#BookBingoNW2018: A SAL author


There is no shortage of ideas for the Book Bingo challenge to read a Seattle Arts & Lectures (SAL) author. SAL has been bringing writers to Seattle for three decades (here is the complete list), so there are literally hundreds of options. In the spirit of being current with this year’s literary happenings around town, let’s take a look at some of the authors coming for the 2018/2019 season. You’ll find many ideas for book bingo squares other than “SAL author” with this list:

Jericho Brown: “To read Jericho Brown’s poems is to encounter devastating genius,” said Claudia Rankine, and we agree. Try Brown’s The New Testament and Please. You can also find Brown’s work in The Queer South: LGBTQ Writers on the American South and The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race.

Doris Kearns Goodwin: The historian and author’s newest book is Leadership in Turbulent Times (forthcoming). While you wait, try Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream or The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism, or, for something completely different, Wait Till Next Year, her memoir about growing up and loving the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Kimiko Hahn:  You’re in for a treat if you haven’t yet read Hahn’s poetry, which Bloomsbury Review called “a welcome voice of experimentation and passion.” Select from Brain Fever, Toxic Flora, and The Narrow Road to the Interior.

Tayari Jones: Look for Jones’s most recent novel, An American Marriage, at the Peak Picks display at your neighborhood branch this summer. But don’t miss out on her earlier work, such as Silver Sparrow which begins with the line, “My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist.” You need to know the rest of the story.

Ilya Kaminsky: Start with Dancing in Odessa, the debut poetry collection by this Russian immigrant (who wrote these poems in English).

Barbara Kingsolver: If you’re a Kingsolver fan, you’ll want to get on the hold list for her new novel, Unsheltered. If you’re a lover of her fiction, try her nonfiction for a change of pace, going back to her 1995 essay collection High Tide in Tucson.

Jill Lepore: Lots to choose with this American historian and author. While you wait for her newest, These Truths: A History of the United States, spend some time with The Secret History of Wonder Woman.

Valeria Luiselli: Luiselli’s Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions is structured around the 40 questions she translates and asks undocumented Latin American children facing deportation. Also not to miss: The Story of My Teeth, a novel translated from Spanish.

Imbolo Mbue: Beholder the Dreamers is a lovely portrait of a Cameroonian immigrant family in New York City on the eve of the Great Recession. The New York Times called it a “big-hearted novel.”

Danez Smith: Smith’s Don’t Call Us Dead was a finalist for the National Book Award for Poetry. The New Yorker says that Smith’s “poems are enriched to the point of volatility, but they pay out, often, in sudden joy.”

Zadie Smith: Choose essays or fiction from Smith. Her most recent book is Feel Free, with essays that explore politics, libraries (!), and global warming. If you’re feeling like reading fiction, try On Beauty.

Alice Walker: There are so many ways to explore Walker’s work. If you know her best for The Color Purple, perhaps try her nonfiction (The Cushion in the Road: Meditation and Wandering as the Whole World Awakens to Being in Harm’s Way or In Search of Our Mother’s Gardens: Womanist Prose) or short stories (In Love & Trouble).

For more ideas for books to meet your Summer Book Bingo challenge, follow our Shelf Talk #BookBingoNW2018 series or check the hashtag #BookBingoNW2018 on social media. Need a Book Bingo card? Print one out here or pick one up at your Library. Book bingo is presented in partnership with Seattle Arts & Lectures.

~ Posted by Linda J.

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