A quick look at ‘Letters from My Father’s Murderer’

41IXeTQc8qL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_Letters from My Father’s Murderer: A Journey of Forgiveness by Laurie A. Coombs

Genre: Memoir, Christian

My Synopsis: A Nevada woman comes to believe she should forgive the man who murdered her father and corresponds with him.

Publisher: Kregel Digital Editions

Format and Number of Pages: E-book, 232 pages

Where to Find: Amazon

How Much Read: 37%

Comments: I really wanted to read the letters, but by the time I’d read more than a third of the book, I’d seen only a couple of them. Most of it up to that point was about the author’s soul searching and the development of her religious beliefs.

UNR professor to present first biography of ‘Pimp’ author Iceberg Slim

From a Sundance Books and Music news release

street poisonJustin Gifford will present his new book, Street Poison: The Biography of Iceberg Slim (Penguin Random House, 2015), from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 27, at Sundance Books and Music.

The book is the first and a definitive biography of one of America’s bestselling and most notorious and influential writers of the twentieth century: Iceberg Slim, né Robert Beck. Beck was author of the multimillion-copy memoir Pimp and such equally popular novels as Trick Baby and Mama Black Widow. From a career as a, yes, ruthless pimp in the ’40s and ’50s, Iceberg Slim refashioned himself as the first and still the greatest of “street lit” masters.

Beck’s vivid books have made him an icon to such rappers as Ice-T, Jay-Z and Snoop Dogg and a presiding spirit of “blaxploitation” culture. You can’t understand contemporary black (and even American) culture without reckoning with Iceberg Slim and his many acolytes and imitators.

Gifford, an associate professor of English literature at UNR, has been researching the life and work of Robert Beck for a decade, culminating in Street Poison. Drawing on a wealth of archival material—including FBI files, prison records and interviews with Beck, his wife and his daughters—Gifford explores the sexual trauma and racial violence Beck endured that led to his reinvention as Iceberg Slim. Gifford’s biography illuminates the life and works of one of American literature’s most unique renegades from pimping to penning his profoundly influential confessional autobiography, Pimp, to his involvement in radical politics.

Gifford’s teaching and research focus on American and African American literature. His previous book, the first literary and cultural history of black street fiction, Pimping Fictions: African American Crime Literature and the Untold Story of Black Pulp Publishing, was a finalist for both the Edgar Allan Poe award for literary criticism and Phi Beta Kappa’s Christian Gauss Award for scholarship.

Learn more at www.sundancebookstore.com/gifford.

Local paranormal historian to present new book

From a Sundance Books and Music news release

9453-GHOS-cvr.inddIndependent historian Janice Oberding will read from and sign her new book, Ghosts of Goldfield and Tonopah, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 18, at Sundance Books and Music.

About the book
Echoes of prospectors, forlorn widows and politicians linger in the streets and historic remnants of Nevada’s former boomtowns. In the throes of early financial disaster, the Silver State had little to entice newcomers or discourage residents from leaving. Jim Butler’s silver discovery at Tonopah changed everything. With a subsequent gold discovery near Goldfield, the rush was on, and from these burgeoning mines, Nevada’s early leaders amassed their wealth and power.

Oberding, a paranormal historian, shares firsthand accounts of ghostly encounters in the Goldfield and Mizpah hotels and uncovers the histories behind the mysterious cowboy ghost, the haggard hitchhiker and other eerie local tales.The book is the newest addition to The History Press Haunted America series.

About the author
Oberding is a past docent of the Nevada Historical Society and Fourth Ward School Museum in Virginia City. The author of numerous books on Nevada’s history, true crime, and unusual occurrences and hauntings, she speaks on these subjects throughout the state. She also teaches the popular courses Ghosthunting 101 and Nevada’s Quirky Historical Facts for the community education program at Truckee Meadows Community College.

Learn more at sundancebookstore.com/oberding.