope in new and diverse economic opportunities based on restoring and nurturing the environment."―Booklist

    Lisa Palmer is a journalist and research fellow who has documented the science, environment, and social challenges of a changing global environment for over 17 years. Palmer is presently a resident senior fellow at the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center in Annapolis, Maryland. Previously, she was a public policy scholar at The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and is one of the few journalists globally to achieve this prestigious distinction. She lives in Maryland.



    April 2, 2018 - 7:00pm

    Prairie Lights

    Kentucky original and long-time Iowa Citian Chris Offutt will return to Prairie Lights to read from Country Dark, his fierce noir-inflected novel about a good man pushed by circumstance into crime. “The talented Offutt here returns to rural Kentucky, the territory defining his fiction and memoirs . . . A rich, compelling story of hardscrabble Kentucky mountain life while showing deep empathy for his careworn characters.” —Publishers Weekly

    Chris Offutt is the author of the short-story collections Kentucky Straight and Out of the Woods, the novel The Good Brother, and three memoirs: The Same River Twice, No Heroes, and My Father, the Pornographer. His work has appeared in Best American Short Stories and Best American Essays, among many other places. He has written screenplays for Weeds, True Blood, and Treme, and has received fellowships from the Lannan and Guggenheim foundations. A graduate and former instructor for The Iowa Writers’ Workshop, Offutt currently teaches at the University of Mississippi.


    March 31, 2018 - 4:00pm

    Prairie Lights


    Sadly, this event has been cancelled due to author illness. We hope to rescheduled for the summer or fall.

    New York Times Bestselling author Tara Westover will read from her memoir, Educated, one of The New York Times Book Review’s Must-Know Literary Events of 2018. Born into an off-the grid survivalist family on a mountain in Idaho, Westover grew up stewing herbs, assisting her midwife mother, and working in her father’s metal scrap yard. Her deeply religious (and likely bipolar) father distrusted formal education (government brainwashing), so none of the seven children were sent to school, and the medical establishment was equally suspect, so all manner of serious health problems were treated at home.

    As a child, Westover achieved a basic grasp of reading, writing, herbal tincture making, and scrap yard work, along with learning selective bits of history and Mormon scripture.

    Tara began to educate herself, and learned enough mathematics and grammar to take the ACT. She was admitted to Brigham Young University, where her quest for knowledge transformed her. After graduating magna cum laude from Brigham Young University she won a scholarship to Cambridge University. She has a PhD in History from Cambridge.  She lives in London.

    “Breathtaking, heart-wrenching, inspirational—I’ve never read anything like this. Educated is one of the best books, and Westover one of the most gifted writers, that I’ve read in a very long time.”
    —Amy Chua


    March 31, 2018 - 11:00am

    Prairie Lights

    Iowa City author and photographer Ina Loewenberg will sign copies of her new memoir A Life à la CarteLoewenberg tells how she moved from one passionate interest to another over her long life without hesitation and with appreciation for what a woman born in 1931 could and couldn’t achieve.

    Ina Loewenberg has worked as a teacher of philosophy, a tax preparer and a hospital internal auditor. She has twice been an older graduate student, earning degrees in philosophy and accounting. Most recently, she has been an active exhibiting photographer.

    * * Please note: a reading will not accompany this signing. * *