Strong Canadian dollar good for book lovers

Calgary booksellers lower prices readings and more

Congrats thrifty book-lover — Pages has your back. You may have noticed that despite the Canadian dollar’s recent rise those pesky American prices on the book-jackets are still dirt cheap. Starting immediately Pages Books on Kensington (1135 Kensington Rd. N.W.) offers customers the chance to snag imported titles at the American price tag with crisp Canadian bills. Other bookstores like Owl’s Nest and McNally Robinson are also responding by lowering prices on some books.

John Lent is a poet novelist jazz musician and since 1980 a creative writing professor at the new Okanagan College. He visits the University of Calgary this week to share his extensive experiences in pedagogy in a lecture entitled “A Life in Teaching Writing.” He speaks in Social Sciences room 1155 on November 15 7 p.m.

Journalist Jan Wong spent six years in Beijing as a Globe and Mail correspondent but before that she was one of only two westerners to study at Beijing University and as a student refused to help a young Chinese woman escape to the United States. In Beijing Confidential Wong returns to Beijing to track down her past. Check out a reading and a live interview with Wong and Catherine Ford at the Memorial Park Library (1221 2 St. S.W.) on November 15 7 p.m.

Thursday’s a busy night but the last candidate requires little introduction. Hunker down with some prime rib as Margaret Atwood discusses humanity’s future at a catered lecture in the University of Calgary’s MacEwan Hall November 15 at 7 p.m. Tickets $53 at Ticketmaster.

In 2006 Globe and Mail reporter Christie Blanchford made three trips to Afghanistan spending hours in interviews with Canadian soldiers. Her new book Fifteen Days: Stories of Bravery Friendship Life and Death from Inside the New Canadian Army delves into the soldiers’ stories of 21st century warfare. She reads at McNally Robinson on November 21 6 p.m.

Eleventh Transmission has just churned out its 11th issue at www.eleventhtransmission.org — a momentous occasion that’s complemented with the launch of its brand-new open mic series Passion Pitch Poetry. Every month Kirk Ramdath hosts eager performers in a night of poetic exuberance. The first event features the talents of Möe Clark and… well you! Join the action at the Oolong Tea House (110 10 St. N.W.) on November 21 8 p.m.

Sick of routine? David Peyto’s new book Discover Southeast Calgary’s Parks and Green Spaces explores the undiscovered landscape of the city’s southeast. Learn about river paths and viewpoints at McNally Robinson on November 22 noon.

Möe Clark is a busy poet this week as she leaps from Passion Pitch to Single Onion. In the latest instalment of this long-running series Clark joins readers Bert Almon and Paul Marshall and musician Peter Willis . The Onions try out a new location this month: The New Gallery in Eau Claire Market November 22 at 7 p.m.

Residential schools have long been condemned as a leading eraser of aboriginal culture but in his new book Sam McKegney delves deep into the schools’ repercussions by closely analyzing the life writings they inspired. Magic Weapons: Aboriginal Writers Remaking Community After Residential Schools looks at writers’ ability to rebuild a shattered community. Join McKegney at McNally Robinson on November 22 7 p.m.

In 2007 the Calgary International Spoken Word Festival presented the first annual Golden Beret Award to Murdoch Burnett . Now they’re looking for nominations: spoken word artists who have contributed to the discipline and the community through hard work and innovation. To make a nomination visit www.calgaryspokenwordfestival.com or call 686-4292.