Fall Arts Preview - Books & amp;amp; Lectures

by Suzanne Schriener & r & AUNTIE'S & r & As always, Auntie's schedule is crammed with visits from around the region and beyond. The featured speaker this month (on Sept. 26) is Michael Gurian, who claims that boys account for 90 percent of disruptive behavior in classrooms. In The Minds of Boys, the local therapist explains why boys are falling behind in school and in life.

Two poets, Nadine Chapman and Lynn Martin Reading, will read from published works on Sept. 30. Jim Diers will share wisdom on Oct. 4 from Neighbor Power: Building Community the Seattle Way, based on his 14 years as the first director of Seattle's Department of Neighborhoods. Sarah Conover and Tracy Springberry are the editors of At Work in Life's Garden: Essays on Growing the Soul Through Parenting. Local contributors will be on hand Oct. 6 to introduce this heart- and mind-provoking collection of essays by Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Buddhists and writers with no religious or spiritual affiliation, published by Eastern Washington University Press.

On Oct. 12 at 7 pm, you can hear Spokane writer Jess Walter, author of Citizen Vince, hold forth on the year's best new titles for book groups. On Oct. 13, we're having a heat wave: Cheney author John Soennichsen will discuss Live From Death Valley, which explores one of the United State's most forbidding destinations.

Calling all mystery lovers! On Oct. 14, two writers from the Emerald City show off their cloak-and-dagger stuff. Employee of the Year is Milt Ghivizzani's debut, featuring attorney Joe Bari. Ask the Dead by Joyce Yarrow introduces Jo Epstein, a detective who performs slam poetry at night and is now making a fresh start in New York after a run of bad luck in L.A.

Mary Cronk Farrell, author of Celebrating Faith: Year-Round Activities for Catholic Families, leads a Parents' Workshop on Oct. 18 with easy activities and rituals to nurture family spirituality. The program covers Halloween, Veteran's Day and Thanksgiving, as well as ways to enrich and nourish faith in the ordinary days of the season. All faiths welcome.

Auntie's takes its turn hosting a discussion of The Girl in Hyacinth Blue on Oct. 19 at 7 pm. Author Susan Vreeland will be on hand as part of the 2005 Spokane Is Reading program.

While serving as Washington State University's registrar, James Quann interviewed and recorded stories of alums who fought in World War II, Korea, Vietnam and the first Gulf War. Those tales are told in his new book, WSU Military Veterans: Heroes and Legends, which he will discuss on Oct. 21.

Whitworth professor and ordained Presbyterian minister Jim Edwards will read from Is Jesus the Only Savior? on Oct. 25. His book is intended both for skeptics who think the Christian faith is not historically accurate, and also for Christians who are unsettled by popular books like those of Elaine Pagels and Robert Funk and wonder about the church's response.

Seattle writers Allen Wyler and Robert Booth come to Auntie's on Oct. 27. In Deadly Errors, a comatose man is given a fatal dose of insulin in the ER -- even though he isn't diabetic. An ulcer patient dies of hemolytic shock after receiving a transfusion -- of the wrong blood type. But when Dr. Tyler Matthews voices concerns about the hospital's new electronic medical records system, he is stonewalled and threatened by upper management. The Perfect Pafko by journalist Robert Booth, also from Seattle, is a novel featuring Brady Greer, an obsessed collector of baseball cards who is stunned by his father's death and his wife's betrayal.

Award-winning Spokane writer Jack Nisbet presents his latest book, The Mapmaker's Eye: David Thompson on the Columbia Plateau. Tied in with the major show at the MAC, the author of Sources of the River places David Thompson's explorations into the larger contexts of the European Enlightenment, the British fur trade economy and American expansion on Nov. 3.

In Blackbelly, Oregon sheep rancher Heather Sharfeddin cuts the Western from a different cloth altogether. Chas McPherson, the ailing pastor of a small Idaho town, has always used his ability to ferret out the town's sins to maintain an advantage over people. Now a Muslim family's house has been burned and Chas' hard drinking son, who raises Blackbelly sheep, is the main suspect. Sharfeddin reads on Nov. 4.

All events at 7:30 pm unless otherwise stated.

BOOKPEOPLE & r & On Oct. 15 at 10 am, Karen Fisher reads from her new book A Sudden Country at Moscow's little literary outpost. On Oct. 16 at 10 am, Dan Price, author of The Moonlight Chronicles, reads from Radical Simplicity: Creating an Authentic Life. On Nov. 5 at noon, John Garland reads from God of Creation, God of Love, which offers a take on Christianity from one who is both believer and scientist.

Sustainability Symposia & r & A collaboration among local colleges -- including SFCC, Whitworth, Gonzaga and EWU -- has noted social critic James Howard Kunstler coming to Spokane for a series of events on Oct. 12-13. But the symposia run longer than that, with events starting Oct. 5 (with the movie End of Suburbia at SFCC at 11:30 am) and ending Nov. 16 (another movie, also at SFCC at 11:30 am, Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price). Kunstler has gained notoriety for his biting critiques of suburban sprawl and municipal abandonment in The Geography of Nowhere. Now he's got the world's big untenable situation in his sights: dependence on foreign oil, or just dependence on oil in general. The book is The Long Emergency, and while filled with cogent recommendations, it's a downer.

Since doing nothing isn't going to fix anything, people who want to do something about it can hear him in person on Oct. 12 at the SFCC music auditorium at 11:30 am, then at 7 pm at Whitworth' Robinson Teaching Theater. On Oct. 13, he'll lead a panel discussion at SFCC's SUB. Then at 7 pm that night, he'll be at the Globe Room at Gonzaga University's Cataldo Hall for another lecture related to their "The Other Side of War" lecture series. On Oct. 11, the Symposia include an outdoor farmers' market and sustainability fair on the south lawn of the SFCC Library, starting at 11:30 am. If you want to lead a simpler life, be there.

SPOKANE PUBLIC LIBRARY & r & As the leaves turn and the temperatures cool, and you put away the camping gear and head indoors, your thoughts may turn to more cerebral diversions. In addition to the many events for Spokane Is Reading, the library is dishing up several other choices if you want to get your teeth into some serious literature. Let's Talk About It: Jewish Literature at the South Hill branch explores faith with a different title each month, all with the common theme of estrangement and homecoming.

Mr. Sammler's Planet, by Saul Bellow, is a political novel in the broadest sense: Written in the wake of the undergraduate takeover of Columbia University and the Apollo moon landing, the novel reflects Bellow's controversial attitude towards the '60s generation. As Arthur Sammler, a Holocaust survivor, reflects on the events around him, often citing the great European thinkers, the reader senses Bellow asking whether these ideas -- indeed any ideas -- can still matter. Discussion is Oct. 11 at 6:30 pm.

Out of Egypt by Andr & eacute; Aciman is a memoir of a Jewish family from cosmopolitan Alexandria, Egypt. The portraits of family members draw readers in -- from Aunt Flora, a refugee from Germany, who maintains a rather pessimistic philosophy about life, to Uncle Villy, who led a colorful life as a British spy, Italian fascist and soldier. Discussion is Nov. 8 at 6:30 pm.

In The Centaur in the Garden by Moacyr Scliar, the narrator proclaims, "I am a centaur, a mythological creature, but I am also Guedali Tartakovsky." Born half-human and half-horse to immigrants from Russia who staked out a new life in Brazil, the boy understandably struggles with his identity. Much of the book's deadpan comedy arises from the intersection of the mythical with this real Jewish community. Discussion is Dec. 6 at 6:30 pm.

EASTERN WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY & r & EWU's Eastern Dialogues Speaker Series brings Coach Ken Carter, the man behind the film Coach Carter starring Samuel L. Jackson, to speak about the movie and his life on Oct. 12 at 7 pm in EWU's Showalter Auditorium.

On Nov. 9 at 7 pm in the Pence Union Building, tobacco industry whistleblower Victor DeNoble tells his story. In the 1980s, DeNoble was recruited to develop a safer cigarette for the Philip Morris tobacco company. He succeeded in developing a nicotine substitute that was free of the negative effects that nicotine has on the heart. Fearing that his research on the effects of nicotine on the brain would support the claims that nicotine was addictive, the tobacco company seized his laboratory and DeNoble was fired. Silenced by a secrecy agreement, his story remained uncovered for more than a decade, until 1994, when Congress broke his confidentiality agreement with Philip Morris.

GONZAGA UNIVERSITY & r & The Catholicism for a New Millennium lecture series launches its fourth season on Sept. 23 at St. Al's Church with Ronald Rollheiser on "Forgotten Among the Lilies: Learning To Love Beyond Our Fears." Julie Hanlan Rubio of St. Louis University talks about "A Christian Theology of Marriage and Family" on Oct. 20 and the Barbieri Courtroom at the School of Law. On Nov. 17, Thomas Shannon of Worcester Polytechnic Institute discusses "Cloning & amp; Stem Cells: Reflections of a Catholic Theologian," also in the Barbieri Courtroom.

Gonzaga is also hosting "The Other Side of War" series this fall. Jonathan Isacoff, assistant professor of political science at GU, presents "Through the Looking Glass of Terror: A View of America's War on Terror from the Outside In" on Sept. 28 at noon in the Jundt Art Center Auditorium. Panelists Eileen Bell-Garrison, Gonzaga's dean of library services; psychology professor Patrick Mulick; Gonzaga law professor Sheri Engelken; and law professor James Vache will lead a discussion of "America's War on Terror: Effects on the Home Front" on Oct. 12 at noon in Jundt Auditorium. And Professor Thomas Shannon of Worcester Polytechnic discusses "Recent Catholic Thoughts on War and Peace" in the Foley Center Teleconference Room on Nov. 17 at noon.

THE MET & r & One big event this fall is NPR's Terry Gross, who'll speak at the Met this week (for a full story, see page 20). Later, it's Green Beret, Vietnam medic and environmental advocate Doug Peacock reads from his new memoir, Walking It Off: A Veteran's Chronicle of War and Wilderness, for Get Lit!'s fall fund-raiser. Peacock tells stories of wars, epic personalities, grizzly bears and wilderness adventures. Once mythologized by Edward Abbey as George Washington Hayduke in the environmental classic The Monkey Wrench Gang, Peacock has since been celebrated for his writing on wilderness, notably his book Grizzly Years. You can also get your tickets for Get Lit!, the April literary arts festival, at the reading on Nov. 10 at 7 pm.

SPOKANE COMMUNITY COLLEGE & r & The President's Speaker Series at Spokane Community College is hosting Georgetown University scholar John Esposito, professor of Islamic studies and founding director of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at the Walsh School of Foreign Service. On Nov. 17 at 7 pm in the Lair Student Auditorium, Esposito will discuss the issues that make understanding the politics and culture of the Islamic world an imperative for America.

WSU-PULLMAN & r & The WSU Friel Lecture Series hosts Elizabeth Brown, director of exhibitions in the Henry Art Gallery in Seattle on Sept. 26 at 7 pm in the Fine Arts Auditorium. She'll give the keynote lecture for the Roy Lichtenstein show running there this fall.

The WSU Philosophy Department brings Linda Martin Alcoff of Syracuse University to campus to give the 44th annual Potter Memorial Lecture, on "The Critique of Identity Politics" on Sept. 29 at 7:30 pm.

Stanford Environmental biologist Harold A. Mooney gives the 2005 Lane Family Lecture in Environmental Science, "Taking Stock of Nature's Assets," on Oct. 26 at 7:30 pm in Todd Auditorium.

The Department of English Visiting Writer Lecture Series hosts Valerie Miner of the University of Minnesota on Nov. 10 at 7:30 pm in the Museum of Art Gallery. Miner has traveled extensively and written about feminist issues and her own Scottish heritage in The Low Road: A Scottish Family Memoir.

Whitworth College & r & Geneticist Kyle Orwig discusses "What's Really at Stake in the Stem-Cell Research Debate?" on Sept. 15 at 7 pm. And poet Li-Young Lee reads on Nov. 4 at 8 pm. Both events are at the Robinson Teaching Theater.