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Maureen Aitken's debut novel, The Paton Saint of Lost Girls, has made the Shortlist for the Sarton Women's Book Awards™. The awards program is sponsored by the Story Circle Network, an international nonprofit community of women writers. Winners will be announced in April.
Also in January, the book was the featured title for Beyond the Words with Tiffanné & Sadie, a new book club at the Barnes & Noble at the Galleria in Edina, Minn. Aitken attended the group's Jan. 26 meeting and talked about the book and answered questions from her readers.
Calumet Editions author Elliott Foster has a presentation and signing planned to promote Panic River, his latest book, at Moon Palace Books in Minneapolis. The event takes place on Wed., Feb. 12, beginning at 7 p.m.
Panic River is the fictional story of Corey Fischer, an almost forty-year-old gay man who experiences long-standing rejection by a homophobic father, a lack of support from his distant mother, and betrayal by the person who should be loving him the most—his partner, Nick.
The book has received several favorable reviews. San Francisco Book Review said, “This book was a fascinating read about love, tough love, and all of the complicated relationships that happen when a person decides to be him or herself. Well-written with all types of little life lessons thrown in, this book was engaging and entertaining. A book well worth reading, geared towards young adults to adults.”
Midwest Book Review said, "Novel readers who choose Panic River for its theme of a middle-aged gay man facing his demons and much-changed circumstances will uncover the roots of these connections and will learn how they evolve. They will find Panic River a powerfully evocative, thought-provoking consideration of how life moves on, how freedoms evaporate and re-form, and how one man makes difficult choices that bring him full circle in an unexpected way.”
Calumet Editions just released Panic River on Nov. 1, 2019. Learn more about the book at ElliottFoster.com.
John Kerr signed copies of Mohamed’s Dream at Next Chapter Booksellers in St. Paul on Jan. 14. The nonfiction title shares the story of Mohamed Fofana, one of the young boys killed in a landslide at St. Paul’s Lilydale Park on May 22, 2012. The St. Louis Park boy, and another child, were on a school field trip hunting for fossils when the accident happened.
Author Jon Kerr is a longtime journalist and writer who also happened to be a neighborhood and environmental advocate for Lilydale Park when the landslide occurred. The book not only sheds new light on what went wrong, it shares how Mohammed’s family is working to keep their son’s memory alive.
A free showing of the documentary, “The Wall: The Stories of the 2018 Minneapolis Homeless Camp,” took place on Jan. 9 in memory of the death of one of the men featured in the film. The showing was at the Grand Makwa Cinema in Onamia, Minn., and the Mille Lacs Messenger covered the event.
Earl Monchamp Junior was a member of the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe, and one of four people of native American descent featured in the film to die as a result of addiction since the film's release in Summer 2019.
The documentary by independent film director and producer Brandon Ferdig shares the stories of several of the people who lived in the Hiawatha homeless camp that sprang up last winter in Minneapolis.