Summer in New York: Book events and reading series

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  • Photograph: Timothy Greenfield-Sanders

    Toni Morrison

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Bryant Park

  • Kay Ryan

    Photograph: Christina Koci Hernandez

    Kay Ryan

    Kay Ryan
  • Lit Crawl NYC

    Lit Crawl NYC

    Lit Crawl NYC
  • Photograph: Jennnifer Chaney

    Michael Chabon

  • Photograph: Joseph DeSciose

    New York Botanical Garden

  • Paul Auster

    Paul Auster

    Paul Auster
  • Photograph: Joan Marcus

    Tony Kushner

  • Dave Hill by Beowulf Sheehan

    © Beowulf Sheehan305 East 4th Street, 3rd FloorNew York, NY 10009www.beowulfsheehan.commail@beowulfsheehan.com+1 917 450 2, Photographer: Beowulf Sheehan

    Dave Hill (USA), comedian, musician, and writer, photographed New York, New York, January 24, 2012. Photo © Beowulf Sheehan

    Dave Hill by Beowulf Sheehan
  • Poetry from the Rooftops

  • joycecaroloates2CRIT

    joycecaroloates2CRIT
  • Anthony Bourdain

    Anthony Bourdain

    Anthony Bourdain
  • Symphony Space

    Symphony Space

    Symphony Space
  • Christopher Buckley

    Christopher Buckley

    Christopher Buckley
  • Sylvia Plachy, Photograph: Sylvia Plachy

    Sheila Heti

  • Photograph: Cindy Johnson

    Denis Johnson

  • Photograph: Julienne Schaer

    Books Beneath the Bridge begins in Brooklyn Bridge Park

  • Photograph: Maricruz Bilboa

    Mark Strand

Photograph: Timothy Greenfield-Sanders

Toni Morrison

RECOMMENDED: Summer in New York guide


Thalia Book Club: Toni Morrison's Home

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

One of America’s greatest living authors visits New York City to celebrate the release of her tenth novel, Home. A story of homecoming and its struggles,  the novel’s compact but lyrical narrative follows an African-American Korean War vet, Frank Money, who returns to the U.S. after combat, only to encounter a level of racism that’s difficult to overcome. This event represents a chance to engage in dialogue with the author, so fans should get their tickets as soon as possible.

  1. Symphony Space 2537 Broadway, at 95th St
  2. Wed May 14
Buy tickets
Kay Ryan

Kay Ryan

  • Critics choice

Kay Ryan, a former U.S. poet laureate, has spent her lifetime writing compact yet imaginative, suggestive verses. Her recent collection, The Best of It, showcased a number of her finest works and won the Pulitzer Prize in 2011. Hear old favorites and Ryan's latest scribblings tonight.

  1. 92nd Street Y
  2. Mon, May 14; 7pm
Lit Crawl NYC

Lit Crawl Brooklyn

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Writers can raise their pint glasses and voices as the bibliophiles behind Lit Crawl NYC, an offshoot of San Francisco’s Litquake, bring their bookish happenings to bars in Brooklyn. Authors Mark Haddon and Amy Sohn, journals including Granta and Electric Literature, and publishers such as Tin House and Akashic Books host the cheeky reading events. A literary cabaret, a science fair and a radio drama are among the tipsy happenings across Cobble Hill. litcrawl.org/nyc. After-party: 61 Local, 61 Bergen St between Boerum Pl and Smith St.

  1. Various locations
  2. Sat May 19; 6–7:45pm

John Cheever at 100

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Friends and family including Michael Chabon, Ben Cheever, Susan Cheever, Blake Bailey and Allan Gurganus gather to talk about the life and work of the noted suburban chronicler as well as read from some of his work.

  1. 92nd Street Y 1395 Lexington Ave, between 91st and 92nd Sts
  2. Thu May 22
Buy tickets

From Monet to Mallarmé: The Salon Series

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

Poets Rosanna Warren, Bill Zavatsky, Mark Polizzotti and Metta Sama lure fans of verse and Monet to the Bronx for an afternoon of readings from Baudelaire, Mallarmé, Rimbaud and Verlaine. Interested parties should gather at the Perennial Garden.

  1. New York Botanical Garden Bronx River Pkwy, at Fordham Rd
  2. Sat Oct 25
More info

Selected Shorts: A Passion for Central Park

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

One of the contributors to a new anthology of tales about the great, green reprieve in the middle of Manhattan, Paul Auster talks about Central Park as muse. Afterward, actors including Leonard Nimoy read other stories from the collection by the likes of Colson Whitehead and Susan Cheever.

  1. Symphony Space 2537 Broadway, at 95th St
  2. Wed May 28
Buy tickets

"Death of a Salesman: A Playwrights' Conversation"

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Tony Kushner leads a discussion about Arthur Miller and his most famous play, a revival of which is currently running on Broadway. As a playwright consumed by structure and truly building a play, Kushner will certainly have something to say about Miller's architecture as well as his philosophies and politics.

  1. 92nd Street Y 1395 Lexington Ave, between 91st and 92nd Sts
  2. Wed May 28
Buy tickets

Dave Hill in conversation with Ira Glass

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Coy, boastful and often shirtless rocker-comic Dave Hill celebrates the publication of his new collection of funny, personal essays (Tasteful Nudes) with This American Life host Ira Glass. Among the subjects on the table for discussion are the magic of bidets in Japan and stealing 300 pounds of meat.

  1. McNally Jackson Books 52 Prince St, between Lafayette and Mulberry Sts
  2. Until Fri Sep 6
More info

Eat, Drink and Be Literary: Denis Johnson

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Fans of Denis Johnson—who began his career with the vignettes of Jesus’ Son and stayed on through the delusional fantasies of Already Dead—probably didn’t see his 2007 novel, Tree of Smoke, coming. Johnson married his nobly ramshackle prose to a Vietnam War–era plot in a stunning novel of massive proportions, and followed it up with last year’s beautiful Pulitzer finalist Train Dreams. He eschews much of the attention thrown his way, so this social event is a rare chance to hear the author talk about his work in a casual setting.

  1. Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) 30 Lafayette Ave, between Ashland Pl and St. Felix St
  2. Wed Apr 23 - Wed May 28
More info
Mark Strand

Second Annual NYC Poetry Festival

  • Critics choice

Last year, a number of the city’s poetry reading series and their affiliated collectives took over Governors Island for a day, creating a stage for the many voices of NYC, both celebrated and underground. This year, the crew of the Poetry Society of New York does it again, bringing readings from the Poetry Brothel, Cave Canem and Fireside Follies as well as verse luminaries such as Mark Strand. Head to the island to experience as many verses in this summer idyll as possible. tpsny.org. $5.

  1. Governors Island
  2. Sat Jul 21, Sun Jul 22; 11:30am-5pm
Books Beneath the Bridge begins in Brooklyn Bridge Park

Books Beneath the Bridge

  • Critics choice
  • Free

This new series, produced in conjunction with a half dozen of the best independent bookshops in Brooklyn, takes advantage of the newly renovated Brooklyn Bridge Park and its natural backdrop, the Manhattan skyline. Every Monday night for six weeks, writers including big names (Martin Amis) and local heroes (Lizz Winstead) make an excursion to the waterfront. The event is both a literary experience and a picnic opportunity. brooklynbridgepark.org.

  1. Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1
  2. Mon at 7pm. July 9 - Aug 13.


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