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Pigeon Panel featuring Rosemary Mosco, Kathleen Rooney, and Matthew Gavin Frank

The Book Cellar is thrilled to be hosting a Pigeon Panel (yes, it's true), in honor of Rosemary Mosco's newest book, A Pocket Guide to Pigeon Watching: Getting to Know the World's Most Misunderstood Bird. The pigeon panel will feature Rosemary Mosco (A Pocket Guide to Pigeon Watching)Kathleen Rooney (Cher Ami and Major Whittlesey), and Matthew Gavin Frank (Flight of the Diamond Smuggler), and will do a deep dive into the wonderful world of pigeons!

A Pocket Guide to Pigeon Watching Book Cover  Rosemary Mosco Author Photo

Cher Ami and Major Whittlesey Book Cover  Kathleen Rooney Author Photo  Flight of the Diamond Smuggler Book Cover  Matthew Gavin Frank Author Photo

Event is free, but advance registration is required. Please email words@bookcellarinc.com with the subject line "Pigeon Panel" to reserve your spot! Access links will be sent day of, and all start times are for the US Central Standard Time.

About A Pocket Guide to Pigeon WatchingPart field guide, part history, part ornithology primer, and altogether fun. Fact: Pigeons are amazing, and until recently, humans adored them. We've kept them as pets, held pigeon beauty contests, raced them, used them to carry messages over battlefields, harvested their poop to fertilize our crops--and cooked them in gourmet dishes. Now, with The Pocket Guide to Pigeon Watching, readers can rediscover the wonder. Equal parts illustrated field guide and quirky history, it covers behavior: Why they coo; how they flock; how they preen, kiss, and mate (monogamously); and how they raise their young (on chunky pigeon milk). Anatomy and identification, from Birmingham Roller to the American Giant Runt to the Scandaroon. Birder issues, like what to do if you find a baby pigeon stranded in the park. And our lively shared story together, including all the things we've taught them--Ping-Pong, for example. "Rats with wings?" Think again. Pigeons coo, peck and nest all over the world, yet most of us treat them with indifference or disdain. So Rosemary Mosco, a bird-lover, science communicator, writer, and cartoonist (and co-author of The Atlas Obscura Explorer's Guide for the World's Most Adventurous Kid) is here to give the pigeon's image a makeover, and to help every town- and city-dweller get closer to nature by discovering the joys of birding through pigeon-watching. 

About Rosemary Mosco: Rosemary Mosco is a science communicator, acclaimed cartoonist, and speaker on all things bird. Her Bird and Moon nature comics were the subject of an award-winning museum exhibit and are collected in a book that’s a 2019 ALA Great Graphic Novel for Teens. She co-wrote The Atlas Obscura Explorer’s Guide for the World’s Most Adventurous Kid, a New York Times bestseller. She also writes for Audubon and the PBS kids’ show Elinor Wonders Why. Mosco is a beloved speaker at birding festivals. Past talks have included keynotes for the Rio Grande Birding Festival, the San Diego Bird Festival, the Great Salt Lake Bird Festival, and the Klamath Falls Winter Wings Festival, plus talks for Harvard’s Arnold Arboretum, Caveat NYC, Birds of Vermont Museum, Ithaca College, various birding clubs, and many others.

 

About Cher Ami and Major Whittlesey: A heart-tugging and gorgeously written novel based on the incredible true story of a WWI messenger pigeon and the soldiers whose lives she forever altered, from the author of Lillian Boxfish Takes a WalkFrom the green countryside of England and the gray canyons of Wall Street come two unlikely heroes: one a pigeon and the other a soldier. Answering the call to serve in the war to end all wars, neither Cher Ami, the messenger bird, nor Charles Whittlesey, the army officer, can anticipate how their lives will briefly intersect in a chaotic battle in the forests of France, where their wills will be tested, their fates will be shaped, and their lives will emerge forever altered.

A saga of hope and duty, love and endurance, as well as the claustrophobia of fame, Cher Ami and Major Whittlesey is a tragic yet life-affirming war story that the world has never heard. Inspired by true events of World War I, Kathleen Rooney resurrects two long-forgotten yet unforgettable figures, recounting their tale in a pair of voices that will change the way readers look at animals, freedom, and even history itself.

About Kathleen RooneyKathleen Rooney is the author, most recently, of the novels Cher Ami and Major Whittlesey and Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk, and the co-editor of René Magritte: Selected Writings. She is a founding editor of Rose Metal Press and a founding member of Poems While You Wait. Her previous work includes poetry, fiction, and nonfiction and has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Allure, Salon, The Chicago Tribune, The Nation and elsewhere. She teaches English and creative writing at DePaul University and lives in Chicago with her spouse, the writer Martin Seay.

 

About Flight of the Diamond Smugglers: A Tale of Pigeons, Obsession, and Greed Along Coastal South Africa: For nearly eighty years, a huge portion of coastal South Africa was closed off to the public. With many of its pits now deemed "overmined" and abandoned, American journalist Matthew Gavin Frank sets out across the infamous Diamond Coast to investigate an illicit trade that supplies a global market. Immediately, he became intrigued by the ingenious methods used in facilitating smuggling?particularly, the illegal act of sneaking carrier pigeons onto mine property, affixing diamonds to their feet, and sending them into the air.

Entering Die Sperrgebiet ("The Forbidden Zone") is like entering an eerie ghost town, but Frank is surprised by the number of people willing--even eager--to talk with him. Soon he meets Msizi, a young diamond digger, and his pigeon, Bartholomew, who helps him steal diamonds. It's a deadly game: pigeons are shot on sight by mine security, and Msizi knows of smugglers who have disappeared because of their crimes. For this, Msizi blames "Mr. Lester," an evil tall-tale figure of mythic proportions.

From the mining towns of Alexander Bay and Port Nolloth, through the "halfway" desert, to Kleinzee's shores littered with shipwrecks, Frank investigates a long overlooked story. Weaving interviews with local diamond miners who raise pigeons in secret with harrowing anecdotes from former heads of security, environmental managers, and vigilante pigeon hunters, Frank reveals how these feathered bandits became outlaws in every mining town.

About Matthew Gavin Frank: Matthew Gavin Frank is the author of The Mad Feast and Preparing the Ghost, which was reviewed on the front-page of the New York Times Book Review. He teaches creative writing and lives in Marquette, Michigan.
Event Address: 
Zoom (RSVP required)
Event Location: 
The Book Cellar
Event Start Time: 
Tuesday, November 16, 2021 - 7:00pm
Event Terms: 
Reading / Signing
Publish To Home Page: 
Publish

Paperback Fiction

Bedrock Faith
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Memorial
By: Washington, Bryan
Lying Life of Adults
By: Ferrante, Elena
Infinite Country
By: Engel, Patricia
You Feel It Just Below the Ribs
By: Matthewson, Janina
Hench
By: Walschots, Natalie Zina

Hardcover Non-Fiction

1000 Years of Joys and Sorrows
By: Ai Weiwei
Going There
By: Couric, Katie
Between the Lines
By: Beutter Cohen, Uli
David Copperfields History of Magic
By: Britland, David
Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity
By: Wengrow, David
Welcome to Dunder Mifflin
By: Silverman, Ben

Hardcover Fiction

Noor
Author: Okorafor, Nnedi
Little Hope
Author: Joella, Ethan
Chouette
Author: Oshetsky, Claire
Termination Shock
Author: Stephenson, Neal
Sentence
Author: Erdrich, Louise
All of Us Villains
Author: Herman, Christine Lynn