September 20th at 5:00pm. Laura Pope Becoming Portsmouth at the Portsmouth Public Library.
PLEASE NOTE THIS EVENT IS NOT AT THE BOOKSTORE.
The library’s Local History series features authors and experts on local history topics. The series continues in September with a very special book launch of Becoming Portsmouth, edited by Laura Pope. Meet the contributing authors, discuss their first person essays about Portsmouth history, and enjoy refreshments!
At midcentury, two federal urban renewal projects in the gritty, blue-collar navy town of Portsmouth decimated two neighborhoods. But in the 1970s and ’80s—thanks to an influx of artisans, chefs and entrepreneurs—the Port City emerged as a beacon of arts, culinary excellence and preservation. Iconoclast Jay Smith opened the Press Room, the celebrated music club. A group of concerned citizens saved the Music Hall, the last of Portsmouth’s vaudeville theaters. And a Dutch family opened the Euro-style Café Petronella next to a biker bar.
In Becoming Portsmouth, author and historian Laura Pope has edited a collection of essays detailing the changes in the last half of the past century that made Portsmouth a lauded arts- and food-lovers’ hub and, finally, a diverse tourist destination.
After a brief profession as an archaeologist and stints in the restaurant trade, Laura Pope began her writing career at New Hampshire Profiles magazine. She later worked as a staff and freelance journalist and editor specializing in the arts, travel and history for regional newspapers and magazines, including National Geographic Traveler, the Montreal Gazette and Old House Journal. Laura’s first book, a work of history called Portsmouth (2007), was followed by Portsmouth Women (2013, The History Press), an anthology of women’s history spanning three centuries.
September 25th at 6:30pm Jim Curtis The Stimulati Experience: 9 Skills for Getting Past Pain, Setbacks, and Trauma to Ignite Health and Happiness
For more than 20 years, Jim Curtis has battled a mysterious chronic illness. He grew accustomed to living in pain, denial, and despair. But when traditional medical therapies didn’t help, he sought answers elsewhere. He traveled the world and met a group of extraordinary people he calls The Stimulati—and what he learned from them ultimately changed his life.
In The Stimulati Experience, Jim outlines his own incredible journey, as well as his step-by-step program to overcome pain, setback, and struggle to transform your life into one filled with better health, freedom, joy, strength, and purpose. Whether you suffer from a chronic illness, anxiety, or depression, you’ll learn how to achieve better health and an abundance of happiness. Featuring a motivational and inspiring foreword by New York Times bestselling author Gabrielle Bernstein, The Stimulati Experience distills Jim’s unique nine-step program created from his own personal experience, The Stimulati themselves, and lessons he has learned from creating the world’s leading digital health platforms.
Using grounded scientific research, practical takeaways, insightful evaluations, and his own personal stories, Jim takes you on a journey of self-discovery so that you can radically improve your life. The Stimulati Experience is your ultimate guide to optimal health of the body and mind.
Jim Curtis is the President and Chief Strategy Officer at Remedy Health Media, the third largest digital health platform, which provides integral health advice to millions every year. Jim was also a key leader in developing WebMD and Everyday Health, the top two national health sites. He is the recipient of PharmaVoice’s Top 100 Most Inspirational in Health three years in a row, as well as the PM360’s Elite Disrupter Aware and MM&M’s Rising Star Award. Jim is a public speaker, storyteller, and business coach. He is a graduate of the Whittemore School of Business at the University of New Hampshire. He lives in New York, NY.
September 27th at 7pm After Hours Poetry
Our series returns after summer hiatus. Join us and bring a poem to read. Details to come.
September 29th at 7pm Jarret Middleton: Darkansas
Jarret Middleton is the author of Darkansas and the novella, An Dantomine Eerly. He was the founding editor of Dark Coast Press and the classics library Pharos Editions, an imprint of Counterpoint/Soft Skull Press. His fiction, essays, and reviews have appeared in Shelf Awareness, The Quarterly Conversation, The Weeklings, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, The Collagist, SmokeLong Quarterly, and HTMLGIANT, as well as appearing in the print anthologies The Breadline Anthology; Hotel Angeline: A Novel in 36 Voices; and In Heaven, Everything is Fine: Fiction Inspired by David Lynch. He lives in Seattle, WA with his wife.
About the novel: Jordan is a country musician living in the shadow of his father, bluegrass legend Walker Bayne. A man who has made a lifetime of poor decisions, Jordan bounces between dive bars, accruing women and drinking himself to the brink of disaster.
When he returns home to the Ozarks for his twin brother’s wedding, Jordan uncovers a dark vein in the Bayne family history: going back to the end of the Civil War, every generation of Bayne men have been twins―and one twin has always murdered their father.
As old tensions resurface and Jordan searches for a way to escape his family’s legacy, a mysterious hill dweller and his grotesque partner stalk the brothers’ every move, determined to see the curse through to its end. Praised by Donald Ray Pollock as “one of the best debuts of the year,” Middleton establishes himself as a novelist in good company with Brian Panowich and Smith Henderson, yet in a category all his own.
October 10th at 6:30pm Howard Mansfield Summer Over Autumn
Howard Mansfield is one of our favorites, and every book from him is something new and unexpected. Mansfield’s new book Summer Over Autumn is a small book of small-town life. He has written twenty-one short essays over the last thirty years, stories about neighbors, animals, tractors, trees, yard sales, funerals, money, and fidelity to time itself. It’s a book about the crooked path that is New Hampshire, about the parts that are postcard pretty, and the rougher parts that have a kind of hidden grace you have to live with to really see.
He doesn’t waste time with the “quaint postcard” view of a New England town, but shows readers where the real merit of small-town life lies. It can be found in the war waged against invasive, wild rosebushes, the hopeful placing of bets in the elm tree lottery, the artful dance of fundraising, and in bribing the band to play longer at the mechanic’s anniversary party. He brings us the hidden stories in one chair, a conversation in passing, or a Fourth of July fireworks display. Like Hancock’s crooked Main Street, the town and these stories are not just there for reminiscing; they are a “breathing lesson.”
Howard Mansfield is an everyday tourist and detective of the nearby. His ability to fully immerse himself in the here rather than rushing on towards there, has helped him create the wonderful essays in this small book full of big ideas.
October 21st at 11am Scott Nash, Children’s Author and Illustrator
Scott Nash will be here to draw for you and tell stories! His latest work is the illustrations for a book called I’m Afraid Your Teddy Is In Trouble Today. Scott is also well-known for his illustrations for the Flat Stanley books.
In 2004, Scott made his debut as author-illustrator with the publication of Tuff Fluff: The Case of Duckie’s Missing Brain, one of our all-time favorite books. He also created an illustrated novel called The High Skies Adventures of Blue Jay The Pirate. Scott has lectured widely and taught at Boston University, Northeastern University, and the Art Institute of Boston. He helped establish and is the chair of the illustration department at the Maine College of Art. Scott is a graduate of the Swain School of Design and holds a master’s in Graphic Design from Cranbrook Academy of Art. He lives with his wife, collage artist and illustrator Nancy Gibson-Nash, and their dog, Zephyr, on what he calls “a floating chunk of Portland” called Peaks Island, Maine.
October 23rd at 6:30pm Thomas Moore Ageless Soul
Thomas Moore is the renowned author of Care of the Soul, the classic #1 New York Times bestseller. In Ageless Soul, Moore reveals a fresh, optimistic, and rewarding path toward aging, one that need not be feared, but rather embraced and cherished. In Moore’s view, aging is the process by which one becomes a more distinctive, complex, fulfilled, loving, and connected person.
Using examples from his practice as a psychotherapist and teacher who lectures widely on the soul of medicine and spirituality, Moore argues for a new vision of aging: as a dramatic series of initiations, rather than a diminishing experience, one that each of us has the tools–experience, maturity, fulfillment–to live out. Subjects include:
*Why melancholy is a natural part of aging, and how to accept it, rather than confuse it with depression
*The vital role of the elder and mentor in the lives of younger people
*The many paths of spiritual growth and learning that open later in life
*Sex and sensuality
*Building new communities and leaving a legacy
Ageless Soul will teach readers how to embrace the richness of experience and how to take life on, accept invitations to new vitality, and feel fulfilled as they get older.
October 29th at 5:00 pm Alexander ter Weele We Escaped: A Family’s Flight from Holland During WWII
The song and dance of The Sound of Music… seasoned with the terror of war. We Escaped plunges the reader into the extraordinary World War II escapades of an ordinary couple and their children as they first escape from Nazi-occupied Holland; and then deal with the war years by leavening danger and stress with the joy and love of everyday family life.
The story begins in the Netherlands, a peaceful nation protected by a treaty of neutrality and kinship with Hitler’s Germany. The calm is shattered by the cacophony and confusion of battle as, under the guns of panzers, German troops overrun Holland’s lines. The ter Weele family’s subsequent exodus from their home is told from the points of view of the father, Lieutenant Carl ter Weele, a Dutch reservist called up to defend the Grebbeberg; his wife Margery, an American citizen raised in Boston, who delivers her third child in a hospital not far from the Grebbeberg as war threatens; their oldest son, six-year-old Jan, whose dark eyes and hair lead Nazis to suspect he is Jewish; and their second son, Alex, a blond and fair-skinned imp, who at the age of two charms a German border guard into allowing the family to cross into Switzerland.
Within weeks of Germany’s conquest of Holland, the family has to flee the dragnet of the Gestapo, which is arresting all Dutch military officers. As far as Carl can see, the only way out is through Germany, and from there it’s a tortuous and terrifying journey through Switzerland, Vichy France, Spain, and Portugal, with the Gestapo a threat at every turn.
Alexander ter Weele is also the author of Poems from the Blue Ridge.