Upcoming Events

Details for our upcoming events are below. You can find a line listing of other confirmed author appearances at the bottom of the page.

If you want to hear about events in your inbox, sign up for our email newsletter or the Boswell and Books blog. And, you can always pre-order or reserve a signed copy of your favorite author's new title if you can't make an event!   


Donald Baumgartner and Kurt Chandler, in conversation for With the Wind at His Back: The Charmed and Charitable Life of Donald Baumgartner
Monday, October 22, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Milwaukeean Donald Baumgartner is known as a man who takes a big bite out of life. He’ll chat with his biographer, Kurt Chandler, about his new biography and his life and times.

Baumgartner crossed the Atlantic in a 58-foot yacht through two gale-force storms. He’s set foot on all seven continents and accepted an award from President Ronald Reagan in the White House Rose Garden. He built his family business into a global leader and then made headlines in 2016 when he handed over the ownership of his Milwaukee manufacturing company to his employees.

As depicted by author Kurt Chandler, Donald Baumgartner has led a charmed life of adventure, success, and generosity, and he continues to give back to his community as one of his hometown's most charitable patrons of the arts. Impassioned, lionhearted, he works hard and lives large, endowed with an optimistic nature, sense of humor, and a measure of good luck.

Donald Baumgartner founded Paper Machinery Corporation in 1951 and now oversees this thriving, international company. He is highly active in Milwaukee-area civic and community organizations and was instrumental in bringing the Santiago Calatrava wing to life at the Milwaukee Art Museum. Kurt Chandler served as Milwaukee Magazine’s Editor-in-Chief from August 2013 - November 2015. Chandler has been published in a number of metro newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and Salon. He has authored, coauthored, or edited 12 books. He has been named Writer of the Year by the City & Regional Magazine Association, Journalist of the Year by the Milwaukee Press Club, and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.


Meghan O’Gieblyn, author of Interior States: Essays, in conversation with Jon M. Sweeney
Tuesday, October 23, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Madison-based critic and essayist O’Gieblyn chats at Boswell with Milwaukee-based author and scholar Jon M. Sweeney about her new collection of essays about faith, culture, and the Midwest.

O’Gieblyn, born into an evangelical family, attended the famed Moody Bible Institute in Chicago for a time before she had a crisis of belief, and she still lives in the Midwest, aka “Flyover Country.” She writes of her existential dizziness, and her rich sense of ambivalence and internal division inform the essays in this collection which ask, what does it mean to be a believing Christian and a Midwesterner in an increasingly secular America where the cultural capital is retreating to both coasts?

O’Gieblyn’s essay on Vice President Mike Pence was the cover story of Harper’s May 2018 issue. Of the collection Lorrie Moore says, “Meghan O’Gieblyn’s deep and searching essays are written with a precise sort of skepticism and a slight ache in the heart. A first-rate and riveting collection.”

Madison-based Meghan O’Gieblyn’s essays have appeared in Harper’s Magazine, The New Yorker, and Best American Essays 2017. She received a B.A. in English from Loyola and an MFA in Fiction from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Milwaukeean Jon M. Sweeney is an independent scholar and author of books of history, spirituality, biography, poetry, and fiction for young readers.


Wednesday, October 24, 6:30 PM, at American Geographical Society Library at UWM, 2311 E Hartford Ave

Philbrick, the National Book Award winning author of In the Heart of the Sea, chronicles the thrilling story of the fateful year that won the Revolutionary War during a special evening in the perfect setting for historic adventure. Please register for this event or upgrade to a book-with-ticket option, which includes a copy of In the Hurricane’s Eye, all taxes and fees, and signing line priority, at philbrickmke.bpt.me.

In the fall of 1780, after five frustrating years of war, Washington realized the only way to defeat the British Empire was with the help of the French navy. But coordinating his army’s movements with those of warships thousands of miles away was next to impossible. And then, on September 5, 1781, the impossible happened. The Battle of the Chesapeake, fought without a single American ship, made the victory of the Americans at Yorktown a virtual inevitability.

In a narrative that moves from Washington’s headquarters on the Hudson to Lafayette’s maneuvers across Tidewater Virginia, Philbrick details the year through to its triumphant conclusion. A riveting and wide-ranging story, full of dramatic, unexpected turns, In the Hurricane’s Eye reveals that the fate of the American Revolution depended, in the end, on Washington and the sea.

National Book Award winner Nathaniel Philbrick is the author of Mayflower, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, Valiant Ambition, winner of the George Washington Prize, and Bunker Hill, winner of the New England Book Award, among other books.


Wednesday, October 24, 7:30 PM, at UWM Arts Center Lecture Hall, Room #120, 2400 E Kenwood Blvd

UWM Peck School of the Arts Artist’s Now! guest lecture series, cosponsored by AIGA Wisconsin and Boswell, presents a rare opportunity to hear from graphic artist Emory Douglas, former Minister of Culture of the Black Panther Party. This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required and space is limited. Register at emory-douglas.eventbrite.com.

Black Panther: The Revolutionary Art of Emory Douglas is the reformatted publication of the first book to collect the provocative posters and groundbreaking graphics of the Black Panther Party. The Black Panther Party for Self Defense, formed in the aftermath of the assassination of Malcolm X in 1965, sounded a defiant cry for an end to the institutionalized subjugation of African Americans. The Black Panther newspaper was founded to articulate the party’s message, and artist Emory Douglas became the paper’s art director.

Douglas’s artistic talents and experience proved a powerful combination: his striking collages of photographs and his own drawings combined to create some of the era’s most iconic images. This landmark book brings together a remarkable lineup of party insiders who detail the crafting of the party’s visual identity.

Emory Douglas is a graphic artist who was Minister of Culture for the Black Panther Party from 1967 until its discontinuation in the early 1980s. His artwork was featured in most issues of The Black Panther newspaper.


Roxane Gay, author of Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body
Thursday, October 25, 7 pm, at UWM Union Wisconsin Room, 2200 E Kenwood

UWM’s Distinguished Lecture Series presents the award-winning author of Bad Feminist, Difficult Women, and An Untamed State. Gay also recently became the first black woman to write for Marvel with World of Wakanda, a comic series set in the Black Panther universe.

Tickets are available to the general public for $10 in advance, at uwm-roxanegay.eventbrite.com, and will be available for $12 at the door. Tickets are free for UWM students, $5 for non-UWM students in advance, $8 for non-UWM students at the door, and are available at the UWM Student Union Information Desk.

Courageous, humorous, and smart are just a few words used to describe the internationally acclaimed author and cultural critic. She works to critique modern culture through her humor and enthusiastic personality. NPR named Bad Feminist of its best books of the year. Gay is also an opinion writer for The New York Times and a founding editor of PANK literary magazine.

Roxane Gay is author of Bad Feminist, a New York Times bestseller, the novel An Untamed State, a finalist for the Dayton Peace Prize, and the story collection Ayiti. She has also written for Time, The Rumpus, and Salon, where she was a featured columnist, and her fiction has been selected for Best American Short Stories 2012 and Best American Mystery Stories 2014.


Christopher Sturdevant, author of Cold War Wisconsin
Tuesday, October 30, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Milwaukee author and Chairman of the Midwest Chapter of the Cold War Museum tells the tales of the Badger State’s role in the showdown between East and West.

For decades, Wisconsin’s nuclear missiles pointed to the skies from Waukesha’s back yard, awaiting Soviet bombers. Joseph Stalin's daughter sought refuge in the small town of Richland Center. With violence in Vietnam about to peak, a cargo ship from Kewaunee sparked a new international incident with North Korea. Manitowoc was ground zero for a Sputnik satellite crash, and four ordinary Madison youths landed on the FBI's most wanted list after the Sterling Hall Bombing.

Sturdevant recounts the stories of everyday Wisconsinites during the years that the Cold War gripped the world with fear of espionage and nuclear winter in this book, which preserves a fading piece of Wisconsin history.

Christopher Sturdevant is Chairman of the Midwest Chapter of the Cold War Museum, a children's librarian in Milwaukee, and a U.S. Air Force veteran. Sturdevant has represented Team USA in master's level track championships on three continents.


Thursday, November 1, 7:00 PM, at UWM Peck School of the Arts Recital Hall, 2400 E Kenwood Blvd

The Kennan and Vilas Distinguished Lecture series hosts Amitav Ghosh for a talk entitled Embattled Earth, sponsored by Institute of World Affairs, Vilas Trust, Department of English, UWM Letters & Sciences, and Boswell.

Ghosh traces the entangled history of commodities, conflict, and climate change in the Indian Ocean. Since Vasco da Gama’s voyage, the Indian Ocean has been the theatre of rivalries over commodities. For centuries the main players were Western colonial powers, but lately the countries of the Indian Ocean rim have become the principal drivers of anthropogenic climate change, an ongoing process that will have catastrophic consequences for the billions of people who live around the Indian Ocean.

This lecture explores the continuities between the resource conflicts of the past and the future by focusing on two transformative imperial wars: the Anglo-Dutch spice wars of the 17th century and the 1st Opium War of 1840-42. It also poses a question: are the imperatives of empire and military supremacy among the major drivers of climate change?

Amitav Ghosh is a novelist and essayist, author of The Calcutta Chromosome, the Ibis Trilogy, and the essay collection In an Antique Land. He has won the Prix Médicis étranger, an Arthur C. Clarke Award, and in 2017 he was awarded the inaugural Utah Award in the Environmental Humanities from the University of Utah.


A Murder and Mayhem Milwaukee Preview, featuring Mindy Mejia, author of Leave No Trace and Kate Moretti, author of In Her Bones
Thursday, November 1, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Boswell offers a preview event for Murder and Mayhem Milwaukee with two critically-acclaimed authors of thrilling new crime novels, Mindy Mejia, author of Everything You Want Me To Be, in conversation with with Kate Moretti, author of While You Were Gone.

Mejia’s latest thriller is set in the glacial lakes and untouched forests of the Minnesota Boundary Waters. Ten years ago a man and his son trekked into this wilderness and never returned, presumed dead. Ten years later, the son is discovered ransacking an outfitter store, violent and uncommunicative, refusing to answer questions about his father or the last ten years of his life. As a therapist is drawn closer to this enigmatic young man, she’ll risk everything to reunite him with his father who has disappeared from the known world.

Moretti’s latest is a novel that questions the nature of guilt, obsession, and familial ties that follows the daughter of a convicted serial killer who finds herself at the center of a murder investigation. Edie is a recovering alcoholic with a dead-end city job, an unhealthy codependent relationship with her brother, and a growing obsession with the families of her mother’s victims.

Mindy Mejia is author of The Dragon Keeper and Everything You Want Me to Be. She earned an MFA from Hamline University. Kate Moretti is author of Thought I Knew You, Binds That Tie, and While You Were Gone.


Austin Smith, author of Flyover Country, and Dora Malech, author of Stet
Friday, November 2, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

An evening of poetry from the Princeton University Press Series of Contemporary Poets, featuring University of Wisconsin graduate Smith and Malech, who teaches in The Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University.

Building on Smith’s reputation as an accessible and inventive poet with deep insights about rural America, Flyover Country draws profound connections between the Midwest and the wider world. Inspired by his childhood on a dairy farm in Illinois, tales of rural life lead the way in this collection focused on family, violence, and memories.

Malech’s latest is a collection of serious and playful poems that tap the inventive possibilities of the anagram and other constraining forms, combining lyric invention and wordplay. “Stet,” from the Latin for “let it stand,” is a proofreading term meaning to retain or return to a previous phrasing. Stet is a work of serious play that brings home the connections and intimacies of language.

Austin Smith grew up on a family dairy farm in northwestern Illinois. He is author of Almanac, and his work has appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, and Ploughshares. He teaches at Stanford University. Dora Malech is author of Say So and Shore Ordered Ocean. Her poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, and Best American Poetry. She is Assistant Professor in The Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University.


Saturday, November 3, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM, at Irish Cultural and Heritage Center, 2133 W. Wisconsin Avenue

Murder and Mayhem returns to Milwaukee in 2018! This year’s event features a whole day full of the excellent author panels and interviews you’ve come to expect from this mysteriously good event.

Tickets for the whole day cost $40, plus ticketing fees, available at murdermayhemmilwaukee.com.

This year, Murder and Mayhem features a criminally good lineup, including special guests Lou Berney, Edgar Award-winning author of The Long and Faraway Gone and Andrew Gross, bestselling collaborator of James Patterson, along with authors Ed Aymar, Susanna Calkins, Joe Clifford, Angel Colon, Libby Fischer Hellmann, Matthew FitzSimmons, Bryan Gruley, Jennifer Hillier, Chris Holm, Julie Hyzy, Owen Laukkanen, Elizabeth Little, Jess Lourey, Nadine Nettmann, Clare O’Donohue, Milwaukee’s own Nick Petrie, Lori Rader-Day, Tom Schreck, Alex Segura, Victoria Thompson, and Fred Van Lente.


A Cookbook Author Luncheon with Dorie Greenspan, author of Everyday Dorie: The Way I Cook
Saturday, November 3, 12:00 PM, at Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro, 3133 E Newberry Blvd

The team at Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro have partnered with Boswell to present an author luncheon featuring James Beard Award winning chef Dorie Greenspan, The New York Times Magazine “On Dessert” columnist. Tickets are $68 and include three courses with pairings and a copy of Everyday Dorie. To purchase tickets and for more information, visit bartolottas.com/lake-park-bistro/events/luncheon-dorie-greenspan.

Dorie Greenspan’s food is powerfully cookable, and her recipes are instant classics to the hundreds of thousands who follow her on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. But what makes a ‘Dorie recipe?’ Each one has a small surprise that makes it special, like mustard and walnuts in the cheese puffs. The dishes are practical, made with common ingredients from the supermarket, farmers’ market, or pantry. They are easygoing, providing swaps and substitutions. They invite mixing and matching. Many can be served as dinner, or as a side dish, hot, cold, or room temperature. And every single one is like a best friend in the kitchen, full of Dorie’s infectious love of cooking and her trademark hand-holding directions.

Dorie Greenspan is author of Dorie's Cookies, a 2017 James Beard Award-winner for Best Baking and Dessert book, Around My French Table, named Cookbook of the Year by the IACP, and Baking: From My Home to Yours, a James Beard Award winner.


It’s a Potato Party! With Laurie Keller, author of Potato Pants!, and Alan Silberberg, author of Meet the Latkes
Monday, November 5, 4:00 PM, at Boswell

We’re having a potato party and every spud’s invited! It’s an awesome afternoon with author-illustrators Laurie Keller and Alan Silberberg and their perfect pair of potato themed picture books, activities, and yes, potato-based snacks. Please register for this free event at potatomke.bpt.me.

A potato and his eggplant nemesis struggle to find the perfect pants in a hilarious, heartwarming tale of forgiveness by author-illustrator Laurie Keller. Potato is excited because Lance Vance’s Fancy Pants store is selling POTATO PANTS! Potato rushes over early, and just as he’s about to walk in, who does he see inside? Mean, pushy eggplant who was rude to him the other day. Can these vegetable rivals make peace in the name of fashion?

Alan Silberberg’s Latkes family is just like yours or mine. Except that they’re potato pancakes. And also, they are completely clueless. After they light the menorah and gobble the gelt, Grandpa Latke tells everyone the Hanukkah story, complete with mighty Mega Bees who use a giant dreidel to fight against the evil alien potatoes from Planet Chhh. It’s up to the Latke family dog to set the record straight. But he’ll have to get the rest of the Latkes to listen to him first!

Michigan-based Laurie Keller is author-illustrator of books one, two, and three of the Arnie the Doughnut series, Do Unto Otters, and We Are Growing!, the 2017 Theodor Seuss Geisel Winner. Alan Silberbergis an award-winning author, cartoonist, and children’s TV creator who has worked with Nickelodeon and Disney. He’s the author and illustrator of the middle grade novel Milo: Sticky Notes & Brain Freeze, which won the Sid Fleishman Humor Award.


Daniel Mason, author of Winter Soldier
Monday, November 5, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Author of The New York Times and The Washington Post notable book, The Piano Tuner, Mason comes to Boswell with his latest, which Pulitzer-winner Anthony Doerr calls “a dream of a novel.”

Part mystery, part war story, part romance, Winter Soldier tells the story of a medical student who enlists when World War I erupts across Europe. In a freezing outpost ravaged by typhus, he finds himself falling in love with the mysterious nurse from whom he must learn a brutal makeshift medicine.

From the gilded ballrooms of Imperial Vienna to the frozen forests of the Eastern Front, from hardscrabble operating rooms to battlefields thundering with Cossack cavalry, The Winter Soldier is the story of war and medicine, of family, of finding love in the sweeping tides of history, and finally, of the mistakes we make, and the precious opportunities to atone.

Daniel Mason is a physician and author of The Piano Tuner and A Far Country. A recipient of a fellowship from the National Endowment of the Arts, he is currently a clinical assistant professor of psychiatry at Stanford University, where he teaches courses in the humanities and medicine.


Barbara Joosse and Renée Graef, author and illustrator of Lulu and Rocky in Milwaukee
Wednesday, November 7, 6:30 pm, at Boswell

We’re so excited to present a picture book that celebrates Milwaukee and all it has to offer. The acclaimed writer/illustrator team has created a delightful story of Lulu the fox, who has the trip of a lifetime when she and her friend Pufferson the Penguin visit her cousin Rocky.

The invite arrives and the packing begins - across Lake Michigan by ferry they go. Lulu and Pufferson check into The Pfister Hotel, where they are met by Norman the doorman. The Urban Ecology Center, Discovery World, and the Bronze Fonz are just some of the sites on their trip.

Lulu and Rocky in Milwaukee is sure to be a popular gift for the holidays and for years to come. Celebrate its release with us, but if you can’t make it, Barbara and Renée will be appearing at numerous other locations in the Milwaukee area in November and December.

Port Washington-based Barbara Joosse has written fifty books for children, including Mama Do You Love Me? and Better Together: A Book About Family, which she wrote with her daughter Anneke Lisberg. Renée Graef has illustrated more than eighty books for children, including books for American Girl and a series of alphabet books for Sleeping Bear Press. Together they collaborated on a picture book about Cedarburg.


Rosemary Wells, author of Hand in Hand and the brand new Sleep, My Bunny
Thursday, November 8, 6:30 pm, at the Betty Brinn Children’s Room at Milwaukee Public Library’s Central Library, 814 W Wisconsin Ave

The Friends of the Milwaukee Public Library presents an evening with the beloved children’s book writer and illustrator Rosemary Wells. This event is in conjunction with a new exhibit of artwork from her 2016 release, Hand in Hand. While Central Library is not normally open on Thursday evenings, the Betty Brinn Children’s Room will be open for this special event.

Rosemary Wells has been enchanting kids and adults alike for many years with characters like Max the Bunny and Yoko the Cat. This past spring saw the release of Kit and Kaboodle, the story of a brother-and-sister cat duo who are bedeviled by a mischievous mouse named Spinka. And we’re thrilled to also have a special pre-release appearance of Sleep, My Bunny, a soothing lullaby for the little rabbit in all of us.

Connecticut-based Rosemary Wells has written and/or illustrated more than 120 books for children and has received many awards. She is the creator of the beloved Max and Ruby series, the Felix and Fiona Stories, and other books featuring Sophie the mouse. She is also the illustrator of My Very First Mother Goose and Here Comes Mother Goose, two volumes of traditional nursery rhymes edited by Iona Ope.


Marissa Meyer, author of Archenemies: Renegades Vol. 2
Thursday, November 8, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Boswell is thrilled to host an appearance of the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Lunar Chronicles, Marissa Meyer, with her long-awaited second installment of the Renegades series.

Register for free for this event at marissamke.bpt.me or upgrade to a ticket with a copy of Archenemies for $21, including taxes and ticket fees. Advance purchase of the book will give you priority in the signing line. Meyer will sign all copies brought to the event, she will only personalize copies of Archenemies, as well as one other title of the attendee's choice. She will sign memorabilia and pose for photos.

The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos reigned. They remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone, except the villains they once overthrew. Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. But as she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice - and in Nova. But Nova's allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both. In Archenemies, The Anarchists still have a secret weapon, one that Nova believes will protect her. The Renegades also have a strategy for overpowering the Anarchists, but both Nova and Adrian understand that it could mean the end of Gatlon City and the world as they know it.

Marissa Meyer is the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, which includes Cinder, Scarlet, and Winter, as well as the novel Heartless.


Monday, November 12, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Legendary Chicago blues producer Bruce Iglauer shares his unvarnished memoir of a life immersed in blues music and the business of the blues.

In 1970, Bruce Iglauer walked into Florence’s Lounge in the heart of South Side Chicago and was overwhelmed by the joyous, raw blues of Hound Dog Taylor and the HouseRockers. A year later, Iglauer produced Hound Dog’s debut album and pressed a thousand copies. From that album grew Alligator Records, the largest independent blues record label in the world.

Iglauer takes us behind the scenes, offering unforgettable stories of charismatic musicians and classic sessions, and delivering a look at what it’s like to work with the greats of the blues. It’s a vivid portrait of the extraordinary musicians and larger-than-life personalities who brought America’s music to life in the clubs of Chicago’s South and West Sides.

Bruce Iglauer is president and founder of Alligator Records and a Grammy-winning producer inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1997. Iglauer was founder of National Association of Independent Record Distributors and cofounder of Living Blues magazine. He is also a founder of the Chicago Blues Festival and codirector of the Blues Community Foundation. He received the American Association for Independent Music (A2IM) Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014.


Eugenia Kim, author of The Kinship of Secrets, in conversation with UWM’s Nan Kim
Tuesday, November 13, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Author of The Calligrapher’s Daughter, Kim appears at Boswell with her new novel, the riveting story of two sisters, one raised in the United States, the other in South Korea, and the family that bound them together even as the Korean War kept them apart. For this event, Kim will be in conversation with Nan Kim (no relation), author of the 2016’s Memory, Reconciliation, and Reunions in South Korea: Crossing the Divide.

In 1948 Najin and Calvin Cho, with their young daughter Miran, travel from South Korea to the United States in search of new opportunities. Wary of the challenges they know will face them, Najin and Calvin make the difficult decision to leave their infant daughter, Inja, behind with their extended family. But then war breaks out in Korea, and there is no end in sight to the separation.

Miran grows up in prosperous American suburbia, under the shadow of the daughter left behind, as Inja grapples in her war-torn land with ties to a family she doesn’t remember. Told through the alternating perspectives of the distanced sisters, and inspired by a true story, The Kinship of Secrets explores the cruelty of war, the power of hope, and what it means to be a sister.

Eugenia Kim is author of The Calligrapher's Daughter, which won the 2009 Borders Original Voices Award, was shortlisted for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, and was a critics' pick by The Washington Post. Her stories have appeared in Asia Literary Review, Washington City Paper, and Raven Chronicles. Kim teaches Fairfield University's Creative Writing Program. Nan Kim is an Associate Professor of History at UWM and Director of UWM’s Public History Specialization.


A ticketed event with Elizabeth Berg, author of Night of Miracles
Wednesday, November 14, 7 pm reception, 7:30 pm talk, at Lynden Sculpture Garden, 2145 W Brown Deer Rd

The bestselling author of the beloved novel The Story of Arthur Truluv appears for the Lynden’s Women’s Speaker Series with a delightful novel about surprising friendships, community, and the small acts of kindness that can change a life. Cosponsored by Milwaukee Reads and Boswell.

Tickets cost $30, $25 for Lynden members, and each includes an autographed copy of Night of Miracles, refreshments, and admission to the sculpture garden - come early to stroll the grounds! Register at lyndensculpturegarden.org/ElizabethBerg18 or by phone at (414) 446-8794.

Lucille is getting on in years, but she stays busy. Thanks to the inspiration of her dearly departed friend Arthur Truluv, she’s teaching baking classes, sharing the secrets to her delicious classic Southern yellow cake, the perfect pinwheel cookies, and other sweet essentials. Her classes have become so popular that she’s hired Iris, a new resident of Mason, Missouri, as an assistant. Iris doesn’t know how to bake but she needs to keep her mind off a big decision she sorely regrets. When a new family moves in next door and tragedy strikes, Lucille begins to look out for their son. In these difficult times, the residents of Mason come together and find the true power of community, just when they need it the most. This is a heartwarming novel that reminds us that the people we come to love are often the ones we don’t expect.

Elizabeth Berg is the author of the novels Open House, an Oprah’s Book Club selection, The Dream Lover, and Tapestry of Fortunes. Durable Goods and Joy School were selected as ALA Best Books of the Year.


The Mercy Housing Live in Hope Reception, featuring Peter Edelman, author of Not a Crime to be Poor: The Criminalization of Poverty in America
Thursday, November 15, 4 pm, at Milwaukee County War Memorial Center

Mercy Housing’s Live in Hope reception is a fun, inspiring event that engages community leaders to raise money to provide affordable homes and services to enable Milwaukee residents to work towards greater economic self-sufficiency. This year’s reception features speaker Peter Edelman. Cosponsored by Boswell. Registration for this event is $60, $45 for students, and sponsorship levels are available as well, at mercyhousing.org/2018-mhl-live-in-hope-registration-form.

A nationally known expert on poverty, Peter Edelman shows how not having money has been criminalized and shines a light on lawyers, activists, and policy makers working for a more humane approach. Awarded “Special Recognition” by the 2018 Robert F. Kennedy Book & Journalism Awards and Finalist for the American Bar Association’s 2018 Silver Gavel Book Award, Matthew Desmond, author of Evicted, calls Not a Crime to be Poor “a powerful investigation into the ways the United States has addressed poverty… Lucid and troubling.”

The Justice Department’s Ferguson Report exposed to the world a system of fines and fees levied for minor crimes that often resulted in jail sentences for thousands. Ferguson is everywhere in America today. Through money bail systems, fees and fines, and regulations against behavior that largely affect the homeless, and the substitution of prisons and jails for the mental hospitals that have traditionally served the impoverished, in one of the richest countries on Earth we have effectively made it a crime to be poor.

Peter Edelman is the Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Law and Public Policy and faculty director of the Center on Poverty and Inequality at Georgetown University Law Center. Edelman was a top advisor to Senator Robert F. Kennedy and served in President Clinton’s administration. He is author of So Rich, So Poor.


Thursday, November 15, 5:30 PM, at Boswell

Cosponsored by Panels Comic Book Club, Boswell presents the award-winning indie comics darling Liz Prince and her hilarious, awkward, touching, and occasionally heartbreaking strip-a-day journey through one of the most tumultuous years of her life.

Liz Prince invites you to spend a year walking in her (Converse) shoes! Look Back and Laugh collects the 365 comic strips she drew to document every day of her life in 2016. Follow Liz through such life-changing adventures as: buying a house, moving to a new state, getting married, crippling insomnia, and as always, lots of cats, cats, cats!

Influenced by autobiographical greats like Evan Dorkin, Ariel Schrag, James Kochalka, and Jeffrey Brown, Prince’s comics mix her real-life foibles with charming cartooning and comic timing. Full of humor, pathos, and insight, these comics reveal the ups and downs that make up the glamorous micro-celebrity life of a freelance cartoonist.

Since Liz Prince began regularly contributing to the Santa Fe zine Are We There Yet?, her comics have been featured in several anthologies, 5 gallery shows, and she has produced 2 mini-comics. Liz’s first full-length book Will You Still Love Me If I Wet the Bed?, won the Ignatz Award, and was followed by Delayed Replays and Alone Forever.


Andrea Gibson, author of Lord of the Butterflies
Saturday, December 1, 7:00 PM, at Boswell

Poet, activist, spoken-word artist, and author of stirring, introspective poetry collections such as Take Me With You and Pole Dancing to Gospel Hymns, Andrea Gibson appears at Boswell for a special evening in which they will speak and perform poems from their latest collection, Lord of the Butterflies.

Register for free at gibsonmke.bpt.me or upgrade to a book-with-ticket option for $17, which includes admission to the event, a copy of Lord of the Butterflies, and priority on the signing line. If we are near capacity for this event, Boswell will close to the general public, so be sure to register today!

Gibson’s latest collection is a masterful showcase from the poet whose writing and performances have captured the hearts of millions. The honesty of Gibson's work makes audiences and readers feel welcome as they are. With artful, nuanced looks at gender, romance, loss, and family, Lord of the Butterflies is a new peak in Gibson’s career. Each emotion here is deft and delicate, resting inside of imagery heavy enough to sink the heart, while giving the body wings to soar.

Andrea Gibson began their career in 1999 with a break-up poem at an open mic in Boulder, Colorado. In 2008, Gibson won the first ever Woman of the World Poetry Slam. Gibson is the author of four previous books of poetry and has released seven spoken-word albums.


More Upcoming Events

  • Saturday, November 17, 3:00 pm, at Boswell – Edgar Award finalist and Barry Award winner Allen Eskens, author of The Shadows We Hide, the sequel to The Life We Bury
  • Friday, November 30, 7:00 pm, at Boswell – Winner of the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize and the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award John Koethe, author of Walking Backwards: Poems 1966-2016
  • Saturday, December 1, 10 am at West Allis Public Library, 12 pm at Cudahy Family Library, and 2 pm at Greenfield Public Library – Your favorite bear is coming to Milwaukee! Bruce, the hero of Mother Bruce, is in town for the publication of Santa Bruce. Each library will have a storytime, and afterwards you can pose for pictures with Bruce. We’ll have Ryan T. Higgins books for sale at each library.
  • Thursday, December 6, 6:30 pm, at Boswell – Graphic artist and illustrator Jessica Hische, author of Tomorrow I'll Be Brave. Register for this free event at bravemke.bpt.me or upgrade to a book-with-ticket option for $19, including all taxes and fees.
  • Monday, January 14, 7:00 pm, at Boswell – Nick Petrie, author of Tear It Down, in conversation with WUWM’s Bonnie North

Please remember that while we try to update this page as frequently as possible, all events are subject to change. If you have any concerns, please contact Boswell. Also note that ticketed events do sell out, and all events are subject to capacity. It never hurts to come early.