Author News and Book Reports

Robert Pinsky bridges tragedy of New Orleans, war, and forgetting with power of words
It was an evening to remember when award winning poet Campbell McGrath introduced three-time U.S. Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky at the Miami Book Fair 2007. Setting a theme of 'patriotism,' Pinsky introduced two volumes of poetry,Gulf Music and An Invitation To Poetry. First, Pinsky read Samurai Song and a poem called ABC from An Invitation To Poetry (W.W. Norton with free DVD; 2004), promising to play a couple of clips from the DVD in the question and answer period after his reading. Explaining the title of his latest work, Gulf Music (Farrar, Straus and Giroux paperback; September, 2008), as a reference to the tragedy of New Orleans, the Gulf Wars, and the gulf of time created by 'forgetting,' Pinsky read eight selections from his 96-page collection, beginning with Poem Of Disconnected Parts, and followed by The Forgetting; Louie, Louie; Immature Song; Book; Other Hand; Antique;and his book-ending translation of lines from the last Canto of Dante's Paradiso. Next, Pinsky showed a video of a young African-American man talking about his discovery of poetry by Sylvia Plath and reading a poem by her, before taking questions from the audience about the editorial layout process of poetry collections; the power ofin The Bible and the power of poetry in prisons; the relationship of politics and poetry; his sense of purpose in writing poetry; his love of unusual sounding names; and his suggestions for a practical approach tofinding your poet's voice. Pinsky wrapped his presentation with a video of a young woman talking about her father, who was blinded in World War II, and reading a poem that moved her by Wilfred Owen.

Book and Author Headlines

Azar Nafisi cites books of humanities and science as bedrock of democracy and freedom: Bestselling author, Iranian born Azar Nafisi tells why she became an American citizen and what it means to her in her new book 'The Republic of Imagination.'

Mary Gordon, Stuart Dybek, and Russell Banks take a short cut: Mary Gordon, Stuart Dybek, and Russell Banks read their stuff and take a few questions from the audience.

Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana have one at The Last Kind Words Saloon in Miami: Award-winning novelist and co-author Diana Ossana reflect on cowboys, women characters, and over twenty years of writing partnership.

Joyce Carol Oates reads from Lovely, Dark, Deep at the 2014 Miami Book Fair International: Prolific, award-winning author Joyce Carol Oates reads from her Pulitzer Prize nominated collection of short stories, Lovely, Dark, Deep at the Miami Book Fair.

Martin Short stirs his humor with poignancy and empowerment: Canadian-born actor, comedian, singer, producer and now author Martin Short reveals trade secrets and more in his appearance at BookExpo America.

Alan Cumming searches for answers and finds more questions: Alan Cumming tells his family story at BookExpo America 2014 about abuse, identity, and Russian roulette.

Colm Toibin introduces Nora Webster and what it is be an Irish author: Award-winning, bestelling Irish novelist Colm Toibin introduces his heroine, Norah Webster at BookExpo America 2014.

Mona Simpson, Ann Patchett, and Lucinda Franks compare notes on life, lit, and love: Bestselling, award-winning authors Mona Simpson, Ann Patchett, and Lucinda Franks take the stage at the 2014 Miami Book Fair International to talk about their most recent books and compare notes on life, literature, and love.

Maureen McLane reveals her free-ranging poetic vision in her National Book Award Finalist, This Blue: 2014 National Book Award Finalist in Poetry and 2012 National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist in Autobiography Maureen McClane reads and talks about six poems from her NBA Finalist, This Blue.

Fanny Howe makes poetry out of paradox in her 2014 National Book Award Finalist, Second Childhood: Prize-winning American poet, novelist, and short story writer Fanny Howe reads from her 2014 National Book Award Finalist in Poetry, Second Childhood.

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