One of the truly remarkable experiences we’ve had here recently was a reading by Paul Genega of his short prose piece, A Stone For Nina. An elegy really, the story describes a fascinating and unusual older woman who befriends a group of naive but intelligent college boys. It’s the late ’60s Washington, D.C. Nina has a long tale to tell about her life, full of strange twists and turns and possible fabrications. She captures the heart and imagination of our narrator, a sensitive and perceptive soul. Author and poet Paul Genega’s reading of this piece joined voice, cadence, word, and physical gesture all in subtle and expressive alignment. It was as if all the many disparate elements of a life harmonized in the work of this artist, writer Paul Genega.
In fact, Stone for Nina is such an impressive work, I’ve decided to devote an entire writing workshop to the piece. We will read and closely examine the piece, and use it as inspiration for our own long loving look at character, memory and storytelling. Contact the shop for details about this summer workshop, “Character, Memory and the Long Short Story”.
We were delighted that Paul’s proud father, in his nineties, was able to attend the event and share in the accomplishment of his son.
Editor, publisher and poet Antje Katcher also read from her new poetry collection, For Bananafish, a collection of recent work, sestinas and haikus that demonstrate strict adherence to form combined with surprising flights of imagination. Both works are published by Three Mile Harbor Press. Signed copies are available at Canio’s.
Lucky for us we had a pre-publication book launch with award-winning writer Lucette Lagnado the weekend before the storm hit Sag Harbor. Her lucid new memoir The Arrogant Years has just been released. During five long days without electrical power at home, we read Arrogant Years feverishly by the flickering light of an oil lamp. The book charts the course of Lucette’s mother’s early hardships as a young girl in Cairo. Despite many obstacles, Edith is one day given the key to the pasha’s library, something like being handed the key to heaven for one who so loves books and for whom books were a literal means of sustenance.
Lagnado’s first memoir, the riveting Man in the White Sharkskin Suit: A Jewish Family’s Exodus from Old Cairo to the New World, has been a Canio’s bestseller since its release in 2007. And now Arrogant Years: One’s Girl’s Search for Her Lost Youth, from Cairo to Brooklyn, earns its place close to our heart. Written with the drive of an experienced investigative reporter, one whose love of literature shapes every chapter, Lagnado’s Arrogant Years is a courageous look at the struggles both she and her mother faced in navigating a world often treacherous for two particularly gifted women. We have signed copies of both memoirs by Lucette Lagnado and highly recommend them both. Those long days without power would have been much bleaker if it weren’t for Arrogant Years to pull us through.
Published August 22, 2010
Bookselling in the 21st century , Bookstore Lore , Memoir , Novelists , Reading events , Uncategorized , Writing
Tags: James Salter, letter writing, memorable days, Robert Phelps
Memorable Days: The Selected Letters of James Salter and Robert Phelps
August 21, 2010
Novelist Robert Phelps described novelist James Salter as a “minority of one; a new herb in the cabinet,” and later wrote that Salter’s letters were like gospel to him. Phelps introduced Salter to the works of a dozen writers crucially important to shaping him as a novelist. Salter says Phelps was one of the most important influences in his life and in whatever he wrote after they met. The correspondence which began with a fan letter from Phelps to Salter spanned decades. The intimacy of the letters continues.
Bob Morris discusses True Tales of Double Dating with my Dad
July 3, 2009
Bob Morris, author of Assisted Loving, after his reading
Funny, moving, heartfelt, irreverent – Bob Morris enthralled his audience as he described his caring relationship with his parents. He spoke in vivid detail of his many memories of their last years. Morris played a hilarious Allan Sherman tune “You Gotta Have Skin” on his ukulele, in tribute to father. We laughed and felt the love they shared. Bob’s great gift is his ability to write and speak about this tender time in his life with humor and pathos. Bravo, Mr. Morris! We have a few signed copies of Assisted Loving available. Call us to reserve a copy. (631-725-4926).
Former Sag Harbor band member, Bob Morris, entertains the crowd