Tuesday, August 27
Mystery Book Club
Come join this group that has been meeting for over 20 years! New members always welcome; all you need is a love of mysteries and a burning desire to talk about them with a fun group of folks!
Selection this month: Shell Game by Sara Paretsky
Saturday, September 7
Meet the Author: Lori Erickson
Near the Exit: Travels with the Not-So-Grim Reaper
After her brother died unexpectedly and her mother moved into a dementia care facility, Lori Erickson felt called to a new quest: to face death head on, with the eye of a tourist and the heart of a pastor. Blending memoir, spirituality, and travel, Near the Exit takes readers from Egypt's Valley of the Kings and Mayan temples to tourist-destination graveyards. Erickson reflects on mortality - the ways we avoid it, the ways we cope with it, and the ways life is made more precious by accepting it - in places as far away as New Zealand and as close as the nursing home up the street. Through her personal journey and her travels, Erickson helps us to see that one of the most life-affirming things we can do is to invite death along for the ride.
Lori Erickson, an Episcopal deacon, is one of America's top travel writers specializing in spiritual journeys. She's the author of the 2017 memoir Holy Rover: Journeys in Search of Mystery, Miracles, and God, which was a finalist for the 2017 Travel Book of the Year INDIES Award from Foreword Reviews and the first place winner in the spiritual/religious category of the 2018 Hollywood Book Festival. Her articles has been published in publications that include National Geographic Traveler, Travel + Leisure, Los Angeles Times, Woman's Day, Better Homes & Garden, and Family Circle. She lives in Iowa City, Iowa, with her husband.
Tuesday, September 10
Beaverdale Books Book Club
Formerly the Hunter's Picks Book Club takes its inspiration from Paul's Book Club at Prairie Lights in Iowa City, which Hunter attended while in college. This book club will read primarily literary fiction. Hunter will still be making the monthly selections and leading the discussion. Come join this group for an evening of enlightenment!
Selection this month: Goodbye, Columbus by Philip Roth
Thursday, September 12
Beaverdale Book Browsers Book Club
Beaverdale Books' original book club is once again open to new members!
This book club was at capacity for a while, but as people come and go there are openings for new readers looking for a book club. The club started when the store opened in 2006 and has been going strong ever since. What began as a group of strangers has been a testament to the power of books to bring people together. Selections are eclectic and the discussion is always interesting. Food and wine are always part of the fun as well. Anyone is welcome!
Selection this month: Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
Saturday, September 14
Environmental Book Club
NOTE DATE CHANGE THIS MONTH DUE TO THE BEAVERDALE FALL FESTIVAL!
This book club was formed out of an interest in raising not just awareness, but interest and the "environmental IQ" of our local community. Group members represent a range of interests and knowledge about environmental issues, and have set out to create and maintain a place where ideas and information can be shared in civil and welcoming ways. The community is welcome to attend, listen and discuss.
Selection this month: Eating Tomorrow: Agribusiness, Family Farmers, and the Battle for the Future of Food, by Timothy A. Wise
Sunday, September 15
Meet the Author: Jeffrey W. Hanna
Hard Road to Redemption
Music, success, failure, forgiveness, romance, love and redemption all woven into this easy, enjoyable read. Based in Des Moines and central Iowa, the story is about a one-hit wonder named Johnny X. After his one hit, for the next 20+ years he tumbles into obscurity and irrelevance, finally crashing and burning. You'll love his connection to an unlikely musician and mentor, a homeless man named Spazmo, who opens up a new way for Johnny to make music and points the way to an unlikely and hard road to redemption. Local readers will recognize several real and fictitious settings.
Jeff Hanna has led an unpredictable, eclectic life. After a stint in the military he chose to really experience life. That led him to careers as an undercover narcotics detective, ordained pastor, homeless shelter manager, and risk manager for a church insurance company. He and his wife, Nancy, founded a faith-based nonprofit organization called Fish Factory, where they provided safe space for the homeless, addicted, broken, lost, confused and lonely, loving and serving anyone in need. Jeff has published two books, Safe and Secure: The Alban Guide to Protecting Your Congregation (1999), and Emmanuel, the Christmas Lamb (2016). He is currently working on a trilogy of faith-based fables. He lives in Altoona, where he serves as a volunteer police chaplain. In his spare time, he writes and produces a humorous Christian variety show called First Church Potluck Theater and Green Bean Casserole Band.
Friday and Saturday, September 20-21
BEAVERDALE FALL FEST
It's Fall Fest time once again and Beaverdale Books will be celebrating with events and specials. We'll be open until 8:00 both nights!
SIDEWALK SALE on Friday and Saturday - 50% off Selected Hardcover books!
On Friday night at 7:00, our annual Literary Trivia Contest will be held. A $5 entry fee will be matched by Beaverdale Books and donated to Everybody Wins Iowa, a reading/mentoring program. Match your literary wits against other avid readers. The questions are serious, but we play fast and loose and have a good time with it. Winner gets a gift certificate!
On Saturday from 2:00 - 4:00, take part in our Sidewalk Chalk Contestin the Kid Zone! Draw your favorite book character! Check in at the store for some chalk and a spot. You could win a gift certificate!
Also, all weekend long we will be giving away free Advance Reading Copies with each purchase. These are galley copies that are sent to us by publishers, and we can't read them all! All kinds of titles are available – you might just find the next bestseller!
Monday, September 23
Raccoon River Reading Series
Beaverdale Books is thrilled to announce a new series of events for writers. Beginning on September 23 (and every other month thereafter), we will be hosting the Raccoon River Reading Series. The series is being organized by local writer Suzanne Guess, who, after traveling to Omaha to participate in similar events, wondered why we didn't have something similar in Des Moines. An email inquiry led to a meeting, and the idea quickly resulted in a new literary experience at Beaverdale Books.
If you're a writer, you know there's a lot more to the profession than getting words on the page (although that's a big part of it), and that's what this reading series is all about: giving you the opportunity to gain exposure, test out your work on an audience, practice your public reading skills, and network.
This recurring event is open to all writers and all genres. There are a few guidelines, however:
1. Register at least 48 hours in advance of the reading. You'll receive a confirmation email that you're scheduled to read.
2. Cancel 24 hours in advance. No-shows are uncool and may affect future registrations.
3. Read for up to ten minutes and wow us with your words! If you're still reading at the ten-minute mark, hungry zombies are released to chase you away from the mic.
4. Any unclaimed slots on the agenda will be open mic.
You can register to read at www.suzanneguess.com/raccoon-river-reading-series
Hope to see you there!
Thursday, September 26
Poetry Reading: Matt Hart
Everything Breaking/for Goodand The Obliterations
The poems in Everything Breaking/For Good swerve through the world as they ache for something better, something that might be but isn...at least not yet, and maybe never. Matt Hart's newest collection asks can a creative life really make it alright? Does imagination make the world? Is paying attention to what's right in front of our faces the key to empathizing with a universe that isn’t? How do we find our feet with each other when everything seems to be breaking for good? How can we not?
The Obliterations began as translations (mostly of the works of Guillaume Apollinaire), but became via a variety of methods, something else entirely. These poems don’t have a speaker or speakers. They are speakers - that is, devices for amplifying sound.
Matt Hart is the author of nine books of poems, including most recently Everything Breaking/for Good (YesYes Books, 2019) and The Obliterations (Pickpocket Books, 2019). Additionally, his poems, reviews, and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in numerous print and online journals, including The Academy of American Poets online, Big Bell, Columbia Poetry Review, jubilat, Kenyon Review online, Mississippi Review, and POETRY, among others. His awards include a Pushcart Prize, a 2013 individual artist grant from The Shifting Foundation, and fellowships from both the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference and the Warren Wilson College MFA Program for Writers. A co-founder and the editor-in-chief of Forklift, Ohio: A Journal of Poetry, Cooking & Light Industrial Safety, he lives in Cincinnati where he teaches at the Art Academy of Cincinnati and plays in the band NEVERNEW: www.nevernew.net.
Sunday, September 29
Meet the Author: Joy Riggs
Crackerjack Bands and Hometown Boosters
Many today are familiar with the Broadway musical The Music Man, but few could name one prominent band director active in their own region during the early years of the twentieth century, when community bands were as important to mid-sized towns as professional sports teams are to large cities today. Among the most renowned in the Midwest in those days was G. Oliver Riggs, who was employed at one time or another by the cities of Crookson, Bemidji, Grand Forks, and St. Cloud, among others. He eventually developed a reputation as one of the most successful directors of youth bands in the United States. But after his death in 1946, few people outside of St. Cloud, Minnesota, remembered his name or his reputation for building highly disciplined ensembles that provided an extra spark to civic celebrations, while also instilling several generations of young performers with a love for music and a commitment to playing it well.
Six decades later, in Crackerjack Bands and Hometown Boosters, journalist Joy Riggs set out to learn more about the life and achievements of G. Oliver - her great-grandfather. Riggs follows the careers of G. Oliver, his talented wife Islea, and their children, through times of war, peace, economic hardship, and personal tragedy. She tracks down and interviews those who performed in G. Oliver's ensembles and scours the daily newspapers of many small towns for information regarding his movements, contracts, performances, and rivalries. In so doing, she opens a window onto an aspect of American culture that cannot be adequately conveyed by listening to one or two John Philip Sousa marches. Ultimately, this is a story about civic pride, community participation, and the power of music to transform lives and connect people across generations.
Joy Riggs grew up in Alexandria, Minnesota, and graduated from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1990 with a bachelor's degree in news-editorial journalism. She specializes in writing about history, travel, and parenting. Her award-winning columns, essays, and articles have appeared in numerous publications, including the Star Tribune, Minnesota Parent, Minnesota Monthly, and the Des Moines Register. She lives in Northfield, Minnesota, where she serves on the boards of the Vintage Band Festival and the Northfield Historical Society. For more of her writing, visit www. joyriggs.com.