Wednesday, February 24, 2010

2010 AViD Features Amazing Array of Authors

The Des Moines Public Library will kick off its tenth annual AViD Author Series on Tuesday, April 13 at Hoyt Sherman Place Theater, as writer and filmmaker Peter Hedges returns on book tour for his newest work, The Heights. Hedges grew up in West Des Moines, Iowa, and attended Valley High School. He is best known for his popular book and subsequent movie, What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, as well as recent movies, Pieces of April and Dan in Real Life.

Poet Camille T. Dungy will stop by the Central Library on Wednesday, April 14 to share her recently published collection, Suck on the Marrow. She is also the author of What to Eat, What to Drink, What to Leave for Poison, was a finalist for the PEN Center USA 2007 Literary Award and the Library of Virginia 2007 Literary Award, and currently serves as editor of Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry, which was nominated for an NAACP Image Award for literature.

Legendary writer Ivan Doig will appear at Sheslow Auditorium on Monday, April 19. Doig was born in Montana in 1939, the grandson of homesteaders and the son of a ranch hand and a ranch cook. He grew up along the Rocky Mountain Front that has inspired much of his writing. His first book, the highly acclaimed memoir This House of Sky , was a finalist for the National Book Award, and his many books have received numerous prizes. Additional titles include: Dancing at Rascal Fair, Heart Song, Whistling Season, The Eleventh Man, and many more.

Music fans won’t want to miss a program by writer David Lipsky who will discuss his new biography, Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace on Monday, April 26 at the Central Library. Lipsky is a contributing editor at Rolling Stone magazine and his fiction and nonfiction have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's Magazine, The Best American Short Stories, The Best American Magazine Writing, the New York Times, The New York Times Book Review, and many other publications. He's the author of the novel, The Art Fair, a collection of stories, Three Thousand Dollars, and the bestselling nonfiction book Absolutely American.

Peter Bognanni, a recent graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, returns to Des Moines on Monday, May 10 at the Central Libary to discuss his newly published book, House of Tomorrow. His mother, Kathy Bognanni, is the manager of the Franklin Avenue Library. The book, a debut novel, has already received considerable critical acclaim. Peter is currently Visiting Instructor of Creative Writing at Macalester College in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

Last year, Carolyn Jessop, packed the house when she stopped by the library to discuss her book, Escape, the harrowing story of a woman who not only broke out of the confines of a fundamentalist religious sect but also wrested her children away from it. Her newest book, Triumph: Life After the Cult, details how Jessop overcame the challenges and tragedies that life has presented her and how she continues to fight for the women and children of the FLDS. Her program will be held at Hoyt Sherman Place Theater on Wednesday, May 12.

Investment banking is the timely subject of mystery writer James Grippando’s latest thriller, Money to Burn. Grippando, whom the Wall Street Journal calls "a writer to watch," will visit the Central Library on Monday, May 17. His newest novel explores a world where the destruction of financial institutions and the people who run them can occur in a matter of hours—perhaps even minutes. Grippando is the national bestselling author of sixteen novels that are enjoyed worldwide in twenty-six languages. His latest releases include Last Call, Born to Run, and Intent to Kill.

Best-selling author Gail Sheehy will visit Drake University’s Sheslow Auditorium on Wednesday, May 19 on book tour for her new book, Passages for Caregivers, about the crisis in care-giving. Author of fifteen books, Sheehy is world-renowned for the revolutionary Passages, which remained on The New York Times bestseller list for more than three years and has been reprinted in 28 languages. A Library of Congress survey named Passages one of the 10 most-influential books of our time. In The Silent Passage, she broke the taboo surrounding menopause and opened a dialogue vital to maturing women's health.

Journalist and native Midwesterner Nick Reding spent four years in Iowa prior to writing his New York Times bestseller. Methland: The Death and Life of an American Small Town tells the heroic story of the small town of Oelwein, Iowa and the epidemic of drug abuse in rural America. Methland was picked as a best book of the year by the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Saint Louis Post-Dispatch, the Chicago Tribune, and the Seattle Times. Reding’s presentation will be held on June 3 at 7:00 PM at Hoyt Sherman Place Theater.

Anyone looking for a great summer read will want to mark their calendar for Claire Cook’s upcoming visit to the Central Library on Tuesday, June 15. Cook, the bestselling author of Must Love Dogs and Life’s a Beach, promises to you on a rollicking getaway without leaving the comfort of your own home. Cook is on book tour for her new book, Seven Year Switch. the story of a woman content living a man-free existence, whose ex-husband returns. Then “it takes a Costa Rican getaway to help her make a choice—between the woman she is and the woman she wants to be.”

All programs will begin at 7:00 PM and seating is first come, first serve. Books will be available for sale and signing following each program. For more information about the great authors featured in the 2010 AViD Author Series, watch the library’s web site at: Funding for the AViD Author Series is provided by the Des Moines Public Library Foundation with support from Humanities Iowa, Nationwide, Wells Fargo, Douglas and Deborah West, Drake University, Iowa History Center at Simpson College.

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