Books

Macmillan Publishers

Katherine Applegate won one of the biggest honors in children’s literature - the Newbery Medal - for her 2012 novel, The One and Only IvanThe book, written in the first person perspective of a gorilla, made readers think about how we treat animals.

Applegate raises some equally complex questions in her latest novel.

Andrew Langdal / Flickr

Detroit was once the industrial heart of America, the giant of the world’s auto industry, and the driving beat of Motown.  As the city narrative goes, those days have passed and the city sits like a veritable ghost town on the left bank of the Detroit River.

monikakorra.org

Monika Kørra, of Norway, was a student at Southern Methodist University in Texas a few years ago. She competed as an elite-level track athlete, but her life took a major turn when she was kidnapped leaving a party and brutally gang raped.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 74% of rapes are never reported and 15 out of 16 rapists never go to jail. Fortunately in Kørra's case, all three men were found and arrested within a week of her attack.

Writer Jojo Moyes has a name that lacks gravitas. To be honest, I even feel a bit silly saying her name when I recommend her novels to people — which I do, often and energetically. It's hard to imagine a "Jojo" ever winning the Nobel Prize for Literature; but Moyes has already won a pretty good consolation prize — that is, the kind of staunch, adoring readership that will follow her novels anywhere they go.

kathleenernst.com / Wisconsin Historical Society Press

Even with a warm couple of days this week, fall is unquestionably in the air in Wisconsin. You’ve probably been able to turn off the air conditioner, the leaves will soon begin to turn, and it’s time to finish picking tomatoes and start getting the sweaters and sweatshirts out of storage.

jaimeehills.wordpress.com / Waywiser Press

One published collection into her career, Milwaukee poet Jaimee Hills is an award-winner.

Hills’s new book is called How to Avoid Speaking, and it’s the recipient of the 10th Anthony Hecht Poetry Prize.  The poems have a little something for everyone, in terms of style, tone, form, and subject matter. 

Oneterry Aka Terry Kearney / Flickr

Milwaukee author Lauren Fox’s latest novel that came out over the summer is called Days of Awe, which she told Lake Effect about in a recent interview (included in audio below).

Macmillan Publishers

Regardless of your personal history, most people can agree that sixth, seventh and eighth grades are a pivotal period in a child’s life – the middle grades between adolescence and young adulthood. And the new middle grade novel by Milwaukee area native Jane Kelley has that complicated transition at its heart.

ellenbravo.com

Ellen Bravo isn't giving up on being a Milwaukee political activist, she is just adding novelist to her title.

Bravo currently heads Family Values @ Work Consortium, the group advocates for issues such as paid sick days and family leave insurance in the workplace. Before that, she was the national director of the organization 9to5, which focuses on a similar set of issues that impact working women.

Penguin Random House

Computers today are doing things that we thought were impossible, even just a few years ago.  They're doing everything from study legal briefs to driving cars, to vacuuming the house.  And that has society edging toward a tipping point.

"We've reached a point where the technology is now so advanced that it is eliminating jobs faster than it's creating new ones. That has never happened before," says Fortune magazine's senior editor at large Geoff Colvin

Penguin Random House

If you don’t know anything about Alexandra Petri’s column for the Washington Post, the fact that it’s called “Compost” should tip you off.  It’s a humor column, at least most of the time, appearing multiple times a week online and weekly in print.

Petri grew up partly in Fond du Lac and partly in Washington, D.C., while her dad, Tom Petri, represented his Wisconsin district in Congress.

New Rivers Press

Karen Lee Boren left her hometown of Milwaukee years ago, but it’s never been far from her mind, her heart or her writing.

Boren's new collection of twelve short stories, called Mother Tongue, features a remarkable array of characters. The stories were written over a span of twenty years, with characters and themes inspired by her own life experiences.

HarperCollins Publishers / harpercollins.com

Author and Milwaukee native Cynthia Swanson's novel,  The Bookseller, was sparked by her own realization that the life she was living was not the one she had pictured for herself.

Swanson says, "One day I was at the gym... and I just had this moment for a second where I just thought, 'what in the world am I doing in this life? What happened to life I used to have?'"

Desert Agama / Flickr

When Ann O’Farrell first entered the workplace, she was a drama therapist, a theater set and costume designer and helped run a children’s theater in Ireland. 

Macmillan Publishers

Major changes happened in the world of baseball just after World War II, representing a unique period in the sport's history. Seasons were tenuous during the war. Hundreds of ballplayers left their teams to join the military and were replaced by players who were ineligible to fight, or whose better playing days were behind them.

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