Bookshelf Roundup

The writing about what you know edition

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Some people write books that are designed to transport readers out of their everyday existence and into fantastical worlds. Other scribes, however, draw upon their own experiences to share larger lessons about the world. In the next week, three authors will bring attention to their stories in ways that may change your life.

He may be 77 years old, but author, scientist and environmental activist David Suzuki shows no signs of slowing down. If anything, Suzuki’s age seems to be spurring him forward in his fight against climate change. Since he co-founded the David Suzuki Foundation in 1990, he’s been trying to “find ways for society to live in balance with the natural world that sustains us.” Clean oceans, clean energy, sustainability and the aforementioned climate change are the foundation’s priorities, and many of the 52 books Suzuki’s written—such as Time to Change, It’s a Matter of Survival, The Sacred Balance, and David Suzuki’s Green Guide—focus on ways humans can adapt their behaviors to help Mama Earth survive. When the visionary comes to Western Washington University May 6 as part of the school’s annual Japan Week, he’ll present a lecture dubbed “Time is Running Out: Ecology or Economics.” The community at large is invited to the free event, and the hope is that you’ll listen closely and take what Suzuki has to say to heart. When: 12pm Mon., May 6. Where: Performing Arts Center Concert Hall, WWU. Cost: Free. Info: http://www.wwu.edu

Rebecca Lerner doesn’t have as many years, or books, under her belt as Suzuki does, but the messages she’s hoping to send by sharing her memoir, Dandelion Hunter: Foraging the Urban Wilderness, is also largely an environmental one. In the tome, the Oregon-based author shares tales about the many ways she’s discovered to use an array of wild plants “hiding in plain sight.” In addition to focusing on ways to utilize them for food and medicine, Lerner also delves into anthropology, urban ecology and sustainability in the timely book, which she’ll reference when she visits later this week. When: 7pm Tues., May 7. Where: Village Books, 1200 11th St. Cost: Free. Info: http://www.villagebooks.com

When she left the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp at the age of 13, it’s likely Noemi Ban was more focused on survival than she was with using her story to better the world. But, as readers will soon discover when reading her autobiography, Sharing is Healing: A Holocaust Survivor’s Story, Ban—who lost most of her family to the horrors of the death camp—learned to take the tragedy and use it as a tool for education. If you have questions that arise after reading the book or hearing the Whatcom County resident speak, ask them now, as the number of survivors from the holocaust is rapidly dwindling, and the ones who want to talk about their experiences are rare. Ban will be available for a Q & A following her May 9 presentation, so don’t miss the opportunity to learn from history. When: 6pm Thurs., May 9. Where: Western Washington University Library. Cost: Free, but reservations are required. Info: http://www.wce.wwu.edu

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More Words...
Girls and Sex
Tackling a touchy subject

By giving her latest book a flashy pink cover and provocative title, it’s clear that Peggy Orenstein is no shrinking violet. 

In Girls and Sex: Navigating the Complicated New Landscape, Orenstein is not afraid to tackle touchy subjects, like she did with her 2011 bestseller, Cinderella…

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Nature of Writing
Readings of the region

Village Books teams up with the North Cascades Institute every spring and fall to offer the “Nature of Writing” speaker series at the Readings Gallery in the storied Fairhaven bookstore. With a focus on nature writing, science and the natural and cultural history of our region, the free…

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Cat's Pajamas
A pint-sized protagonist

There’s something extremely charming about a miserable, sassy almost-10-year-old bent on living her dream to become a jazz chanteuse. 

In Marie-Helene Bertino’s debut novel, 2 a.m. at the Cat’s Pajamas, Madeleine Altimari is no average kid. She’s a potty-mouthed chain smoker, dodging…

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Handling the truth


The Music Man

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

Family Game Night

7:30pm|DUG Theater

Lynden Book Sale

10:00am|Lynden Library

Komo Kulshan Ski and Snowboard Swap

4:00pm|Bloedel Donovan Gymnasium

Gore and Lore Tours

6:00pm|Historic Fairhaven and downtown Bellingham

Arsenic and Old Lace

7:00pm|Ferndale High School

Skagit Community Band

7:30pm|Maple Hall and Brodniak Hal

Top of the food chain


12 Minutes Max Fall Showcase

7:30pm|Firehouse Performing Arts Center


8:00pm|Old Main Theater


8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Phenomenal Woman Cabaret

8:00pm|Cirque Lab

Pancake Breakfast

8:00am|American Legion Hall

Anacortes Farmers Market

9:00am|Depot Arts Center

Make It & Take It

9:00am|Garden Spot Nursery

Twin Sisters Farmers Market

9:00am|Nugent's Corner

Cherry Point Forum

9:00am|Bellingham Technical College

Work Party

9:00am|Squalicum Creek

Scottish Highland Reel Competition

9:00am|Syre Center

Make a Difference Day

9:00am|Whatcom County

Fall Family Fun

10:00am|Glen Echo Garden

98221 Artists Studio Tour

10:00am|Anacortes and Guemes Island

Correspondence Club

10:00am|Mindport Exhibits

Blaine Gardeners Market

10:00am|Peace Portal Drive

Bellingham Comicon

10:00am|Ferndale Event Center

Bellingham Farmers Market

10:00am|Depot Market Square

Harvest Happens

10:00am|Bellewood Acres

Community Meal

10:00am|United Church of Ferndale

Celebrating Vicky Marshall

10:00am|Bellingham Public Library

Holiday Gifts from the Kitchen

11:00am|Community Food Co-op

Cornhole Tournament

2:00pm|Boys & Girls Club of Whatcom County

Writing the Living Memoir

2:00pm|Ferndale Library


4:00pm|Bellingham Sportsplex

Wild & Scenic Film Festival

6:30pm|Lincoln Theatre

Warfel Award Ceremony

7:00pm|Mount Baker Theatre

Contra Dance

7:00pm|Fairhaven Library

Skagit Symphony Gala Concert

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Whose Live Anyway?

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center

Just another hardcore troubadour


MBT Once Northwood Steak and Crab
Handling the truth


Lynden Book Sale

10:00am|Lynden Library

Skagit Community Band

7:30pm|Maple Hall and Brodniak Hal

98221 Artists Studio Tour

10:00am|Anacortes and Guemes Island

Harvest Happens

10:00am|Bellewood Acres

Rabbit Ride

8:00am|Fairhaven Bicycle

The Fungus Among Us

10:00am|North Lake Whatcom Park

Lynden Book Club

12:30pm|Lynden Library

Sunday Market

1:00pm|Alger Community Hall

Praise the Salmon

1:00pm|Fairhaven Village Green

Living Proof

4:00pm|Village Books

Benefit Variety Show

6:00pm|BAAY Theatre

Greg Proops

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Andrew Subin Swinomish 2016
Handling the truth


Word Sprints

6:00pm|Bellingham Public Library

October Chores in the Garden

6:30pm|Skagit Valley Food Co-op

Crossing Zion

7:00pm|Deming Library


8:00pm|Bellingham Public Library


9:30pm|Green Frog

see our complete calendar »

MBT Ben Folds Village Books Northwood Steak and Crab Artifacts Wine Bar Lydia Place Cascadia Weekly Subscribe Ad 1 Swinomish 2016 Bellingham Farmer’s Market MBT Ben Folds Everybody’s Store Andrew Subin