The Chicago Public Library (CPL) is holding several events connected to the Fall 2011 One Book, One Chicago selection, Saul Bellow’s The Adventures of Augie March, at the central library of the Chicago Public Library System, the Harold Washington Library Center (HWLC), located at 400 South State Street in downtown Chicago. Augie March is the 21st book in the One Book, One Chicago program, which is ten years old this autumn.
Those who want to participate in the “Chicago Neighborhood Tours: Augie March’s Chicago” should meet at 9:45 a.m. in the HWLC Grand Lobby (on the first floor) on Saturday, October 15, 2011. The tour itself will last between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
The CPL states, “Chicago comes alive through the eyes of Augie March, whether he’s swiping books from Carson Pirie’s or visiting the Reynolds Club in Hyde Park. This tour stops at various sites mentioned in the book, bringing to life some of the places Augie March would have lived and dreamed. Every person on the tour will receive a free copy of The Adventures of Augie March! However, please note that the tour does not include lunch; bringing a bag lunch is recommended. This tour is offered for a discounted price of $12.” Order tickets online: October 15 tour.
The Awards Reception for the Chicago Public Library Design Contest will be Tuesday, October 11, 2011 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in the Winter Garden on the 9th Floor of the HWLC. The deadline to enter the contest was September 11, 2011 and the People’s Choice Award on-line voting took place between September 19th and September 25th.
This is the third year that the CPL Design Contest has been held. This year, it celebrates the 10thanniversary of One Book, One Chicago. Beginning in August, the CPL challenged artists to create a special anniversary poster that embodies One Book, One Chicago.
Young Adult novelists John Green and Benjamin Alire Sáenz with critic Donna Seaman will speak in the HWLC’s Cindy Pritzker Auditorium on Monday, October 17, 2011, from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The CPL states, “We could not resist looking at Augie March, a character who spends so much effort and time questioning his purpose, through the lens of the today’s young adult fiction. John Green (Looking for Alaska, Paper Towns) and Benjamin Alire Sáenz (Sammy and Juliana in Hollywood, He Forgot to Say Goodbye) are experts in creating young characters who must endure their own self-questioning and “come of age” despite the largest hurdle of all—themselves. The authors are joined by Donna Seaman, book critic and a senior editor for Booklist. Seating is limited and registration is required.” To register, go to chicagopubliclibrary1b1c.eventbrite.com/ or call (312) 747-8191.
British novelist Martin Amis and Chicago Sun-Times publisher John Barron will speak in the HWLC’s Cindy Pritzker Auditorium on Tuesday, October 18, 2011, starting at 6:00 p.m. In October of 1995, British novelist Martin Amis wrote in The Atlantic Monthly that the publication of The Adventures of Augie March had marked the end of the search for the “great American novel.”
Amis described Saul Bellow’s magnum opus as being “without inhibition;” a novel that “bids farewell to exactitude, and to other constraints.” Amis, whose acclaimed fiction includes The Rachel Papers, London Fields, The Informationand, most recently, The Pregnant Widow, joins Sun-Times publisher John Barron in conversation about his respect for Augie March and his friendship with Bellow. Seating is limited and registration is required. To register, go to chicagopubliclibrary1b1c.eventbrite.com/ or call (312) 747-8191.
There is also a One Book, One Chicago program tie-in at the CPL’s YOUmedia centers. The Chicago Stories Teen Showcase will be on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. in the HWLC’s Cindy Pritzker Auditorium. This will be a “presentation of exciting and inspiring pieces about Chicago from students from YOUmedia” at the CPL and 826CHI.
The CPL offers “a series of programs that challenge teens to tell their own personal Chicago narratives. Working in a variety of mediums, including graphic design, photography, poetry, writing, radio, music, video and more, programs occur at all four YOUmedia locations.” The four locations are the Harold Washington Library Center, the Lozano Branch Library, the Thurgood Marshall Branch Library and the Richard M. Daley-West Humboldt Branch Library.
“Students who participate in these programs also have the opportunity to perform and present their pieces at the Chicago Stories Teen Showcase” on October 12, 2011. For more details about program times and locations, please visit youmediachicago.org.
Inspired by The Adventures of Augie March, Chicago high school and middle school students will present their original narratives set in Chicago in a showcase of prose, poetry and multi-media pieces. This is presented in partnership with826CHI.
The second of two World Travel Workshops will be held on Thursday, September 29, 2011, between 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. in the Video Theater on the Lower Level (basement) of the HWLC. For this program, members of Hostelling International Chicago “bring the faraway settings of two of our One Book, One Chicago selections to life.” The CSL states, “Tim O’Brien brought to life a war-torn Vietnam in The Things They Carried, our Fall 2003 selection. See how the country has evolved over the past few decades, gain insight into the many historic and cultural landmarks, and learn valuable travel tips to help you get around this beautiful country.”