September 21, 2008 in Features

‘Graphic novels’ focus of library’s ‘Let’s Talk’

Dan Webster
 

While it may sound pretentious to call a comic book a “graphic novel” – a term that some authors who work in the genre reject – there’s little argument that the format’s best offers far more literary quality than your standard comic creation.

And that’s especially true of the graphic novels that are included in the “Let’s Talk About It!: Jewish Literature” book-discussion series that is being sponsored for the second year by Spokane Public Library.

The first meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the South Hill Branch, 3324 S. Perry St. And the book to be discussed, Will Eisner’s “A Contract with God,” has been called one of the most influential works of its type.

Library Journal even claims that with his 1978 book, Eisner “invented the graphic novel.”

The series includes several other sterling examples: Oct. 28, Art Spiegelman’s “The Complete Maus: A Survivor’s Tale”; Nov. 18, Ben Katchor’s “Julius Knipl, Real Estate Photographer”; Jan. 6, Harvey Pekar’s “The Quitter”; and Jan. 27, Joann Sfar’s “The Rabbi’s Cat.”

All discussions begin at 6:30 p.m. at the South Hill library and are free and open to the public. They will be moderated by Patricia Terry, a professor of English at Gonzaga University and associate dean of arts and sciences.

Copies of the books are available through the library. Call Louise Sullivan at (509) 444-5386.

Coming authors

Here are some of the featured authors who are coming to read at Auntie’s Bookstore over the coming weeks:

•Oct. 1, Seattle author Garth Stein will read from his novel “The Art of Racing in the Rain,” a charming little book written from the point of view of a dog.

•Oct. 2, Eastern Washington University professor Rachel Toor will read from her book “Personal Record: A Love Affair With Running.”

•Oct. 9, Gonzaga University president Robert Spitzer, S.J., will read from his latest book, “Five Pillars of the Spiritual Life: A Practical Guide to Prayer for Active People.”

•Oct. 16, Idaho writer Kim Barnes will read from her new novel, “A Country Called Home.”

•Oct. 22, Cheney author John Soennichsen will read from his new book, “Bretz’s Flood: The Remarkable Story of a Rebel Geologist and the World’s Greatest Flood.”

•Nov. 7: EWU professor emeritus John Keeble will read from his 1980 novel, “Yellowfish.”

For more information about Auntie’s events, call (509) 838-0206.

Slam time

Two-time World Poetry Slam champion Buddy Wakefield will perform as part of the Junkyard Ghost Revival Slam Poet Tour at 7 p.m. Wednesday at North Idaho College’s Edminster Student Union Building.

Wakefield, who lives in Seattle, will be joined by Derrick Brown and Anis Mojgani. The event is free and open to the public.

Call (208) 665-5459.

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Unless otherwise noted, all events are free and open to the public.

Book talk

•Let’s Talk About It!: Jewish Literature (“A Contract With God,” by Will Eisner), 6:30-8 p.m. Tuesday, South Hill Branch, Spokane Public Library, 3324 S. Perry St. Call (509) 444-5385.

•Friends of the Cheney Community Library Book Discussion Group (“Once Upon a Green Meadow: An American Family’s Struggles Between the Wars,” by Ernestine McMillan Hilton), 7 p.m. Tuesday, Cheney Community Library, 610 First St., Cheney. Discussion leader: Joann Daugherty (author Hilton will attend). Call Joan Tracy at (509) 235-4490.

•Tinman Book Club (“Flight,” by Sherman Alexie), 6-8 p.m. Wednesday, Tinman Gallery, 811 W. Garland Ave. Call (509) 325-1500.

The reader board

•C.K. Crigger (“Black Crossing: A Novel of the American West”), signing, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. today, Valleyfest, Mirabeau Point Park, 13500 E. Mirabeau Parkway, Spokane Valley. Call (509) 922-3299.

•Jim Bennett (“A Life Well Spent”), reading, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Auntie’s Bookstore, Main and Washington. Call (509) 838-0206.

•Antoinette May (“Pilate’s Wife”), reading, 7 p.m. Wednesday, Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front Ave., Coeur d’Alene. Call (208) 769-2315.

•Joshua Ferris (“Then We Came to the End”), reading, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, University of Idaho College of Law Courtroom, Moscow. Call (208) 885-6156.

•Scott W. Reed (“The Treasure Called Tubbs Hill”), reading, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Auntie’s Bookstore.

Dan Webster can be reached at (509) 459-5483 or by e-mail at danw@spokesman.com.

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