Washington Area Literary Calendar: April 20-27, 2009

Sunday, April 19, 2009


6 P.M. Mo Willems, the Caldecott Honor-winning children's author and illustrator, reads from and discusses his new picture book, Watch Me Throw the Ball!. Borders Books & Music - Fairfax, 11054 Lee Hwy., Fairfax. 703-359-8420.

6:30 P.M. Kurt Yeager, a former president and CEO of the Electric Power Research Institute (a leading think tank for the industry), discusses and signs Perfect Power: How the Microgrid Revolution Will Unleash Cleaner, Greener, More Abundant Energy (written with Robert Galvin and Jay Stoller), as part of the new "Relevant Writers" series. Reiter's Scientific & Professional Books, 1990 K St. NW. 202-223-3327.

7 P.M. Adina Hoffman, a Jerusalem-based writer, critic and founder of Ibis Editions, discusses and signs My Happiness Bears No Relation to Happiness: A Poet's Life in the Palestinian Century, her new biography of Palestinian poet Taha Muhammad Ali. Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202-364-1919.


Noon. Poetry at Noon, the series presented by the Library of Congress's Office of Scholarly Programs and Poetry and Literature Center, presents "Shakespeare's Birthday," readings by classical Shakespearean actors as well as members of the audience, all in celebration of the Bard's 445th birthday. Library of Congress, Jefferson Building, Whittall Pavilion, 10 First St. SE.

6 P.M. David Baldacci, reads from and signs his new thriller, First Family. This event will also support the Wish You Well Foundation (sponsoring literacy intiatives), founded by Baldacci and his wife, specifically the "Feeding Body & Mind" program, which distributes free books at foodbanks around the country; attendees are encouraged to bring along books to donate. Borders Books & Music, 18th and L streets NW. 202-466-4999.

7 P.M. Michelle Goldberg, an investigative journalist, discusses and signs The Means of Reproduction: Sex, Power, and the Future of the World. Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202-364-1919.

7 P.M. Moving Words 10th Anniversary Poetry Reading, will feature readings by winners of the 10th annual competition: Jenna Lawrence, Barbara Ann Porte, Katy Richey, Mark Tarallo, Joyce Madelon Winslow and Kathi Wolfe. Their short verse will be displayed on Metro buses throughout Northern Virginia over the next several months. A reception follows. the Dome, 1101 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. 703-228-1854 or www.arlingtonarts.org.

7:30 P.M. Steven Watts, a professor of history at the University of Missouri, presents a lecture on entreprenuer Hugh Hefner, drawn from his recent biography Mr. Playboy: Hugh Hefner and the American Dream, as part of the "Great Lives Lecture Series.". University of Mary Washington, Dodd Auditorium, 1301 College Ave., Fredericksburg. 540-654-1055.


4:30 P.M. Mark Sagoff, a senior research scholar in the university's School of Public Policy, discusses the new edition of his book, The Economy of the Earth: Philosophy, Law, and the Environment, to wind up the 2008-09 season of the "Speaking of Books ... Conversations with Campus Authors" series. University of Maryland - College Park, McKeldin Library, Room 6137, Baltimore Avenue and Rossborough Lane, College Park. 301-405-1000 or www.lib.umd.edu/mck/booktalks.

6:45 P.M. Winifred Gallagher, author of the new book Rapt: Attention and the Focused Life, is joined by Richard Restak, a neuroscientist at the George Washington University Medical Center and author, most recently, of Think Smart: A Neuroscientist's Prescription for Improving Your Brain's Performance, for a joint discussion, "Creating the Focused Life." Restak will lead with an illustrated discussion of what occurs in the brain when we focus, and Gallagher will offer insights based on her experience and research. A book signing follows. S. Dillon Ripley Center, 1100 Jefferson Dr. SW. 202-633-1000 or www.smithsonianassociates.org to RSVP. $20.

7 P.M. Donna Leon, reads from and signs About Face, her new Commissario Guido Brunetti mystery. Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202-364-1919.


7 P.M. Quinn Bradlee, a local filmmaker and children's advocate, discusses and signs A Different Life: Growing Up Learning Disabled and Other Adventures, a memoir of his struggles with Velo-Cardio-Facial Syndrome. Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202-364-1919.

7:30 P.M. Stephen J. Farnsworth, a former journalist and now an assistant professor of communications at the George Mason University, lectures on the presidency of Ronald Reagan, drawing on his recent book, Spinner-in-Chief: How Presidents Sell Their Policies and Themselves. This event is the final evening of the university's 2009 season of the "Great Lives Lecture Series.". University of Mary Washington, Dodd Auditorium, 1301 College Ave., Fredericksburg. 540-654-1055.

7:30 P.M. Aaron David Miller, a State Department veteran and most recently a senior adviser for Arab-Israeli negotiations, discusses his recent book, The Much Too Promised Land: America's Elusive Search for Arab-Israeli Peace. Friendship Heights Village Center, 4433 S. Park Ave., Chevy Chase. 301-656-2797.


Noon. George S. McGovern, the former U.S. senator from South Dakota, discusses and signs his new biography, Abraham Lincoln (part of the "American Presidents" series), as part of the United States Senate Library's obervance of National Library Week, as well as the bicentennial of Lincoln's birth. Russell Rotunda, Russell Senate Office Building, Room 485 Constitution and C NE.. 202-224-7106.

7 P.M. Craig Yoe, an award-winning illustrator and proprietor of his own design firm in New York, discusses and signs his new book, Secret Identity: The Fetish Art of Superman's Co-creator Joe Shuster. He will also speak on Saturday, April 25, at noon at Big Planet Comics, 4908 Fairmont Ave., Bethesda, Md., 301-654-6856. Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202-364-1919.

7 P.M. Megan McCafferty, signs copies of her new young adult novel, Perfect Fifths, which is the conclusion of her series featuring Jessica Darling. This event is part of the store's observance of national "Turnoff Week," an annual enterprise that is the brainchild of the nonprofit Center for Time-Screen Awareness in an effort to promote families and communities to take a break from the barrage of electronic media in their daily lives. Barnes & Noble, 7851 Tysons Corner Ctr., McLean. 703-506-2937.

7:30 P.M. Nalini Nadkarni, a teacher in the Environmental Studies Program at the Evergreen State College and president of the International Canopy Network, discusses and signs Between Earth and Sky: Our Intimate Connections to Trees to mark National Arbor Day. This event is part of the "National Geographic Live!" series. National Geographic, Grosvenor Auditorium, 1600 M St. NW. 202-857-7700 or www.nglive.org to RSVP. $18.

8 P.M. Amy Bloom, author of the novels Come to Me (a National Book Award finalist) and Away, joins novelist Susan Choi, author of The Foreign Student and American Woman, for a joint reading presented by PEN/Faulkner. A reception and book signing follow. Folger Shakespeare Library, 201 East Capitol St. SE. 202-544-7077 or www.penfaulkner.org to RSVP. $15.


Noon. A Multilingual Poetry Slam, along with a book fair, will be held until 3 p.m. The public, and eager poets, are invited. E-mail alexandra@doctorsfororphans.org for details. Barnes & Noble, 7851 Tysons Corner Ctr., McLean. 703-506-2937.

1 P.M. Sanford Gottlieb, discusses and signs Red to Blue: Congressman Chris Van Hollen and Grassroots Politics. Gottlieb was a precinct coordinator for Van Hollen's 2002 campaign for Congress and an adviser on the campaign during 2007 and 2008. Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202-364-1919.

6 P.M. Leonard Pitts Jr., reads from and signs his new novel, Before I Forget. Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202-364-1919.


2 P.M. Tom Lombardo, a poet and editor of After Shocks: The Poetry of Recovery for Life-Shattering Events, will join other contributors for a reading from the anthology. The Writer's Center, 4508 Walsh St., Bethesda. 301-654-8664.

2 P.M. Mario Livio, an astrophysicist and author of The Golden Ratio: The Story of PHI, the World's Most Astonishing Number, discusses his most recent book, Is God a Mathematician?, as part of the museum's "Discovering Art and Science Lecture Series." This event is also the inaugural Rita Jordy & Malcolm Weisenfeld Lowenstein Memorial Lecture. A recpetion follows. Walters Art Museum, Graham Auditorium, 600 N. Charles St., Baltimore. 410-547-9000 to RSVP. $10.

4 P.M. Samrat Upadhyay, a Nepali-born writer who now teaches creative writing at Indiana University, reads from and signs his new collection of short stories, The Royal Ghosts. Busboys and Poets, 2021 14th St. NW. 202-387-7638.

4:30 P.M. Roz Chast, the award-winning cartoonist and author whose work has graced the pages of the New Yorker magazine for over 30 years, reflects on Charles Addam's 1946 drawing, "Boiling Oil," the final talk in the American Pictures Distinguished Lecture Series. This series, sponsored by Washington College, the National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian American Art Museum, will be held in the Nan Tucker McEvoy Auditorium, Reynolds Center for American Art & Portraiture (which serves both museums). Free tickets are available starting at 3:30 p.m.; doors open at 4 p.m. Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture, Eighth Street NW. 202-633-1000 or www.reynoldscenter.org.

5 P.M. Gavin Schmidt, a climate scientist at NASA, joins photographer Joshua Wolfe for a discussion of their new book, Climate Change: Picturing the Science. A book signing follows. Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202-364-1919.


The Prince of Peace Presbyterian Church, loacted at 1657 Crofton Pkwy., Crofton, Md., will hold its third annual Book and Media Sale on Friday, April 24, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., and Saturday, April 25, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For details, call 410-721-2313.

The Aspen Hill Library (4407 Aspen Hill Rd., Aspen, Md.) will hold a used book sale on Saturday, April 25, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call 240-773-9410 for details.

The Friends of the Reston Regional Library will hold its 18th semi-annual Used Book Sale April 24-26, starting off with a "Friends Night" preview on Thursday, April 23, from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. That evening, book browsers can start or renew a membership with the group and get an early look at what's on offer. Hours for the rest of the sale are: Friday, April 24, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, April 25, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; and Sunday, April 26, noon to 3:30 p.m. The library is loacted at 11925 Bowman Towne Dr. in Reston, Va. Call 703-689-2700 or visit www.restonfriends.blogspot.com for details.

And for those planning ahead -- The Friends of the Palisades Library (4901 V St. NW) will hold a Used Book Sale Saturday, May 16, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday, May 17, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., on the library's second floor.

Call 202-966-2873 for details.


April 23 is the official launch of D.C.'s Big Read '09. Sponsored locally by the Humanities Council of Washington, D.C., this third annual event is part of the National Endowment for the Arts' initiative "designed to restore reading to the center of American culture" by encouraging entire communities to read and discuss the same book over a one-month period.

D.C.'s selection this year is Carson McCuller's first novel, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter. To mark the opening, the storytelling group SpeakeasyDC will host "Outside Looking In," an evening of true stories in tribute to McCuller's novel that will mirror several themes in the book, which is set amidst the hardships of a small Georgia town in the 1930s. It all takes place at Busboys and Poets (D.C.), 2021 14th St. NW. And in a nod to the theme of this year's Big Read, the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library (901 G St. NW) will hold a special exhibition, "Scenes of Washington, D.C. in the 1930s," drawn from photographs and newspapers from the library's Washingtoniana division, running April 1-May 23. Call 202-727-1312 for details. The honorary chair of this year's event is local writer George Pelecanos, well known for his Derek Strange/Terry Quinn thrillers, as well as for his work on HBO's series "The Wire." The Humanities Council and the D.C. Arts Commission, in cooperation with the D.C. Public Library and public school system, will sponsor related events (readings, book discussions, family activities) through May 23. For a complete schedule, visit www.wdchumanities.org or call 202-387-8391.

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