Sunday, September 7, 2014

Lafayette Library fall book sale this week

            The Friends of the Lafayette Public Library fall book sale will be Wednesday through Saturday, Sept. 10-13, at the Heymann Convention Center Ballroom. The sale offers wonderful deals and the money supports the library system. If you are a member of the Friends of the Library you can attend the first night of the sale (for Friends only) on Wednesday, Sept. 10. It’s such a deal — $5 a year! And you can join the night of the sale. For more information, visit Also, check out the Silent Auction at the South Regional Library, where you can bid on high quality books. Bidding ends Sept. 26.

Clash of Titans
            The Special Collection Services at UL’s Dupré Library continues a series of lectures in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War. Dr. Harry Laver, professor and graduate coordinator in the History Department at Southeastern will speak on “The Clash of Titans: Robert E. Lee vs. Ulysses S. Grant” at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 9, in the third floor hall outside the Ernest J. Gaines Center. Laver is a recent Fulbright Scholar whose fields of study include the American Civil War and military leadership. A question and answer session will follow the lecture. The free event is supported by Gilda Lehrman Institute of American History and is open to the public. For more information, contact Bruce Turner, assistant dean of Special Collection Services, at; 482-5702.

Gaines deadline
            Oct. 1 is the deadline for entries to the eighth annual Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence. Sponsored by the donors of the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, the award honors outstanding fiction from rising African-American writers and includes a $10,000 cash prize. The award is named in honor of Pointe Coupee Parish native Gaines, a nationally acclaimed fiction writer and creative writing instructor at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Information on submission criteria and entry forms for the award are available at
            The most recent winner is Attica Locke for her novel "The Cutting Season." Previous winners include Stephanie Powell Watts for "We Are Taking Only What We Need," Dinaw Mengestu, who was selected as a MacArthur Fellow in 2012, for "How to Read the Air" and Victor LaValle for "Big Machine."
            Gaines' critically acclaimed novel, "The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman," was adapted into a 1974 made-for-TV movie that won nine Emmy awards. "A Lesson Before Dying," published in 1993, won the National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction. This year marks the 50th anniversary of Gaines first novel, Catherine Carmier.

Book events
            The Center for Louisiana Studies’ Bayou State Book Talks presents Jason Theriot, author of “American Energy, Imperiled Coast: Oil and Gas Development inLouisiana’s Wetlands” at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the South Regional Branch Library, 6101 Johnston St. The event is free and open to the public.
            Keith Weldon Medley, author of “We as Freeman: Plessy v. Ferguson” and the upcoming “Black Life in Old New Orleans,” will be giving a presentation at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Hubbell Library in Algiers Point, New Orleans.
            Nicholas Meis, author of “New Orleans Hurricanes From the Start,” will be signing books and lecturing from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Jefferson Parish East Regional Library, 4747 Napoleon Ave. in Metairie.
            Sherry Lee Alexander leads a panel discussion with co-authors Alfred Lawrence Lorenz and Vicki Mayer in connection with their new book, “The Times-Picayune in aChanging Media World” at 6 p.m. Thursday at Garden District Book Shop in New Orleans. The book is a study of the 2012-2013 transition of The Times-Picayune of New Orleans from a daily newspaper to a three-day-a-week publication with emphasis on its online edition.

Cheré Coen is the author of “Haunted Lafayette, Louisiana” and “Exploring Cajun Country: A Historic Guide to Acadiana,” both from The History Press, and co-author of “Magic’s in the Bag: Creating Spellbinding Gris Gris Bags and Sachets.” Her next book is “Forest Hill, Louisiana: A Bloom Town History.” Write her at