Booked Up

New Column Explores Books, Author Readings & More

Our new column, Booked Up, explores a variety of books, author readings and more.

By - Dec 6th, 2013 11:44 am
Good Stock: Life on a Low Simmer

Good Stock: Life on a Low Simmer

“Books form the memory of the world.”  I just made that up, but I truly believe it.  Those dusty volumes taking up space on your shelves are unique parts of our collective brain. Your reading experience may be digital or audio, but we are all enjoying the complex process of mind-melding over time and space.  When I was asked to share my passion for books, I wanted to start here, with the book-brain continuum.  We are all the sum of the pages that have passed through our minds.

I would like to help guide you through the myriad of reading choices you have today.  I also want you to guide me. I have always relied on the book trails of strangers, like crumbs left to guide me through the literary forest.  Hopefully, as the weeks go by, we will become familiar enough that we can recommend books to each other we would never otherwise have read.  That is true book friendship.

As we approach the end of the year, I must make the spirited plea that you give books as gifts.  A well-chosen book can be one of the most satisfying and intimate of presents. Unfortunately, you need a good bookstore to help you make the perfect choice, unless Uncle Louie has his wish list online.  And more unfortunately, bookstores are getting harder to find.  That’s why I urge you in these last days of the year to visit your nearest book shop and talk to the knowledgeable staff about the perfect tome for Uncle Louie (and everyone else).

In the weeks ahead, I will suggest the perfect books to give and get, whatever the occasion.  I am relying on you to do the same.  I’m all booked up and I want you to be, too!  I will talk about author readings, local writers, book stores and the entire books scene. So please send me your ideas, likes and dislikes; I hope to share your ideas often. One last thought:  If you know any kids, give them books that will change their lives this holiday.

And here are a few of the December area Book Events that may appeal to your literary hankerings or may just help you find that perfect volume for holiday giving:

Monday, December 9 (7:00 PM):  The Outwords Men’s Book Club  will discuss Tim Teeman’s surely controversial biography, In Bed with Gore Vidal at Outwords Books, Gifts & Coffee, 2710 N. Murray Ave., Milwaukee. (414) 963-9089

Monday, December 9 (7:00 PM): Paul Bialas talks about his new art book, Schlitz Brewing Art, with special guest Peter T. Uihlein at Boswell Book Company, 2559 N. Downer Ave., Milwaukee. (414) 332-1181

Tuesday, December 10 (6:30 PM) Paul Bialas speaks again at Barnes & Noble Booksellers, Mayfair Mall, 2500 N. Mayfair Rd., Suite 196, Wauwatosa. (414) 475-6070

Wednesday, December 11 (6:30 PM) The December Book Club discusses The News from Spain by Joan Wickersham at The Little Read Book Store, 7603 W. State St., Wauwatosa. (414) 774-2665

Thursday, December 12 (4:00 PM) The December Book Discussion Groups for Tweens and Teens at the Oak Creek Library, Oak Creek.

Saturday, December 14 (1:00 PM): Author Tom Pilarzyk will be signing his new book, Milwaukee at the Water’s Edge at Bayshore Town Center, Glendale.

Saturday, December 14 (1:00 PM): Tosa’s All-City Read and Kickoff Bookfair at Barnes & Noble Booksellers, Mayfair Mall, 2500 N. Mayfair Rd., Suite 196, Wauwatosa. (414) 475-6070

Tuesday December 17 (7:00 PM): Chef Sandy D’Amato talks about his memoir, Good Stock: Life on a Low Simmer at Boswell Book Company, 2559 N. Downer Ave., Milwaukee. (414) 332-1181

  • The James Beard Award-winner is a hometown boy sure to entertain with his tales of growing up over his parents’ East-Side grocery store.  His rise to national fame as a chef is only part of the story in this warm and engrossing autobiography.  If you’re a foodie or just love to eat, mark this down as your must-see book event of December.

Thursday, December 19 (6:00 PM): Chef Sandy D’Amato appears at a Very Merry Spice House Event at The Spice House, 1031 North Old World Third Street,  Milwaukee.  The chef will be talking about his memoirs and serving appetizers from the book.  (414) 272-0977

Send your book club picks and author event information to me at  And good reading!

0 thoughts on “Booked Up: New Column Explores Books, Author Readings & More”

  1. Anonymous says:

    If anyone knows books, it’s Will Stotts!
    I look forward to more recommendations.
    However, who is Uncle Louie?

  2. Anonymous says:

    I thought he was your uncle, Betsy!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Great new column! A good idea to have book signings, readings, library events all in one place – and of course, without books, would we even have history?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Thanks, Christina! Keep us posted on events and new books you’d recommend.

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