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Author Event/Curiosity Forum: Jon Katz with new book, Saving Simon (10/07/2014) at Battenkill Books

10/07/2014 7:00 pm at Battenkill Books, 15 East Main Street, Cambridge, NY 12816   Please join us for the official book launch of Jon Katz’s new book Saving Simon: How

Author Event/Curiosity Forum: Jon Katz with new book, Saving Simon (10/07/2014) at Battenkill Books

10/07/2014 7:00 pm


Battenkill Books, 15 East Main Street, Cambridge, NY 12816


Please join us for the official book launch of Jon Katz’s new book Saving Simon: How a Rescue Donkey Taught Me the Meaning of Compassion. In this heartfelt, thoughtful, and inspiring memoir, “New York Times” bestselling author Jon Katz tells the story of his beloved rescue donkey, Simon, and the wondrous ways that animals make us wiser and kinder people. 
In the spring of 2011, Jon Katz received a phone call that would challenge every idea he ever had about mercy and compassion. An animal control officer had found a neglected donkey on a farm in upstate New York, and she hoped that Jon and his wife, Maria, would be willing to adopt him. Jon wasn’t planning to add another animal to his home on Bedlam Farm, certainly not a very sick donkey. But the moment he saw the wrenching sight of Simon, he felt a powerful connection. Simon touched something very deep inside of him. Jon and Maria decided to take him in. 

Simon’s recovery was far from easy. Weak and malnourished, he needed near constant care, but Jon was determined to help him heal. As Simon’s health improved, Jon would feed him by hand, read to him, take him on walks, even confide in him like an old and trusted friend. Then, miraculously, as if in reciprocation, Simon began to reveal to Jon the true meaning of compassion, the ways in which it can transform our lives and inspire us to take great risks. 

This radically different perspective on kindness and empathy led Jon to a troubled border collie from Ireland in need of a home, a blind pony who had lived outside in a pasture for fifteen years, and a new farm for him and Maria. In the great tradition of heroes–from Don Quixote to Shrek–who faced the world in the company of their donkeys, Jon came to understand compassion and mercy in a new light, learning to open up “not just to [Simon], not just to animals, but to the human experience. To love, to risk, to friendship.” 
With grace, warmth, and keen emotional insight, “Saving Simon” plumbs the depths of bonds we form with our animals, and the rewards of “living a more compassionate, considered, and meaningful life.” 

Praise for Jon Katz 

“With wisdom and grace, Katz unlocks the canine soul and the complicated wonders that lie within and offers powerful insights to anyone who has ever struggled with, and loved, a troubled animal.”–John Grogan, author of “Marley & Me” 

“Katz’s world–of animals and humans and their combined generosity of spirit–is a place you’re glad you’ve been.”–”The Boston Globe” 

“From Toto to Marley, our canine friends are a sure bet in the literary biz. But no one seems to speak their language like Jon Katz.”–”San Antonio Express-News” 

“Katz proves himself a Thoreau for modern times as he ponders the relationships between man and animals, humanity and nature.”–”Fort Worth Star-Telegram” 

“I toss a lifetime award of three liver snaps to Jon Katz.”–Maureen Corrigan, National Public Radio’s “Fresh Air” 

To order a signed copy of Jon’s new book, see below.

And for a complete list of Jon’s signed book available for purchase, click here.  

Book List

Author Event: James Howard Kunstler with his new book The History of the Future: A World Made by Hand Novel


Friday, Sept. 12
7:00 pm

Battenkill Books


Please join us for a reading, talk, and signing with author James Howard Kunstler, who will be sharing his new book, The History of the Future: A World Made by Hand  – Novel.

“A History of the Future” is the third thrilling novel in Kunstler’s “World Made By Hand” series, an exploration of family and morality as played out in the small town of Union Grove.

Following the catastrophes of the twenty-first century–the pandemics, the environmental disaster, the end of oil, the ensuing chaos–people are doing whatever they can to get by and pursuing a simpler and sometimes happier existence. In little Union Grove in upstate New York, the townspeople are preparing for Christmas. Without the consumerist shopping frenzy that dogged the holidays of the previous age, the season has become a time to focus on family and loved ones. It is a stormy Christmas Eve when Robert Earle’s son Daniel arrives back from his two years of sojourning throughout what is left of the United States. He collapses from exhaustion and illness, but as he recovers tells the story of the break-up of the nation into three uneasy independent regions and his journey into the dark heart of the New Foxfire Republic centered in Tennesee and led by the female evangelical despot, Loving Morrow. In the background, Union Grove has been shocked by the Christmas Eve double murder by a young mother, in the throes of illness, of her husband and infant son. Town magistrate Stephen Bullock is in a hanging mood.

“A History of the Future” is attention-grabbing and provocative, but also lyrical, tender, and comic–a vision of a future of America that is becoming more and more convincing and perhaps even desirable with each passing day.

James Howard Kunstler was born in New York City in 1948. He is the author of several books of fiction and nonfiction, including the bestseller “The Long Emergency”. After college he worked as a reporter and feature writer for a number of newspapers and finally as a staff writer for “Rolling Stone”. In 1975 he began writing books and lecturing full time.

Battenkill Books – Author Event: Harry Bliss and Nora Krug


Start: 07/31/2014 7:00 pm

End: 07/31/2014 9:00 pm

Join us for a very special evening with this year’s recipients of the Sendak Fellowship: illustrators Harry Bliss and Nora Krug. In partnership with WAMC’s The Book Show, this event will include a live taping of The Book Show with host Joe Donahue.

bliss_harry_tcm7-16021Harry Bliss is an internationally syndicated cartoonist and cover artist for The New Yorker magazine. His self-titled single panel gag cartoon, ‘BLISS’ appears in major newspapers across the United States and Japan. Growing up in upstate New York amidst a family of successful painters and illustrators, Bliss went on to study painting at The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Illustration at The University of the Arts (BFA) and Syracuse University (MA). Bliss also illustrates books for children. Bliss’s first children’s book, A Fine, Fine School by Newbery-award-winning author, Sharon Creech, was a New York Times bestseller. Bliss went on to illustrate Which Would You Rather Be? by William Steig, Countdown To Kindergarten and Mrs. Watson Wants Your Teeth both by Alison McGhee. Bliss has also created the pictures for Diary of a WormDiary of a Spider, and Diary of a Fly by Doreen Cronin, all New York Times bestsellers. Other bestsellers include Don’t Forget To Come Back by Robie H. Harris and A Very Brave Witch by Alison McGhee andLouise: The Adventure of a Chicken by Kate DiCamillo.

anna_solomonBliss’s first cartoon collection, Death By Laughter, with an introduction by Christopher Guest was published by Abrams in the Spring of 2008. Luke On the Loose, Bliss’ debut award-winning comic book for early readers (edited by Francoise Mouly) was published by Toon Books in the Spring 2009. Recentlly published by Harper Collins is Invisible Inkling by Emily Jenkins with pictures by Harry Bliss.Bailey (A Parent’s Magazine award-winner) was published by Scholastic in September 2011 followed by Bailey at the Museum 2012.Bliss’s next picture book,Anna and Solomon by Elaine Dillof will be published by Farrar Straus and Giroux in September 2013. Harry Bliss lives in Vermont.

nora_krugNora Krug is a writer and artist whose drawings and visual narratives have appeared in publications including The New York Times, The Guardian, le Monde Diplomatique and A Public Space, and in anthologies published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Chronicle Books. She is the creator of the graphic novel, Red Riding Hood Redux, and of Shadow Atlas, an encyclopedia of ghosts and spirits, and the illustrator of the children’s book, My Cold Went On Vacation, published by Penguin/Putnam. Krug is a recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, Fulbright, DAAD, and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation. Her work is included in the Library of Congress and has been recognized by American Illustration. It received three gold medals from the Society of Illustrators and was awarded with merits and a silver cube by the Art

nora2Directors Club. Krug’s story, Kamikaze, about a surviving Japanese WWII pilot, was included in Houghton Mifflin’s Best American Comics and Best Non-Required Reading. Krug’s work has been exhibited internationally, and her animated guide to Japanese business etiquette, How To Bow, was shown at the Sundance Film Festival. She is an associate professor in the Illustration Program at Parsons The New School for Design in New York City.

About the Sendak Fellowship

The Sendak Fellowship was established in 2010 as a residency program for artists who tell stories with illustration. The Fellowship offers the time for artist to explore their craft outside the limitations of everyday life and in the relative isolation of a rural setting.


Between 2010 and 2013, the Sendak Fellowship was run at a house on Maurice Sendak’s property in Ridgefield, Connecticut. There, four resident artists received instruction and support from Mr. Sendak as well as from visiting artists of note.


This summer the fellowship is moving to Scotch Hill Farm, formerly owned by Mr. Sendak, in upstate Cambridge, New York. Two fellows will be provided their own fully equipped cottage with kitchen and studio space and receive a fellow’s stipend. At the same time, the two resident fellows will receive occasional inspiration from visiting artists in the field.

For many years Sendak wanted to create a formal program for what he’d been doing informally his whole career: helping promising illustrators As a young beginning illustrator himself, Sendak was nurtured in the Connecticut home of the artists Ruth Krauss and Crockett Johnson. He saw the Sendak Fellowship as his “school”—a way to help others, and in 2009 enlisted the help of Caponera, as well as photographer and community activist, Dona Ann McAdams (now the fellowship’s director) to help realize his vision.

The goal of the Sendak Fellowship, in Maurice’s words, was for fellows to “create work that is not vapid, stupid, or sexy, but original. Work that excites and incites. Illustration is like dance; it should move like—and to—music.”


15 East Main Street Cambridge, New York 12816 United States