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Write Stuff: Sedaris At The Bushnell, CT Book Awards

Special to The Courant

David Sedaris, whose witty and poignant essay collections and memoirs have made him a bestselling author, will speak Saturday, Oct. 14, at 8 p.m. at The Bushnell, 166 Capitol Ave., Hartford. Sedaris' latest is a collection of his diaries, entitled "Theft By Finding Diaries" (1977-2002).

Tickets are $39.75 to $59.75: bushnell.org.

Connecticut Book Awards

Finalists have been named for the 2017 Connecticut Book Awards, and winners will be announced Oct. 22, at an event from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Mark Twain & Museum, 351 Farmington Ave., Hartford.

The awards, last made in 2011, have been reinstated by the Connecticut Center for the Book at Connecticut Humanities. They will honor books published in 2016 in four categories by authors or illustrators with state ties. Best-selling Connecticut author Beatriz Williams will give the keynote address, and she and finalists and winners will sign books. The finalists are:

Fiction: "Back Lash" by Chris Knopf; "I'll Take You There" by Wally Lamb; "Shadows of Paris" by Eric D. Lehman; "Cajun Waltz" by Robert H. Patton and "Beneath a Shooting Star" by Susan Harrison Rashid.

Non-Fiction: "Rare Light" by Anne Dawson; "Never Look an American in the Eye" by Okey Ndibe; and "The Lost White Tribe" by Michael Robinson.

Poetry: "The Banquet" by Gray Jacobik; "Barrel Children" by Rayon Lennon; "The Meeting House" by Marilyn Nelson; and "Fugitives" by Danielle Pieratti.

Young Readers: "All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook" by Leslie Connor; "The Weight of Zero" by Karen Fortunati; "Ada's Violin" by Susan Hood; "The Unexpected Everything" by Morgan Matson; and "Good Night, Bat!  Good Morning, Squirrel!" by Paul Meisel.

Tickets are $30 and are available through noon on Oct. 19: ctcenterforthebook.org.

Book/Mark Events

The Mark Twain House & Museum, 351 Farmington Ave, Hartford, will present two Book/Mark author talks. Tickets are $5 for each: marktwainhouse.org.

On Tuesday, Oct. 10, at 7 p.m., Melissa Scholes Young, author of "Flood," a novel set in Twain's boyhood hometown, will speak. Scholes grew up in Hannibal, Mo., and teaches at American University in Washington, D.C.

On Thursday, Oct. 12, at 7 p.m., Jenny Allen, author of "Would Everybody Please Stop? Reflections on Life and Other Bad Ideas," will speak. A frequent contributor to major magazines, she also is a playwright, journalist, essayist, actress, monologist and cancer survivor, known for her one-woman show, "I Got Sick Then I Got Better."

Celebrity Author Luncheon

East Lyme Auxiliary of Child and Family Agency and Bank Square Books of Mystic will present the fourth annual Celebrity Author Luncheon on Saturday, Oct. 14, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., at East Lyme Community Center, 41 Society Road, Niantic. All profits will support Agency programs.

Ann Hood, bestselling author of more than 14 novels, three memoirs, a story collection, a series for middle readers and one young adult novel, will speak, along with her husband, Michael Ruhlman, who has written non-fiction books with various chefs.

Tickets, which include a copy of Hood's novel, "The Book that Matters Most," are $35 in advance and $40 at the door. Information and reservations: 860-443-2896.

Authors At R. J. Julia

Books about rescue dogs, Greek myths and World War I will be discussed at free events at R.J. Julia Booksellers, 768 Boston Post Road, Madison. Reservations are required: 203-245-3959 or rjjulia.com.

On Sunday, Oct. 8, at 2 p.m., journalist Peter Zheutlin will discuss "Rescued: What Second-Chance Dogs Teach Us about Living with Purpose, Loving with Abandon, and Finding Joy in the Little Things," a sequel to his bestseller, "Rescue Road."

On Wednesday, Oct. 11, at 7 p.m., authors Heather Webb and Hazel Gaynor will talk about their first co-written novel, "Last Christmas in Paris," told in letters sent during World War I.

On Thursday, Oct. 12, at 7 p.m., Emily Katz Anhalt, who teaches classical languages and literature at Sarah Lawrence College, will discuss her book, 'Enraged: Why Violent Times Need Ancient Greek Myths." Anhalt writes that Greek myths opposing violent rage and promoting empathy and restraint offer guidance for creating civil societies today.

At Wesleyan R.J. Julia Bookstore, 413 Main St., Middletown, on Tuesday, Oct. 10, at 5 p.m., Anthony Horowitz will discuss his new Alex Ryder thriller, "Never Say Die," and at 7 p.m., country singer Dar Williams will discuss "What I Found in a Thousand Towns," her account of the fall and rise of American small towns. On Friday, Oct. 13, at 7 p.m., Jenny Fran Davis, a 2017 Wesleyan University graduate, will talk about her debut novel, a comic romance called "Everything Must Go." 860-685-3939.

Historical Fiction

A free Winning Authors panel discussion will be held Thursday, Oct. 12, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Mohegan Sun Cabaret Theatre,1 Mohegan Sun Blvd., Uncasville.

Authors Pam Jenoff, Jessica Shattuck, Hazel Gaynor, Heather Webb and Fiona Davis will speak, moderated by Robin Homonoff, followed by a book signing in The Shops concourse.

Registration, as well as information on this and other Bank Square Books events: 860-536-3795 or banksquarebks@msn.com.

Hickory Stick Bookshop

Alan Shayne, a former president of Warner Brothers Television, actor and producer, will sign copies of his novel, "Finding Sylvia." at The Hickory Stick Bookshop, 2 Green Hill Road, Washington Depot, on Saturday, Oct. 14, at 3 p.m. It is about a movie producer who searches obsessively for a titled British woman who has mysteriously disappeared. 860-868-0525 or hickorystickbookshop.com.

Strange And Obscure

Bestselling author Stephen Spignesi will give a free illustrated talk on Thursday, Oct. 12, at 6:30 p.m., at Hagaman Memorial Library, 227 Main St., East Haven, about his book, "Dr. Bizarro's Eclectic Collection of Strange and Obscure Facts." Spignesi writes about popular culture and works by Stephen King. Information and registration: 203-468-3890.

Evidence of Flossing

A party on Saturday, Oct. 14, from 3 to 6 p.m. and a Sunday Salon artist/author talk on Oct. 15 from noon to 2 p.m. at Martha Link Walsh Gallery, 188 N. Main St., Branford, both free, will launch Jennifer Payne's book, "Evidence of Flossing: What We Leave Behind," poems about the natural world and the possibility of divine connection, illustrated with original and vintage photos. Payne is a graphic designer, artist and poet. 203-483-5353, 3chairspublishing@gmail.com or randomactsofwriting.net.

Riverwood Poetry Series

On Thursday, Oct. 12, at 7 p.m., the Riverwood Poetry Series will present a reading at The Universalist Church of West Hartford, 433 Fern St., West Hartford, by poet Margaret Gibson, along with an open mike. facebook.com/riverwoodpoetry.

Mystery Discussions

Carole Shmurak, of Farmington, who writes the Susan Lombardi mystery novels, will lead a free discussion at Simsbury Public Library, 725 Hopmeadow St., on Monday, Oct. 9, at noon, for the Simsbury Mystery Group's series, The Mysterious West, Part 2, on "Open Season" by C.J. Box. Information: 860-658-7663.

On Tuesday, Oct. 10, at 3 p.m., Shmurak will lead a discussion at Southington Public Library, 255 Main St., for the Southington Mystery Group: "And the Award Goes To . . . " on "The Lincoln Lawyer" by Michael Connelly. 860-628-0947.

"Surviving Remnant"

Hanna Perlstein Marcus, daughter of a Holocaust survivor, will give a free talk about her second memoir, "Surviving Remnant" (Buttonhole, $16), on Wednesday, Oct. 11, at 6 p.m., at Saxton B. Little Free Library, 319 Route 87, Columbia. The sequel to Marcus's award-winning memoir, "Sidonia's Thread," is about growing up with World War II refugees in Springfield, Mass. 860-228-0350.

Indie Author Day

A free panel discussion by local authors will mark Indie Author Day at Manchester Public Library, 586 Main St., Manchester, on Saturday, Oct. 14, at 2 p.m.

Discussing how they get inspired, writing process, getting published and marketing will be Dan Foley, John Valeri, Stacey Longo Harris, BL Daniels, Matthew M. Bartlett, Liz Delton, and Shawn Flynn. 860-647-5235.

Praying Toward Acceptance

The first Sister Mary Ellen Murphy Faculty Scholarship Award Lecture will be held Wednesday, Oct. 11, at 4:30 p.m., in Bruyette Athenaeum at the University of Saint Joseph, 678 Asylum Ave, West Hartford.

Dennis Barone, professor of English and American Studies, will speak about "Praying Toward Acceptance: Aspects of African, Anglo, and Italian American Cooperation." Barone will describe the interplay of the Hartford Italian Baptist Church and Shiloh Baptist Church, an African-American congregation, exploring the relevance of events in 1917 to immigration issues today. mkalis@usj.edu or 860-231-5229.

Together We Rise

On Sunday, Oct. 8, from 2 to 4 p.m., Together We Rise: Building Bridges for Justice will host a free read-in of Poetry by and About Children from War Torn Countries, at Two Wrasslin' Cats Coffee House, 374 Town St., East Haddam. Participants may read from provided poems or bring their own. 860-873-1472 or togetherwerisect.com.

Central Authors

Central Authors, a free series of talks about books by CCSU faculty, staff members or alumni, continues its 15th season on Wednesday, Oct. 11, at 12:15 p.m., in the Student Center Bookstore, 1615 Stanley St., New Britain.

Chip McCabe, a CCSU alumnus, will discuss his books, "100 Things to Do in Hartford Before You Die" and "666 Days of Metal." 860-832-2759 or gigliotti@ccsu.edu.

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