Upcoming Events at The Bookworm

Saturday, April 6 / 1 p.m. | Alan Kolok will sign Twist ($15.95). When Iowa State University environmental science professor Alex Pendergraf reads about a horrific mass murder in Stockton, California, his scientific curiosity is piqued. Could the killer's rage be somehow related to Alex's research on prions, the misformed proteins that cause Mad Cow Disease? As Alex digs into the toxicological mystery, he discovers a new infectious agent dubbed "the Stockton Prion" that causes mood swings, bouts of aggression, and unspeakable violence. And what's more it's spreading. With the clock running out, it's up to Alex and his colleagues to curtail the violence threatening to spread across Stockton. But with the prion infecting Alex himself, it might already be too late.

 

 

 

Sunday, April 14 / 1 p.m. | Carson Vaughan will sign Zoo Nebraska: The Dismantling of an American Dream ($14.95). Royal, Nebraska, population eighty-one--where the church, high school, and post office each stand abandoned, monuments to a Great Plains town that never flourished. But for nearly twenty years, they had a zoo, seven acres that rose from local peculiarity to key tourist attraction to devastating tragedy. And it all began with one man's outsize vision.

When Dick Haskin's plans to assist primatologist Dian Fossey in Rwanda were cut short by her murder, Dick's devotion to primates didn't die with her. He returned to his hometown with Reuben, an adolescent chimp, in the bed of a pickup truck and transformed a trailer home into the Midwest Primate Center. As the tourist trade multiplied, so did the inhabitants of what would become Zoo Nebraska, the unlikeliest boon to Royal's economy in generations and, eventually, the source of a power struggle that would lead to the tragic implosion of Dick Haskin's dream.

 

Saturday, April 20 / 1 p.m. | Celebrating National Poetry Month with Nebraska's new State Poet, Matt Mason. Featured books of poetry include

Poems from Louder than a Bomb: Great Plains 2017-18 (edited by Gina Keplinger. $10.00). Louder Than a Bomb is an annual teen poetry festival and competition based in Omaha and featuring schools from all over Nebraska and the Great Plains. Louder Than a Bomb is one of the programs of the Nebraska Writers Collective, an Omaha-based literary education non-profit organization. The Nebraska Writers Collective believes that everyone has stories worth sharing, and Louder Than a Bomb helps middle school and high school students throughout Nebraska and Iowa share them. This is a collection of 20 poems from the 2011-2018 competition.

The Baby That Ate Cincinnati by Matt Mason ($18.00) is a collection of poems about parenthood. And horror movies. It's about that other side of things, the bit with the wonder and the magic as well as the terror of trying to redefine yourself and your place in the universe with what is really a very strange and monumental change in who you are, what you do, and what you truly fear. Ultimately, you know, it's life affirming, just like all classic scary movies, by the time the credits roll.

 

 

 

Friday, April 26 / 6 p.m. | Stephanie Anderson will sign One Size Fits None: A Farm Girl's Search for the Promise of Regenerative Agriculture (University of Nebraska Press, $21.95). Sustainable has long been the rallying cry of agricultural progressives; given that much of our nation's farm and ranch land is already degraded. Industrial agriculture has also co-opted the term for marketing purposes without implementing better practices. Stephanie Anderson argues that in order to provide nutrient-rich food and fight climate change, we need to move beyond sustainable to regenerative agriculture, a practice that is highly tailored to local environments and renews resources. 

In One Size Fits None Anderson follows diverse farmers across the United States: a South Dakota bison rancher who provides an alternative to the industrial feedlot; an organic vegetable farmer in Florida who harvests microgreens; a New Mexico super-small farmer who revitalizes communities; and a North Dakota midsize farmer who combines livestock and grain farming to convert expensive farmland back to native prairie. The use of these nontraditional agricultural techniques show how varied operations can give back to the earth rather than degrade it. This book will resonate with anyone concerned about the future of food in America, providing guidance for creating a better, regenerative agricultural future. 

 

 

 

 

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