Book notes

Area readings

  • To help celebrate National Poetry Month, Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones), writer and advocate of black culture and political activism, will speak at 7 p.m. Thursday at Pierson Auditorium, 50th Street and Rockhill Road, at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Widely celebrated as the father of the Black Arts movement and criticized for his political frankness, Baraka became nationally prominent in 1964, with the New York production of his Obie Award-winning play, "Dutchman."

Baraka's lecture is part of a series of poetry and book discussion circles sponsored by "Speaking of Rivers: Taking Poetry to the People," the Langston Hughes National Poetry Project at Kansas University. The national project is funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and is directed by Maryemma Graham, KU professor of English.

Baraka's lecture is free, but reservations are requested. Call (816) 235-6222.

  • A Riverfront Reading at 8 p.m. Friday will feature readers for Boulevard, a literary journal from which pieces are frequently selected to reprint in such anthologies as "The Best American Poetry," "The Best American Short Stories" and "The Pushcart Prize."

The reading will be at The Writers Place, 3607 Pennsylvania, Kansas City, Mo. On the schedule are: Richard Burgin, editor of Boulevard, and a fiction writer, composer, critic and professor of communications and English at St. Louis University; Maija Rhee Devine, winner of Boulevard's 2002 Emerging Writers Award in Fiction, who writes fiction, poetry and creative nonfiction; and Phyllis G. Westover, winner of Boulevard's 2003 Emerging Writers Award in Fiction, who writes fiction, creative nonfiction, reviews and documentary films.

Cost is $3 for Writers Place members and $5 for nonmembers.

'Star Trek' authors to appear at Oread Books

A team of "Star Trek" book writers will sign books from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Oread Books in the Kansas Union.

The writers are Kevin Dilmore, a 1988 Kansas University journalism graduate from Prairie Village, and co-author Dayton Ward, of Kansas City.

The event, part of Oread Books' local authors series, is free and open to the public.

It will feature three new novels published in 2004 by Pocket Books: the first full-length "Starfleet Corps of Engineers" title, "Foundations," and two "Star Trek: The Next Generation" titles, "A Time to Sow" and "A Time to Harvest."

Noted travel journalist to appear at Oread Books

Thomas Swick, travel journalist and author of "A Way to See the World: From Texas to Transylvania with a Maverick Traveler" will sign books from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday at Oread Books in the Kansas Union.

He will read from his latest book from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Max Kade Center, 1132 W. 11th St.

Swick has been the travel editor of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel since 1989. His essays have appeared in The Best American Travel Writing anthologies. He is the author of the travel memoir "Unquiet Days: At Home in Poland."

For more information, call Alison Watkins in the Office of International Programs at 864-6161.


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