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Book Briefs for Jan. 8-14

Urbanologist to speak on travel writing, city planning

Max Grinnell, urbanologist, traveler and writer for The Rough Guide and Frommer’s travel guides, is scheduled to speak on making travel writing meaningful at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Windmill Library, 7060 W. Windmill Lane, and 2 p.m. Sunday at the Rainbow Library, 3150 N. Buffalo Drive. He is set to speak on the future of cities in the 21st century, highlighting challenges and opportunities at 2 p.m. Saturday at the West Charleston Library, 6301 W. Charleston Blvd. He plans to deliver an abbreviated history of travel writing in the United States at 11 a.m. Sunday at the Summerlin Library, 1771 Inner Circle Drive. All presentations are free. For more on Grinnell, visit theurbanologist.com.

Jimi Hendrix’s sister presents book of rock legend’s lyrics

Janie L. Hendrix, sister of the late guitarist Jimi Hendrix, plans to sign copies of a book she compiled, "Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyric Book," at 7 p.m. today at the 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble. The book includes lyrics to all of Jimi Hendrix’s classic rock songs and unpublished songs from "Valley of Neptune" and more. Some of the lyrics appear in original handwritten forms, often scribbled on hotel stationary.

Doctoral scholars plan book signing

Join Cheryl Lentz and other authors of "The Refractive Thinker" series, books featuring the works of doctoral scholars including Julie Ducharme, Pat Dues, Ed Knab and Gillian Silvers, for a summit and book signing scheduled at 1 p.m. Saturday at the 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble.

Signing set for ‘In the Midst of Cowboys, Crooners, and Gangsters’

Elaine Cali McNamara is slated to sign copies of her memoir "In the Midst of Cowboys, Crooners, and Gangsters" at 1 p.m. Saturday at the 8915 W. Charleston Blvd. Barnes & Noble. Visit inthemidstofcowboyscroonersand gangsters.com for more on the author.

Library plans Mob Month activities

The Las Vegas-Clark County Library District plans a series of free events related to the mob with ex-mobsters, law enforcement officials, authors, historians and more at 7 p.m. Tuesdays in January at the Clark County Library, 1401 E. Flamingo Road. All events are intended for mature audiences. Seating is limited. Entry wristbands will be given out starting at 6 p.m. the day of each event.The schedule includes:

n When the Mob Ran Vegas, today, panelists will discuss life in Las Vegas during the mob’s heyday. Guests include americanmafia.com columnist and former Las Vegas City Councilman Steve Miller and authors Cathy Scott and Wendy Mazaros.

n The IRS vs. the Chicago Outfit, Jan. 15, Las Vegas Review-Journal columnist John L. Smith is set to moderate as former Chicago mob associates Frank Cullotta and Tony Montana and author Dennis Griffin chat with current and retired agents from the IRS criminal investigation division about what really happened and how Hollywood got it wrong.

n Remembering Henry Hill, Jan. 22, ex-mobster-turned-author and film producer Sal Polisi will reminisce with guests about Henry Hill, whose life was portrayed in the movie "Goodfellas." Included is a screening of an interview Polisi conducted with Hill days before his death.

n When the Law Kicked the Mob Out of Vegas, Jan. 29, former Clark County Sheriff Ralph Lamb, whose experiences are portrayed in the new CBS series "Vegas," and guests will share stories of memorable encounters with the Hells Angels, Chicago gangster Johnny Rosselli and his involvement as technical adviser on the TV show.

For more information, visit lvccld.org or call 702-507-3458.

Summerlin Library to host Readers and writers workshop series

A readers and writers workshop series sponsored by poet, editor and writer Barbara Miller is scheduled from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. the second Saturday of every month at the Summerlin Library, 1771 Inner Circle Drive. January’s topic is travel writing and journaling. For more information, call 702-507-3866.Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators plan one-day workshop

The Nevada Region of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators plans The Write Resolution workshop from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Jan. 26 at the Las Vegas Day School, 3275 Red Rock St. Faculty members scheduled to participate include novelists Ellen Hopkins, Suzanne Morgan Williams, Susan Hart Lindquist, Terri Farley and agent Keren Grencik. Registration for society members is $100 before Jan. 20 or $125 at the door. Nonmembers pay $125 or $135. Manuscript and portfolio reviews are available for an additional $40.

For more information, visit nevadascbwi.org.

‘Starters’ signing set for Jan. 18

When an epidemic wipes out everyone from the age of 20 to 60, children are left to fend for themselves in Lissa Price’s dystopian sci-fi teen novel "Starters." Price plans to sign copies of the book at 7 p.m. Jan. 18 at the 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble.

Library District plans book fair

The Clark County Library, 1401 E. Flamingo Road, is signing up local published authors for the fifth annual Spring Fling Book Fair, scheduled from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 6. Authors who have books to sell can sign up for signing table sessions from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. or 1:30 to 3 p.m. Space is limited. The main theater is expected to feature a Hollywood authors panel, a concert and more.

For more information, contact library scheduling specialist Julie Okabayashi at okabayashij@lvccld.org.

Learn to write irresistible queries

LeeAnne Krusemark, author of "101 Ways to Make $Money$ as a Freelance Writer," is scheduled to talk about writing irresistible query letters during a meeting of the Las Vegas Writers Group scheduled for 7 p.m. Jan. 17 at the Tap House, 5589 W. Charleston Blvd. The meeting fee is $5. For more information, visit meetup.com/las-vegas-writers.

‘Bad Kitty’ author plans Vegas visit

Nick Bruel, bestselling author of the humorous children’s picture and chapter books about the cantankerous Bad Kitty, is scheduled to meet with readers at 2 p.m. Jan. 21 at the 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble.

Browse rare books in new app

Searching for rare books? Now there’s an app for that. Bauman Rare Books, which has a shop in The Palazzo, 3325 Las Vegas Blvd. South, recently launched an app available on iTunes that allows readers to see new acquisitions, browse catalogs, view videos, make purchases and manage their personal accounts and share items via Twitter and Facebook. If you have $65,000 to spend on a first-edition "The Catcher in the Rye" signed by J.D. Salinger, the app has you covered. The catalog can also be perused at baumanrarebooks.com.

Author to host resume workshop

PJ Sheldon, author of "Career Strategies for Success," is scheduled to host a free resume and cover letter workshop at 10 a.m. Jan. 19 in the Green Valley Library, 2797 N. Green Valley Parkway. Sheldon is set to return to launch her new book "You’re Hired" at 11 a.m. Jan. 26. Visit mypubliclibrary.org for more information.

Local author series to feature Michael Darby and Smile

Local writers and performers Michael Darby and Smile, authors of the children’s book "I have a Friend Who…", are scheduled to meet with readers from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Jan. 23 in the lobby of the Paseo Verde Library, 280 S. Green Valley Parkway, as part of the READ Local Author Series. Visit mypubliclibrary.org for more information.

Book conservation course offered

Learn to protect a fragile or treasured book with an archival clam shell box. Michael Frazier, conservator for Lied Library Special Collections at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, is scheduled to teach participants to create several types of protective archival enclosures for books. Students are encouraged to bring a book from their personal collection to work with. The course, part of Special Collections’ Historic and Artistic Works Conservation series, is scheduled to meet from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturdays Jan. 26 through Feb. 9 at the library, 4505 S. Maryland Parkway. Registration is $195, which includes materials. To register, call 702-895-3394 or visit continuingeducation.unlv.edu.

Signing set for ‘A Heart So Broken’

Local author Christene Houston is slated to sign copies of her teen romance novel "A Heart So Broken" at 1 p.m. Jan. 26 at the 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble.

Author to sign adventure novels

Arleen Alleman is set to sign copies of her Darcy Farthing adventure novels "Current Assets" and "Currents of Vengeance" at 1 p.m. Jan. 27 at the 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble.

Author plans writers’ conference

Author Bobbie Christensen is scheduled to offer a writers’ conference from 1 to 6:45 p.m. Feb. 9 at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Paradise campus, 851 E. Tropicana Ave. Three sessions are slated:

n Writing your first book (or seventh!), a 10-step writing method designed to complete a book in as little as two months is scheduled from 1 to 2:45 p.m.

n Publishing your book, learn the differences between traditional and self-publishing, and learn about copyrights, the Library of Congress and tax concerns from 3 to 4:45 p.m.

n Marketing your book, discover how to make a profit before the book is even printed as you learn how to set up local and national book signings, present seminars, and write press releases from 5 to 6:45 p.m.

The conference is $105 or $44 for a single session. To register, call 702-895-3394.

Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka to speak at BMI event

The Black Mountain Institute plans a presentation by Wole Soyinka, winner of the 1986 Nobel Prize for Literature, at 7 p.m. Feb. 12 in the student union at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, 4505 S. Maryland Parkway. Additional Black Mountain programs scheduled include a Nevada Emerging Writers Series featuring Leslie Jamison at 7 p.m. Feb. 19 in the Greenspun Hall auditorium at UNLV; Mustapha Marrouchi at 7 p.m. March 6 in the UNLV student union; and a conversation with BMI Fellows Criselda Yabes and Oksana Marafioti, moderated by Richard Wiley, at 7 p.m. April 10 in the UNLV student union. For more information, visit black mountaininstitute.org.

Henderson Writers Group meetings set

The Henderson Writers Group meets from 6:30 to 8:45 p.m. Mondays in room C-2 at Community Lutheran Church, 3720 E. Tropicana Ave. Meetings are typically canceled on holidays. Visit henderson writersgroup.com for more information.

Barnes & Noble to host writing group

The 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble hosts a writing critique group the fourth Monday of each month. The group is limited to the first 20 participants per meeting. Sign up at meetup.com/las-vegas-creative-writing-class.


The national StoryCorps’ Memory Loss Initiative encourages people with memory loss to share their stories with loved ones and future generations. To make that task easier, a free step-by-step toolkit is available to download at storycorps.org/mli.

The Commemorate toolkit offers an individual reminiscence program that family members can initiate or memory loss care facilities can add to activities.

The initiative has collected more than 1,800 interviews with 180 partner organizations.

For more information, visit storycorps.org or call 646-723-7027.


Too busy to get out to book programs? The Las Vegas-Clark County Library District has started posting videocasts and podcasts of many of its programs online. Selections available so far include: "An Afternoon with Tony Curtis," John L. Smith’s presentation "Amelia’s Long Journey: The Challenge of Writing What You Know," "Batman" movie producer Michael Uslan’s presentation at the 2009 Vegas Valley Comic Book Festival, Jami Carpenter’s "ABCs of Editing" workshop and Brian Rouff’s "Getting Published: A Long Strange Trip." To access the programs, visit lvccld.org, select "Books, Movies & More" and then "Video and Podcasts."

The Black Mountain Institute has offered recordings of its programming since 2006. To access recordings of a gamut of writers from E.L. Doctorow to Alissa Nutting, visit blackmountain institute.org and select "multimedia."


Celebrity storytellers Oscar Goodman, Rita Rudner, Clint Holmes, Terry Fator, Carrot Top, The Scintas and others have donated their talents to the Clark County Education Association Community Foundation’s Read To Me program. Children can view more than 15 videos of celebrities reading books on the website at readtomelv.com. Stories also can be accessed by calling 702-240-2665.

Both databases are frequently updated with fresh stories. Parents and teachers can download lesson plans for each book on the website.


Polish up a poem or two and try them out at Human Experience, a free spoken word event, from 7 to 9 p.m. Mondays in The Beat Coffeehouse inside Emergency Arts, 520 Fremont St. For details, visit lasvegaspoets.org.


Virtual Branch websites make it easy to browse, check out and download digital books and more to a home computer for free. All patrons need is a valid library card and an Internet-connected PC.

Virtual Branch download websites feature a digital catalog of downloadable audio books, e-books, music and video titles.

Each site is meant to look and feel like the library’s main site, and it has many easy-to-use features similar to an online store.

Digital book downloads are borrowed just like print materials. Once patrons select the title or author they want, they follow the steps to check out and then download the title to their home computer.

Patrons can transfer most titles to portable media players, such as MP3 players, PDAs, Kindles or smart phones.

Each title that is downloaded has a designated lending period. When the title expires, it is automatically returned to the Virtual Branch, so there are no late fees.

For more information, visit search.overdrive.com.


Grab a cup of coffee and check out the independently crafted magazines at the Las Vegas Zine Library inside The Beat Coffeehouse in Emergency Arts, 520 Fremont St.

The library is more of a collection on display for reference and on-site reading than a checkout repository. Contributions of zines are appreciated. For more information, visit lvzinelibrary.blogspot.com.

Memoir writing classes PLANNED

The University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Life Stories Nevada program plans free four-week memoir writing classes for seniors.

Instructors help would-be memoirists sort through their memories and organize how they want to tell their story. Sessions are slated for:

n 10:30 a.m. to noon Fridays through Jan. 25 at Merrill Gardens at Green Valley Ranch, 1935 Paseo Verde Parkway;

n 10 to 11:30 a.m. Fridays Feb. 1-22 at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Paradise campus, 851 E. Tropicana Ave.;

n 10:30 a.m. to noon Fridays March 8-29 at the Las Vegas FamilySearch Library, 509 S. Ninth St.;

n 10 to 11:30 a.m. Mondays April 8-29 at Temple Beth Sholom, 10700 Havenwood Lane;

n 10 to 11:30 a.m. Thursdays May 2-23 at the East Las Vegas Community/Senior Center, 250 N. Eastern Ave.

For more information, visit lifestoriesnevada.org. To register, contact Jean Norman at 702-940-5423 or norman@unce.unr.edu.

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