The Book Cellar
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Our monthly Local Author Night is back at The Book Cellar featuring authors Bill Kennedy, Mk Czerwiec, Penni Jones, and Charlie Donlea!
About Mk Czerwiec:
MK Czerwiec, RN, MA is a nurse who uses comics to contemplate the complexities of illness and caregiving. She is the Artist-in-Residence at Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine and a Senior Fellow of the George Washington School of Nursing Center for Health Policy & Media Engagement. MK has been making comics under the pseudonym Comic Nurse since 2000. She co-runs GraphicMedicine.org, a website devoted to the intersection of comics and health.
About Taking Turns Stories From HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371:
In 1994, at the height of the AIDS epidemic in the United States, MK Czerwiec took her first nursing job, at Illinois Masonic Medical Center in Chicago, as part of the caregiving staff of HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371. Taking Turns pulls back the curtain on life in the ward.
A shining example of excellence in the treatment and care of patients, Unit 371 was a community for thousands of patients and families affected by HIV and AIDS and the people who cared for them. This graphic novel combines Czerwiec's memories with the oral histories of patients, family members, and staff. It depicts life and death in the ward, the ways the unit affected and informed those who passed through it, and how many look back on their time there today. Czerwiec joined Unit 371 at a pivotal time in the history of AIDS: deaths from the syndrome in the Midwest peaked in 1995 and then dropped drastically in the following years, with the release of antiretroviral protease inhibitors. This positive turn of events led to a decline in patient populations and, ultimately, to the closure of Unit 371. Czerwiec's restrained, inviting drawing style and carefully considered narrative examine individual, institutional, and community responses to the AIDS epidemic--as well as the role that art can play in the grieving process.
Deeply personal yet made up of many voices, this history of daily life in a unique AIDS care unit is an open, honest look at suffering, grief, and hope among a community of medical professionals and patients at the heart of the epidemic.
About Penni Jones:
Penni Jones is a native Arkansan who currently lives in freezing cold Michigan. Penni has worked as a bartender, restaurant manager, bank teller, payroll specialist, event planner, and office manager. But she has always been a writer. She specializes in novels set in the Dirty Deep South. You can visit her blog at https://scapegoatsandsacredcows.com/
About On the Bricks:
Cass Blankenship was just released after spending ten years in prison for a murder she didn’t commit. All she really wants to do now is head for sunny California, a place where nobody knows she was convicted of killing her ex-boyfriend’s ex-wife. But, the terms of her parole have her released to live in her sister’s halfway house back home in Arkansas where she’s bunking with speed freaks and hookers.
Cass can get her parole transferred if she stays out of trouble, but trouble is all she seems to find. She can’t even go to the grocery store without running into someone who thinks she should still be in prison. It feels like her only choice is to enlist help from her hesitant but desperate parole officer to find the real killer and clear her name for good. But first she has to find her sister, who's probably taken off to do meth, then try to save Blankenship House from foreclosure, and help a teenaged felon deliver a baby, all while avoiding her ex and his Wrangler snake. And if her plan goes south, she’ll be back in the can by Labor Day
Charlie Donlea lives in Chicago with his wife and two young children. His first novel, Summit Lake, was a #1 Audible bestseller. The Girl Who Was Taken is his second novel, and he is under contract for two more thrillers due in 2018 and 2019. With so many choices of entertainment, and countless other books to choose from, he thanks you for spending your time and treasure on his novels.
The Girl Who Was Taken
Megan McDonald is a high school senior when she disappears from the small town of Emerson Bay. Hope for her safe return is nearly lost until, after two weeks held captive, she escapes from a bunker hidden deep in the woods.Now, one year later, the bestselling account of her ordeal – Missing – has turned Megan from local hero to national celebrity. It’s an inspiring story, except for one inconvenient detail. A second girl went missing that night. Her classmate, Nicole Cutty.Dr. Livia Cutty is a fellow in forensic pathology, training at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in North Carolina. Her sister, Nicole, has been missing a year when the body of a young man – an apparent suicide – shows up in the morgue and offers Livia the first clue to Nicole’s fate. Livia reaches out to Megan for help, hoping to learn more about the night the two were taken. Others girls have gone missing, and Livia is increasingly certain the cases are connected.But Megan is reluctant. She knows more than she has revealed. As flashes of memory continue to return, she realizes her blockbuster book is filled with lies, and that digging too deeply into the night she escaped from that bunker might reveal something darker and more monstrous than anything her chilling memoir describes.