Five years ago Evanston poet Joshua Corey began to experience an unusual sensation. After publishing three celebrated poetry collections, the Lake Forest College professor suddenly felt the “uncharacteristic itch to write some prose.” Readers everywhere should be thankful he scratched that itch because the result was Corey’s fantastic first novel Beautiful Soul: An American Elegy. Described as “an impressive postmodern noir debut,” Beautiful Soul “centers around Ruth, a bored and frustrated young mother in the Chicago suburbs haunted by the letters she receives from her own mother, who has been dead for several years.” On Thursday, October 2nd, you can hear Mr. Corey read from Beautiful Soul when he visits EPL’s 1st Floor Community Meeting Room at 7 p.m. along with local authors Patrick Creevy and Dennis Byrne. In anticipation of his visit, we recently spoke with him via email about the evolution of Beautiful Soul, poetry vs. prose, mother-daughter relationships, hardboiled detective novels, and his latest John Ashbery-approved poetry collection.
We are thrilled to introduce Evanston painters Clara Foreman and Deety Zbaraz as the next featured artists in our ongoing exhibition series Local Art @ EPL. Their show – titled Two Friends : Two Artists – is currently on display on the 2nd floor of EPL’s Main Library where you can catch it through September 30. Don’t miss it!
Harper Lee’s 1960 novel To Kill a Mockingbird won the top vote for most influential book written by women. A selection of 20 titles voted by the public was launched to find novels by women “that have most impacted, shaped or changed readers’ lives”. Liberty director Shami Chakrabarti described Ms. Lee’s novel as “the book that introduced many of us to our belief in human rights,” adding “with human rights under attack the world over, the enduring appeal of Harper Lee’s great tale gives hope that justice and equality might yet triumph over prejudice”. Other titles on the list include classics, science fiction, romance and children’s literature. Read the full article in The Guardian and check out the entire list here.
Former poet laureate of the U.S. Robert Hass won the $100,000 Wallace Stevens Award. The prize given for “outstanding and proven mastery in the art of poetry” was awarded by the Academy of American Poets on Tuesday. Mr. Hass won a National Book Award in 2007 and a Pulitzer Prize in 2008. He will be honored along with six other recipients at a ceremony on October 17. You can read two of his poems here and see more about the award and other winners in this NYT article.
1938’s Action Comics No. 1, featuring the first appearance of Superman, sold for $3.207,852 to an unnamed buyer. Darren Adams the owner of Pristine Comics in Federal Way, Washington posted it on eBay August 14. The original price for this comic in 1938 was 10 cents. It took just 48 bids to get from a starting price of 99-cents to it’s final sale. Mr. Adams told the Washington Post: “I actually held it for a few years–I was so excited about this book. And equally exciting to have a book of this condition is the fact that nobody knew it existed…till I made it known.” Read more here. Now don’t you wish you had saved your old comic books?
Opera fans are eagerly awaiting the gala opening night of this year’s 2014/2015 opera season at Chicago’s world renowned Lyric Opera. It’s Don Giovanni on September 27th. And, of course, here at EPL, we are setting up our Lyric materials display and organizing our popular lecture series that begins on Saturday, September 20th at 2pm at the Main Library.
But if you’ve always imagined you’d look fabulous as the flirty Rosalinde (Die Fledermaus) or want to dress up this Halloween as the lovestruck Nanki-Poo (The Mikado), now’s your chance to purchase a get-up at the Lyric’s costume sale on Saturday, September, 6th, 9am to 6pm at the Civic Opera House, 20 N. Wacker Drive at Madison Street. Prices will range from $1 to $200.
British actor and director Richard Attenborough died on Sunday at the age of 90. Although a familiar actor in Britain, it wasn’t until he was cast in the 1963 war film The Great Escape that he became established in Hollywood. He won Golden Globe Awards for best supporting actor in The Sand Pebbles in 1966 and again in 1967 for his role in Doctor Doolittle. He also acted in Indian director Satyajit Ray’s The Chess Players and in Steve Spielberg’s hit Jurassic Park. His later years were devoted to directing, including his 1982 epic Gandhi which was nominated for 11 Academy Awards and won eight. His earlier directing jobs include the 1969 satirical musical Oh! What a Lovely War; Young Winston in 1972; A Chorus Line in 1985, and Cry Freedom in 1987. Mr. Attenborough was made a Commander of the British Empire in 1967, was knighted in 1976, made a baron in 1993 and given a seat in the House of Lords. For more about this distinguished “giant of British cinema” see today’s NYT article. And check the EPL catalog for more of his films.