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Monday, September 22, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 39.0° F  Fair
The Daily


Wisconsin Book Festival 2008: Patricia Smith speaks

Published last month by Coffee House Press, Blood Dazzler by Patricia Smith is a searing portrait of the horrors wrought by Hurricane Katrina -- told from perspectives including the hurricane itself, its victims and survivors, politicians and more abstract points of view. In an interview conducted via email, Smith describes the genesis of Blood Dazzler assesses the legacy of Katrina, compares the rewards of teaching public-school students vs. prison inmates, and explains the responsibility that comes with fearlessness. >More
 Wisconsin Book Festival 2008: Stephanie Kuehnert speaks

Set in small-town Wisconsin, I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone by Stephenie Kuehnert is a gritty feminist punk-rock celebration of the rebellious bonds that connect a daughter with her absent mother. Published by MTV Books in July, it has been hailed by the Los Angeles Times as "an empowering new twist on a girl's coming of age." In an interview conducted via email, she recounts the genesis of her novel, describes the strength she finds in punk, cops to admiration for Courtney Love, and reveals what she misses about Madison. >More
 The Oprah effect

David Wroblewski spent the better part of a decade crafting The Story of Edgar Sawtelle. Everything since has happened very fast indeed. Published in June to critical acclaim and a lavish testimonial from Stephen King, the northern Wisconsin native's 576-page debut novel climbed The New York Times best-seller list. During a summer book-tour stop in Madison, he was invited to return for the 2008 Wisconsin Book Festival. Then, on Sept. 19, Oprah Winfrey picked The Story of Edgar Sawtelle as the latest title for her book club -- calling it a great American novel comparable to the best of Steinbeck and Harper Lee. >More
 Wisconsin Book Festival 2008: Dave Zirin speaks

Perhaps best known for his Edge of Sports column and radio show, Dave Zirin is the award-winning antithesis of the mainstream sportswriter. His new volume, A People's History of Sports in the United States, was published last month as part of historian Howard Zinn's People's History series for New Press. In 320 pages, Zirin places sports in the socio-political and cultural contexts where they belong, tracing the most courageous and ignominious sports episodes in U.S. history. >More
 Wisconsin Book Festival 2008: John Ivanko and Lisa Kivirist speak

John Ivanko and Lisa Kivirist are the proprietors of Inn Serendipity, an award-winning carbon-negative bed and breakfast on a parcel of farmland in rural Green County, Wisconsin, where they harvest their own organic food, generate power from renewable sources and strive to redefine the good life as one that values purpose, creativity and a slower pace more than money. >More
 Wisconsin Book Festival 2008: Amitava Kumar speaks

A native of India, Amitava Kumar has emerged as one of South Asia's most prominent contemporary voices -- a journalist, author, editor and poet who has earned both critical praise and literary laurels for long-form non-fiction work. In an interview conducted via email, Kumar reflects on how life has changed since 9/11, revisits his recent experience covering the Democratic National Convention, and identifies those other authors he is most looking forward to seeing at the 2008 Wisconsin Book Festival -- including one whose hand he aspires to kiss. >More
 Wisconsin Book Festival 2008: Gail Konop Baker speaks

Gail Konop Baker has been all of the following: advertising executive, stand-up comic, waitress, high-school teacher and journalist. She has written two novels, Waitress of the Month and Paris Smells Like Rotten Eggs, and has been published in Isthmus, Wisconsin Trails, Talking River Review and other journals. To all of these things, add runner, yoga teacher, mother of three, wife and now memoirist. >More
 Madison author Steve Busalacchi goes to the doctors

In case you ever wondered, it is possible for a doctor to perform -- ulp -- his own vasectomy. Steve Busalacchi learned as much in researching White Coat Wisdom, in which he profiles 37 Wisconsin doctors, mostly in question-and-answer interviews. Most of the doctors are from Madison or Milwaukee; some live in small towns like Belleville and Menomonee Falls. They are young and old, male and female. They are from a variety of specialties: Surgery, internal medicine, addiction medicine. Some are from overseas. >More
 Philip Roth and Gail Konop Baker prepare for Wisconsin Book Festival 2008

Organizers of this year's Wisconsin Book Festival continue their buildup to next month's seventh annual event with a special program scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 16. In cooperation with the west-side Borders Books at 3750 University Ave., the festival is presenting a big-screen webcast featuring Philip Roth live from New York City. >More
 David Rhodes' Driftless chronicles life in southwestern Wisconsin

The story of how David Rhodes ended up moving to a farmhouse on the western edge of Sauk County back in 1972 could be an outtake from his latest work, Driftless (Milkweed Editions) - a terrific novel that coalesces around the unexpected connections among people in the fictional community of Words, Wis. >More
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