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10/28/2014 7:00 pm
Two award-winning Minnesotans read from their fourth books of poems.
Norita Dittberner-Jax is an award-winning poet and essayist whose work has been widely published in small presses. “These are the poems of a woman who has learned that ordinariness is the stuff of most lives and that a poet's difficult task is to illuminate that ordinariness without distorting it,” says the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Stopping For Breath is Dittberner-Jax’s fourth book of poems. Her earlier collections of poetry include The Watch (Whistling Shade Press) and What They Always Were (New Rivers Press) which won the Minnesota Voices Competition and was nominated for a Minnesota Book Award. Pudding House published her chapbook of poetry, Longing for Home. Dittberner-Jax is featured in the anthology 33 Minnesota Poets, as well as To Sing Along the Way: Minnesota Women Poets from Pre-territorial Days to the Present. Her long essay, “The Power of Stone,” was published in 2012, in the national magazine of spirituality and art, Stone Voices.
Norita is a native of Saint Paul. She taught in the Writers-in-the-Schools program, the Perpich Center for the Arts and, until recently, worked as a literacy consultant for Saint Paul Public Schools.
Hailed by William Stafford as a poet whose work “loads the reader with… truly trenchant emotional epiphanies,” Jill Breckenridge has published three books of poetry: How To Be Lucky won the Bluestem Award, judged by William Stafford; Civil Blood was nominated for the American Library Association’s Notable Books of the year. Her third collection, The Gravity of Flesh, won a 2009 Northeastern Minnesota Book Award. Jill’s memoir, Miss Priss and the Con Man, was published in the fall of 2011. Her latest collection of poems, Sometimes, will be published in October, 2014.
11/03/2014 7:00 pm
Getting away from it all--in the heart of the Big Apple.
“All of us sense that we could live better, kinder lives. But Bill Powers has the courage to try to change and then--ever so artfully, without the slightest wag of a finger--to show us how.”--Colin Beavan, author of No Impact Man
Burned-out after years of doing development work around the world, William Powers spent a season in a 12-foot-by-12-foot cabin off the grid in North Carolina, as recounted in his award-winning memoir Twelve by Twelve. Could he live a similarly minimalist life in the heart of New York City? To find out, Powers and his wife jettisoned 80 percent of their stuff, left their 2,000-square-foot Queens townhouse, and moved into a 350-square-foot “micro-apartment” in Greenwich Village. Downshifting to a two-day workweek, Powers explores the viability of Slow Food and Slow Money, technology fasts and urban sanctuaries. Discovering a colorful cast of New Yorkers attempting to resist the culture of Total Work, Powers offers an inspiring exploration for anyone trying to make urban life more people- and planet-friendly.
Born and raised on Long Island, William Powers has worked for over a decade in development aid and conservation in Latin America, Africa, Native North America, and Washington, DC. He is a senior fellow at the World Policy Institute and is on the adjunct faculty of New York University. He is the author most recently of Twelve by Twelve: A One-Room Cabin Off the Grid and Beyond the American Dream. Learn more at www.williampowersbooks.com.
Roxy Orcutt, the Halloween Honey, discusses her book "History and Hauntings of the Halloween Capital"
10/29/2014 7:00 pm
What Minnesota town is the Halloween Capital of the World? Anoka.
History and Hauntings of the Halloween Capital takes a look into why the small village of Anoka, MN has been declared (by Congress and everything!) The Halloween Capital of the World. Roxy Orcutt’s book takes a fun and spooky look at the elements that make up the unique town of Anoka. From the rivers along its borders and limestone under foot to the historical locations and rich characters that helped put Anoka of the world map, even to those characters who seem to stick around after they’ve long shuffled off the mortal coil. History and Hauntings of the Halloween Capital mixes together the popular ghost stories of Anoka as well as answers to the question we in Anoka are so frequently asked, “Why is Anoka the Halloween Capital?”
When Roxy Orcutt started the blog “The Halloween Honey” she wanted to simply share what she loved with the world. History, Halloween, ghosts, witches, vampires, pop culture and the paranormal-something she has been learning about since she was a child-has grown into a passion. Get spooked at www.halloweenhoney.com.
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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.
“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.
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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Common Good Books has signed and personalized editions of Garrison Keillor's new poetry anthology, Good Poems, American Places. This collection is a splendid road trip across the USA with the perfect guide riding shotgun and a welcome addition to anyone's library.
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