15 South Dubuque St. • Iowa City, IA 52240 • 319-337-2681 • 800-295-BOOK • Open 9:00 a.m. daily
Live From Prairie Lights
“Live from Prairie Lights” is an internationally known readings series, which features some of the best up-and-coming and well-established authors & poets from all over the globe. Presented before a live audience and streamed over the world wide web, this long running series brings the spoken word from the bookstore to the masses.
Most readings begin @ 7:00 p.m. Arrive early to assure yourself a seat.
May 20, 2013 - 7:00pm
Rus Bradburd will read from Make It, Take It, an inventive novel that sneaks the reader past the press conferences, locker rooms, and huddles of college basketball.
Without judgment or sentimentality, Rus Bradburd lays bare the web of conflicts between players and coaches, blacks and whites, revealing the complex humanity of a team's inner circle. "Rus Bradburd has given us an original novel about college basketball that is compelling, unsettling, yet downright funny and sad at the same time. Make It, Take It is even better than his incisive non-fiction — and, frankly, that's just not fair." — Dave Zirin
Rus Bradburd is the author of the controversial Forty Minutes of Hell: The Extraordinary Life of Nolan Richardson and a memoir, Paddy on the Hardwood: A Journey in Irish Hoops. He spent fourteen years as a college basketball coach, working for legends Don Haskins and Lou Henson. A regular contributor to SLAM Magazine, his essays have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, Houston Chronicle, and Chicago's Southtown Star. He is married to poet Connie Voisine. They live in New Mexico and Chicago, Illinois.
May 21, 2013 - 7:00pm
Dewitt Henry will read from his chapbook Visions of a Wayne Childhood. Visions of a Wayne Childhood is 21 brief sketches about growing up on the Philadelphia Main Line during the 1940s and 50s. Henry writes: “Contrary to the saying that you can’t go home again, at a lifetime’s distance, I believe that you can and should, and perhaps must, in memory and imagination. More than an exercise in nostalgia, I believe this to be an affirmation of distance and growth.” Or, as Bret Anthony Johnston, author of Corpus Christi: Stories, put it: “DeWitt Henry ushers his readers to better understandings of their own histories.”
Dewitt Henry is the author of Sweet Dreams: a Family History, Safe Suicide: Essays, Narratives, and Mediations, and The Marriage of Anna Maye Potts, which won the Peter Taylor Prize for the Novel. He has edited numerous anthologies and is the founding editor of Ploughshares. He teaches at Emerson College.
May 23, 2013 - 7:00pm
Please join us for the third annual Shelter House Reading, where three writers will read from the second publication of their anthology, Of the Folk: Ordinary Lives Extraordinary Portraits.
This year’s issue Of the Folk features: a meeting with estranged father at the Laundromat . . . the woman who carried a butcher’s knife inside her bra . . . the jutted rock that peaks out the ocean floor . . . an unlikely friendship . . . a personal exploration of inheritance . . . the dawn of a revolution . . .
Prairie Lights will donate 10% of the day’s sales to Shelter House, Iowa City. If you are unable to attend, you can still support Shelter House by shopping at Prairie Lights on May 23rd.
May 28, 2013 - 7:00pm
Benjamin Percy will read from his new novel, Red Moon. "Red Moon is a serious, politically symbolic novel-a literary novel about lycanthropes. If George Orwell had imagined a future where the werewolf population had grown to the degree that they were colonized and drugged, this terrifying novel might be it." — John Irving
Benjamin Percy has won a Whiting Writers Award, a Plimpton Prize, two Pushcart Prizes, and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. He is the author of the novel The Wilding and two short story collections, Refresh, Refresh and The Language of Elk. His work has appeared in Tin House and Best American Short Stories, as well as in many journals and magazines. He is the writer-in-residence at St. Olaf College and teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Pacific University.
Ethan Rutherford will read from his short story collection, The Peripatetic Coffin. Praised by literary greats from Charles Baxter to Ben Fountain and Alice Sebold, The Peripatetic Coffin is alternately funny, menacing, and deeply empathetic. Paul Yoon calls it, "My desert island book. The one I will always carry with me... each story is a vessel of longing and possibility; collectively, they present a mosaic of our past and our future, reinvigorating the art of storytelling... a revelatory feat of the imagination... an incomparable, vital debut.”
Ethan Rutherford's fiction has appeared in Ploughshares, One Story, American Short Fiction, and The Best American Short Stories. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife and son.
June 1, 2013 - 7:00pm
Former Iowa City student and dancer Alex Ko will talk and sign copies of his book, Alex Ko: From Iowa to Broadway, My Billy Elliot Story. Alex Ko made his Broadway debut at age thirteen in the title role of Billy in the Tony Award-winning Billy Elliot: The Musical. Alex studied dance from the time he was five years old, and at the age of twelve he was the youngest student admitted to the University of Iowa Dance Department, where he received college credit with honors distinction. Alex was guided by ballet masters Eloy Barragan and George de la Pena in Iowa City and by Peter O'Brien and Wilhelm Burmann in New York City. Alex has had the distinct honor of being a guest dancer at the White House and has appeared on ABC Family's Bunheads. Alex has won national and regional dance titles and is a USA gymnastics champion coached by 1996 Olympic gold medalist Dmitri Trouch.
June 4, 2013 - 7:00pm
Angela Onwauchi-Willig will read from her book, According to Our Hearts. This landmark book looks at what it means to be a multiracial couple in the U.S. today. It begins with a look back at a 1925 case in which a two-month marriage ends with a man suing his wife for misrepresentation of her race, and shows how our society has yet to come to terms with interracial marriage. Onwuachi-Willig argues that housing law, family law, and employment law fail to protect multiracial couples. In a society in which marriage is used to give, withhold, and take away status—in the workplace and elsewhere—she says interracial couples are at a disadvantage, which is only exacerbated by current law.
Angela Onwuachi-Willig is a Professor of Law at the University of Iowa. Her articles have appeared in or are forthcoming in many prestigious law journals, including the Yale Law Journal, California Law Review, Michigan Law Review, Georgetown Law Journal, and Vanderbilt Law Review. Professor Onwuachi-Willig also has published numerous newspaper opinion-editorials.
June 6, 2013 - 7:00pm
Dmitry Samarov will read from his memoir, Hack: Stories from a Chicago Cab. "Hack is one man's witness to a contrary, luminous, and difficult city. Samarov's city is also Algren's city, Terkel's city, Royko's city. . . . Except Dmitry Samarov gets closer, moving while the city sleeps, and having an actual dialogue with its denizens; we take his journey, through the cruelties and comedies. Think of Zola—if he was driving a cab and had Samarov's mordant gallows humor and humanity as his guide. Dmitry Samarov testifies to our messy, contradictory, and vital city." — Tony Fitzpatrick
Dmitry Samarov earned his BFA in painting and printmaking at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1993 and began driving a cab that same year. His work has been shown at the Chicago Tourism Center, the Merchandise Mart, the Bowery Gallery, and Brandeis University. Samarov is the creator of the blog "Hack," stories from which have been featured in the Chicago Reader and elsewhere.