With Special Guest: Calvin Hennick, author of the forthcoming memoir “Once More to the Rodeo”
January 23, 2020 – 7pm
Porter Square Books
25 White Street
Calvin Hennick’s debut memoir, “Once More to the Rodeo” received the Pushcart Press Editors’ Book Award and was named one of the Best 100 Books of the Year by Amazon. His essays, fiction, and journalism have appeared in dozens of publications, including Yahoo Parenting, Parent & Child, Esquire, Runner’s World, Bellevue Literary Review, and The Boston Globe.
Five years into fatherhood, Calvin Hennick is plagued by self-doubt and full of questions. How can he teach his son to be a man, when his own father figures abandoned him? As a white man, what can he possibly teach his biracial son about how to live as a black man in America? And what does it even mean to be a man today, when society’s expectations of men seem to change from moment to moment?
In search of answers, Calvin takes his young son on the road, traveling across the country to the annual rodeo in his small Iowa hometown. Along the way, a stop at the Baseball Hall of Fame turns into an impromptu lesson about racism and segregation. In Niagara Falls, a day of arcade games and go-karts unexpectedly morphs into a titanic struggle between father and son. A stop in Chicago rips the scars off of old wounds. And back in Iowa, Calvin is forced to confront the most difficult question of all: What if his flaws and family history doom him to repeat the mistakes of the past?
In this unforgettable debut memoir, Hennick holds a mirror up to both himself and modern America, in an urgent and timely story that all parents, and indeed all Americans, need to read.
Sari Boren is an essayist and playwright who has published in Copper Nickel, Lilith Magazine, The Southeast Review, Alimentum, Hobart, and Pangyrus, among others. In 2019 her solo play Exhibiting premiered at the Newton Theatre Company and her short play To Rest premiered at the Somerville Theater Festival. Sari co-manages Boston’s Four Stories reading series and teaches creative nonfiction at Grub Street. Sari is also a museum exhibit developer and writer who’s worked on dozens of museum exhibits across the country.
Angie Chatman climbed the volunteer ladder at Fifth Wednesday Journal from fiction reader to Book Reviews Editor. She writes both fiction and creative non-fiction; her essays and short stories have appeared in Blood Orange Review, Hippocampus, fwriction:review, and elsewhere. Angie is a member of the inaugural class of Kimbilio fellows. She earned her MBA from the Sloan School at MIT, holds an MFA from Queens University in Charlotte.
Doris Iarovici is a writer and psychiatrist who was born in Romania and immigrated as a child to New York. Her fiction collection, “American Dreaming and Other Stories,” won the Novello Literary Award and other publishing honors. She’s been awarded the Crab Orchard Review’s Jack Dyer Prize, the Portland Review‘s Spring Fiction Prize, and a Pushcart nomination. She’s been a Fellow in writing at Djerassi Resident Artists Program, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Hambidge, Vermont Studio Center, and elsewhere. Her non-fiction book, “Mental Health Issues and the University Student” was published by Johns Hopkins University Press. Her essays, including a Modern Love column that also aired as a WBUR-podcast, have appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian, and elsewhere. She works part-time at Harvard University’s Counseling and Mental Health Services, and is at work on a memoir. She is also an alum of the Grub Street Memoir Generator.
Amy Yelin is an essayist and memoirist-in-progress whose works appears in The Gettysburg Review, The Missouri Review, The Writer’s Chronicle, Literary Mama, Brainchild Mag, Salon, and other publications, including two anthologies. She’s the recipient of two Pushcart nominations for “The Memoirist” (SweetLit) and “Taboo” (Pithead Chapel), and received a Best American Essays notable mention for “Torn” in The Best American Essays 2007. Her awards include a Sustainable Arts Foundation fellowship and a scholarship to the Norman Mailer Writer’s Colony. Amy is also a founding member of the Arlington Author Salon and assistant nonfiction editor for Solstice: A Magazine of Diverse Voices.