David Giffels, author of Barnstorming Ohio, will do a virtual event on Thursday, October 29th at 7 p.m. This is sponsored by Brews & Prose, the terrific reading series at
Market Garden Brewery that hasn't happened this season because of Covid. Stay tuned for virtual format information/registration.
David will be talking about Barnstorming Ohio, a thoughtful and literary take on Ohio's social and political landscape. This is a good election year guide into what Ohioans are thinking.
"The question of America's identity has rarely been more urgent than now, and no American place has ever been more reflective of that identity than Ohio. David Giffels, a lifelong resident of the "bellwether" state, has spent a quarter century writing and thinking about what it means to live in what he calls "an all-American buffet, an uncannily complete everyplace." With Cleveland as the end of the North, Cincinnati as the beginning of the South, Youngstown as the end of the East, and Hicksville (yes, Hicksville) as the beginning of the Midwest, Ohio offers important insight into the state of the nation."
"An engaging compendium of personal narrative and memoir, travelogue, ethnography, and vignettes that serve as evidence of the state's national significance. In a way, it is a tortured love letter, waxing poetic about the place and its people, and tearfully hashing over the ways things have gone wrong. It is also a white paper of sorts, arguing for greater attentiveness to this "bellwether" state, one with a knack for predicting presidential wins and acting as a canary in the coal mine for broader misalignments, divisive politics, festering social problems, and public health emergencies, from the opioid crisis to COVID-19. Giffels' gift with language, his astuteness as a social observer and analyst, and his deep connection to the people of Ohio makes this a highly engaging and worthwhile read."-- Booklist
David Giffels is the author of five books, and two-time winner of the Ohioana Book Award. His critically acclaimed memoir, Furnishing Eternity: A Father, a Son, a Coffin, and a Measure of Life, was hailed by the New York Times Book Review as "tender, witty and . . . painstakingly and subtly wrought," and picked as a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice. His previous books include The Hard Way on Purpose: Essays and Dispatches from the Rust Belt, also a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice, and nominee for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay, and the memoir All the Way Home (William Morrow/HarperCollins).
Giffels is the coauthor, with Jade Dellinger, of the rock biography Are We Not Men? We Are Devo! and, with Steve Love, Wheels of Fortune: The Story of Rubber in Akron. A former columnist for the Akron Beacon Journal, Giffels's writing has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, the Atlantic, Parade, the Iowa Review, the Wall Street Journal, Esquire, Grantland, and many other publications. He also was a writer for the MTV series Beavis and Butt-Head. He is a professor of English at the University of Akron, where he teaches creative nonfiction in the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts program.