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New Orleans Public Radio Holiday Schedule 2023-2024

The Reading Life with Daniel Brook and Kelly Harris

This week on The Reading Life: Daniel Brook, whose new book is “The Accident of Color: A Story of Race and Reconstruction," and poet Kelly Harris, the New Orleans literary outreach coordinator for Poets & Writers, Inc.

June 16 calendar

Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week:

Here in New Orleans:

  • The Maple Leaf Bar celebrates the 40th anniversary of the longest running poetry reading in the South on one of the most famous patios in New Orleans. John Travis’s Portals Press issues a new anthology of work from Maple Leaf Poets, and there will be a reading and signing Sunday at 3:30 p.m. at the Maple Leaf Bar. 
  • Poet Bill Lavender joins visual artist Hannah Chalew at the June Unlikely Salon, Monday, June 17, from 7-9 p.m. at Zeitgeist Theatre and Lounge, 6621 St. Claude Ave. in Arabi.
  • Lovejoy Boteler discusses and signs “Crooked Snake: The Life and Crimes of Albert Lepard,” Tuesday, June 18, at 6 p.m. at Garden District Book Shop.
  • Today’s guest, Daniel Brook, discusses and signs “The Accident of Color: A Story of Race and Reconstruction," Tuesday, June 18, at 7 p.m. at Antenna Gallery, 3701 St. Claude Ave.
  • Claudia Gray discusses and signs her books for young adults and her Star Wars novels Wednesday, June 19, at 5 p.m. at the Martin Luther King Library, 1611 Caffin Ave.
  • Slate national editor Josh Levin discusses and signs “The Queen: The Forgotten Life Behind an American Myth,” an account of the life and crimes of America's original "welfare queen," Linda Taylor, Wednesday, June 19, at 7 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center, 5342 St. Charles Ave.
  • Tammy L. Turner discusses and signs “Dick Waterman: A Life in Blues,” her new biography of the manager of Son House, Mississippi Fred McDowell, Buddy Guy, and Bonnie Raitt, and a host of other iconic blues artists, Thursday, June 20, at 6 p.m. at Octavia Books.
  • Maurice Carlos Ruffin and James Nolan read and discuss their work Thursday, June 20, at 6 p.m. at the Alvar Library, 913 Alvar St.
  • Dogfish presents Sharon Renee Thomas and Bryan Camp Thursday, June 20, at 7 p.m. at 2448 N. Villere.
  • Tubby and Coo’s Mid-City Book Shop presents Amanda Montell, author of "Word Slut: A Feminist Guide to Taking Back the English Language," Sunday, June 23, from 1-3 p.m. at Reading Between the Wines at Pearl Wine Co.., 3700 Pearl Wine Co.
  • Narrative 4 (N4), in partnership with the New Orleans Museum of Art’s Art & Letters series, presents an extraordinary night of music and literature, Sunday June 23 at 6:30 p.m. at NOMA. Eight international authors will read excerpts of their literary work accompanied by a musical composition created to match the piece and the author’s home region. The writers include:
    • Man Booker Prize-winning author Marlon James from Jamaica
    • National Book Award-winning author Colum McCann from Ireland
    • Sierra Club John Muir Awardee Terry Tempest Williams from Utah
    • New York Times bestselling author Ishmael Beah from Sierra Leone
    • Former Louisiana State Poet Laureate Darrell Bourque
    • Irish novelist Ruth Gilligan
    • Persian, Paris-based author Lila Azam Zanganeh
    • PEN Awardee Rob Spillman from New York
  • Zydeco superstar Bruce “Sunpie” Barnes of New Orleans, composer of the musical pieces, will be joined onstage by Colm Mac Con Iomaire, famed violinist from the Irish band The Frames, along with a New Orleans brass band and other local musicians. The event is free and open to the public. Please RSVP at or call 504.658.4128. Doors open at 6:30 pm.
The Reading Life in 2010, Susan Larson was the book editor for The New Orleans Times-Picayune from 1988-2009. She has served on the boards of the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival and the New Orleans Public Library. She is the founder of the New Orleans chapter of the Women's National Book Association, which presents the annual Diana Pinckley Prizes for Crime Fiction.. In 2007, she received the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities lifetime achievement award for her contributions to the literary community. She is also the author of The Booklover's Guide to New Orleans. If you run into her in a local bookstore or library, she'll be happy to suggest something you should read. She thinks New Orleans is the best literary town in the world, and she reads about a book a day.