2019 Rochester Reads:

American War

by Omar El Akkad

American War by Omar El Akkad (in paperback) is available for sale at Writers & Books at a cover price of $16.95 each. Books will also be available for sale at all author events. 

Writers & Books offers a discount on books to members (just ask at the bookstore) as well as bulk discounts to schools and book groups for 10 copies or more (email karen@wab.org). See our bookstore for discounted selections of previous Rochester Reads titles.

Visit the Writers & Books website at www.wab.org for more information and Calendar updates.

See DETAILS at end for additional information about calendar events.

Calendar of Events

DateEvent              Venue                                 Admission Information
Thurs. Jan. 3
5:00pm
Deadline for submissions: 2 Pages/2 Voices1See Details below.
Tues. Jan. 22
8:00pm
Reading: 2 Pages/2 Voices1Writers & Books                
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
Free. For more information call (585) 473-2590, x107.
Sat. Jan. 26   11:00am-12:30pm
Creative Approaches to American War: A Training for Teachers and Book Discussion Leaders2Writers & Books
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
Free but registration required. For more information or to register email karen@wab.org by 5pm on Tues. Jan. 22.
Fri. Feb. 1            6:00-9:30pm
Kickoff party for 19th year of “Rochester Reads”3Writers & Books
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
Free. No registration required. For more information call (585) 473-2590, x107.
Mon. Feb. 4    11:00am          Children’s Book Drive for Rochester International Academy begins4Writers & Books
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
See Details below.
Mon. Feb. 4    6:30pm         Book discussion of American WarWinton Branch Library
611 Winton Rd. N. ROCHESTER    
Free. No registration required. For more information call (585) 428-8204.
Thurs. Feb. 7     6:30-8:30pmDystopias on Film Series: Screening of The Road (2009, 111 mins., Rated R)
Penfield Public Library
1985 Baird Rd. PENFIELD
Free but registration required beginning Jan. 24. To register or for more information call (585) 340-8720.
Tues. Feb. 12  11:00amBook discussion of American WarVictor Farmington Library
15 W. Main St.VICTOR
Free but registration required. To register call (585) 924-2637 or visit http://victorfreelibrary.evanced.info/signup/Calendar. For more information email gselin@pls-net.org.
Tues. Feb. 12  6:30pmBook discussion of American WarVictor Farmington Library15 W. Main St.VICTORFree but registration required. To register call (585) 924-2637 or visit http://victorfreelibrary.evanced.info/signup/Calendar. For more information email gselin@pls-net.org.
Sat. Feb. 16       10:30-11:30amClimate Change Talk by Abigail McHugh-Grifa, Interim Executive Director of Rochester People’s Climate CoalitionPenfield Public Library
1985 Baird Rd. PENFIELD
Free but registration required beginning Feb. 1. To register or for more information call (585) 340-8720.
Sat. Feb. 16       6:30pmDystopias on Film Series: Screening of Children of Men (2006, directed by Alfonso Cuarón, from the novel by P.D. James; 1 hour 49 minutes)The Little Theatre
240 East Ave. ROCHESTER
General Admission $7/Regular discounts apply for Little Members/Writers and Books members $5. For more information call (585) 248-0400 or visit https://thelittle.org.
Mon. Feb. 25  7:00-8:00pmBook discussion of American WarFairport Public Library
1 Village Landing FAIRPORT
Free. No registration required. For more information call (585) 223-9091 or visit www.fairportlibrary.org.
Tues. Feb. 26  7:00-8:30pmPanel discussion: “The End of The World as We Know It, But it Plays Fine: Games, Dystopias, and Apocalypses,” followed by book signing5Writers & Books
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
Free. No registration required. For more information email karen@wab.org.
Wed. Feb. 27    12:00-1:00pm
Brownbag book discussion of American WarCentral Library of Rochester & Monroe County
Rundel Arts Room, 1st floor, Rundel Memorial Building  
115 South Ave.  ROCHESTER (sponsored by Friends & Foundation of the Rochester Public Library)
Free. No registration required. Light refreshments served. Brownbag lunches welcome. For more information call (585) 428-8375 or email carol.moldt@libraryweb.org.
Thurs. Feb. 28 1:00pmBook discussion of American WarOgden Farmer’s Library
269 Ogden Center Rd. SPENCERPORT
Free. No registration required. For more information call (585) 617-6181.
Thurs. Feb. 28     6:30-8:30pmDystopias on Film Series: Screening of 12 Monkeys (1995, 130 mins., Rated R)
Penfield Public Library
1985 Baird Rd. PENFIELD
Free but registration required beginning Feb. 14. To register or for more information call (585) 340-8720.
Thurs. Feb. 28     7:00-9:00pmBook discussion of American War with the Rush Readers’ Book ClubRush Public Library
5977 E. Henrietta Rd.         RUSH
Free but registration required. To register or for more information call (585) 533-1370.
Thurs. March 7     6:30-8:30pmDystopias on Film Series: Screening of Logan’s Run (1976, 120 mins., Rated PG)
Penfield Public Library1985 Baird Rd. PENFIELDFree but registration required beginning Feb. 21. To register or for more information call (585) 340-8720.
Thurs. March 7     7:00-9:00pmBook discussion of American War with the Rush Readers’ Book ClubRush Public Library
5977 E. Henrietta Rd.         RUSH
Free but registration required. To register or for more information call (585) 533-1370.
Fri. March 8       7:00pm
Book discussion of American WarLAVA (Literature & Visual Arts)
First Unitarian Church (Susan B. Anthony Room) 220 Winton Rd. S. ROCHESTER
Free. No registration required. For more information email Bill Fugate at wrfugate@frontiernet.net.
Wed. March 13     10:30am-12:00pmBook discussion of American WarValley Manor
1570 East Ave. ROCHESTER
Free and open to the public but registration required. To register or for more information call (585) 770-1956 or email greeves@episcopalseniorlife.org.
Wed. March 13     6:30pm
Pints & Prose: discussion of American War        (age 21+ monthly book discussion sponsored by Greece Public Library)Blue Barn Cidery
928 Manitou Rd. HILTON            
Registration is required. Call (585) 225-8951 or register online at www.greecepubliclibrary.org.
Wed. March 13  7:00-8:30pmLecture: “Philosophy & Politics in Utopian & Dystopian Literature” by Dr. Jeffrey Allen Tucker, University of Rochester6Writers & Books
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
Free. No registration required. For more information email karen@wab.org.
Thurs. March 14 7:00pmBook discussion of American WarOgden Farmer’s Library
269 Ogden Center Rd. SPENCERPORT
Free. Registration is appreciated but not required. For more information or to register call (585) 617-6181.
Thurs. March 14 7:00-9:00pmDystopian Board and Digital Game NightROC Game Dev Space Suite 2700 at Sibley Square250 E. Main St.ROCHESTERFree. Registration is appreciated but not required. For more information or to register call (585) 490-0008.
Mon. March 18 7:00-8:30pmBook discussion of American WarPittsford Community Library
Fisher Meeting Room 24 State St. PITTSFORD
No registration required. For more information call (585) 248-6275.
Mon. March 18 7:00-8:30pmOpen Forum Discussion Series: We’re F*#!ed: Dystopian Fiction
Writers & Books
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
Free for W&B members/$3 general public. No registration required. For more information call (585) 473-2590, x107.
Tues. March 19 1:30-3:00pmBook discussion of American WarBrighton Memorial Library, Friends Learning Center
2300 Elmwood Ave. BRIGHTON (sponsored by Friends of Brighton Memorial Library)
Free. No registration required. For more information call Judy Rosenberg at (585) 784-5346.
Tues. March 19 2:00pm
Book discussion of American WarGreece Public Library
2 Vince Tofany Blvd.GREECE
No registration required. For more information or to register call (585) 225-8951 or visit www.greecepubliclibrary.org.
Wed. March 20 7:00-8:30pmBook discussion of American WarBrighton Memorial Library, Friends Learning Center
2300 Elmwood Ave. BRIGHTON (sponsored by Friends of Brighton Memorial Library)
Free. No registration required. For more information call Judy Rosenberg at (585) 784-5346.
Sat. March 23       6:00pmDystopias on Film Series: Blade Runner double feature7
The Little Theatre
240 East Ave. ROCHESTER
For ticket prices see Details below. For other information call (585) 248-0400 or visit https://thelittle.org.
Mon. March 25   7:00-8:00pmBook discussion of American War for teens and adultsMendon Public Library22 N. Main St.         HONEOYE FALLSFree but registration required. To register or for more information call (585) 624-6067.
Tues. March 26      1:00-2:00pm
Author Omar El Akkad talks live in studio with host Evan Dawson and local callers on “Connections”WXXI Radio—1370 AMFree. To join the conversation call (585) 263-WXXI (263-9994).
Tues. March 26      5:30-7:00pmA Novel Evening with Omar El AkkadLocation provided with tickets; space for this intimate event is very limitedTickets are $75 each. To purchase tickets call (585) 473-2590 x107.
Wed. March 27    12:00-1:30pm
Author visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingCentral Library of Rochester & Monroe CountyKate Gleason Auditorium 115 South Ave.ROCHESTER (sponsored by Friends & Foundation of the Rochester Public Library)Free. No registration required. For more information call (585) 428-8350 or email Susan.Lusignan@libraryweb.org.
Wed. March 27     4:00-5:30pm

Author visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingNazareth College Linehan Chapel, Golisano Academic Center
4245 East Avenue PITTSFORD
Free. No registration required. For more information email fgentil7@naz.edu.
Wed. March 27     7:00-9:30pmAuthor visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signing
*This event will be ASL interpreted
Penfield Public Library
1985 Baird Rd. PENFIELD
Free but registration required beginning March 1. To register or for more information call (585) 340-8720.
Thurs. March 28     ALL DAYOmar El Akkad Twitter TakeoverLook for Omar’s tweets all day signed “#OEARR”
Thurs. March 28     10:30-11:45am
Author visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingWood Library
134 N. Main St. CANANDAIGUA
Free. No registration required. For more information call (585) 394-1381.
Thurs. March 28     12:45-2:00pm
Author visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingFinger Lakes Community College
Stage 14
3325 Marvin Sands Dr. CANANDAIGUA
Free for students/$2 general public. No registration required. For more information call (585) 785-1367 or email  curtis.nehringbliss@flcc.edu.
Thurs. March 28     3:30-5:00pm
Author visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingSUNY Geneseo
Tower Room
1 College Cir.     GENESEO
Free. No registration required. For more information call (585) 245-5591 or email rawlins@geneseo.edu.
Thurs. March 28     7:30-9:00pm
Author visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingGreece Public Library
2 Vince Tofany Blvd.GREECE
Free but registration required. For more information or to register call (585) 225-8951 or visit www.greecepubliclibrary.org.
Fri. March 29   10:00-11:30amAuthor visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingVictor Town Hall
85 E. Main St.         VICTOR (sponsored by Victor Farmington Library)
Free and open to the public. For information call (585) 924-2637. Registration encouraged through www.victorfarmingtonlibrary.org.
Fri. March 29    12:00-1:00pmAuthor visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingMonroe Community College
R. Thomas Flynn Campus Center, Monroe A and B
1000 Henrietta Road   HENRIETTA (parking in Lot M)
Free and open to the public. Tickets available at www.monroecctickets.com. For information call (585) 292-2534.
Fri. March 29    3:00-4:30pmAuthor visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingValley Manor
1570 East Ave. ROCHESTER
Free but registration required. To register or for more information call (585) 770-1956 or email greeves@episcopalseniorlife.org.
Fri. March 29    6:00-7:30pm
Author visit by Omar El Akkad: Reading followed by Q&A and book signingSt. John Fisher College Cleary Auditorium
3690 East Avenue PITTSFORD
Free. No registration required. For more information call (585) 385-8078 or email jrobinson@sjfc.edu.
Sat. March 30   10:00am-12:00pm
Master Class with Omar El AkkadWriters & Books
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
$45 W&B members/$50 general public. Space is very limited. To register call (585) 473-2590, x107.
Sat. March 30   7:00-9:00pm
Rochester Rewritten: Rochester in the Alternative Reading8Nox Cocktail Lounge 302 N. Goodman St. ROCHESTERFree. No registration required. For more information email karen@wab.org.
Mon. April 1    9:00pm        Children’s Book Drive for Rochester International Academy ends3Writers & Books
740 University Ave. ROCHESTER
See Details below for information

DETAILS ABOUT CALENDAR EVENTS

1. Writers & Books and Geva Theatre Center Seek Submissions for 2 Pages/2 Voices. Each January, Writers & Books and Geva Theatre Center collaborate to present 2 Pages/2 Voices, an evening of short short plays written by area writers and read by area actors. Each play must be no more than two pages in length and contain no more than two characters. The only other stipulation for this year’s submissions is that at some point in the play the word “camp” must be included, a reference to American War. Deadline for submissions: Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019, at 5:00pm. Submissions should be e-mailed to submissions@wab.org. Winners will be notified on Tuesday, Jan. 15. Reading: Tuesday, Jan. 22 at 8:00pm at Writers & Books.

2. Creative Approaches to American War: A Training for Teachers and Book Discussion Leaders. Join Wendy Low, former Youth Education and Outreach Coordinator at Writers & Books, and Karen vanMeenen, RIT faculty member and Coordinator of Rochester Reads, for a presentation and discussion of various approaches to teaching and discussing American War. The discussion will revolve around analyzing the writers’ craft; character development, choices and change; the use of creative writing and personal writing assignments in the classroom; genre fiction; and other pertinent topics such as the timely social and cultural issues raised within the text. This workshop is geared toward anyone interested in a deeper understanding of this novel, especially book discussion leaders and teachers looking for insight and creative approaches to the learning process. Free but advance registration required: email karen@wab.org by Tuesday, Jan. 22 at 5pm.

3. Join us on Friday, February 1 to kick off the 19th year of the Rochester Reads program! Expand the celebration with a Scavenger Hunt as part of First Friday, with prizes. Visit participating First Friday venues and find a hidden item related to the book (images of the item will be posted on the W&B website and Facebook page and via Twitter on Friday, February 1 at noon). Bring your found item to W&B by 9:30pm that night to receive a free copy of American War. This event is free and open to the public. For information on W&B events visit www.wab.org. For information about the monthly First Friday events, visit www.firstfridayrochester.org.

4. Children’s Book Drive for The Rochester International Academy, an organization that facilitates the cultural and academic transition of newly arrived English Language Learners through rigorous language instruction and interdisciplinary learning in collaboration with families and community. Particular needs include: easier picture books as well as PBS Kids characters such as Clifford, Curious George, etc. for 3rd graders; superheroes and picture books for 5th/6th graders; and middle-grade novels as well as non fiction (science, US history and soccer) and graphic novels for 7th/8th graders. Drop off books at Writers & Books from February 4 to April 1 or at any of the author’s events in March.

5. Panel discussion: “The End of The World as We Know It, But it Plays Fine: Games, Dystopias, and Apocalypses.” Panelists: Stephen Jacobs, Professor, School of Interactive Games and Media at Rochester Institute of Technology, and Visiting Scholar, The Strong National Museum of Play; David Simkins, Associate Professor, School of Interactive Games and Media at RIT, and author of The Arts of Larp: Design, Literacy, Learning and Community in Live-Action Role Play; and Trent Hergenrader, Assistant Professor, Department of English at RIT, and author of Collaborative Worldbuilding for Writers and Gamers and the Collaborative Worldbuilding Deck. The panel discussion will be followed by a book signing.

6. Lecture: “Philosophy & Politics in Utopian & Dystopian Literature.” Jeffrey Allen Tucker is an Associate Professor in the Department of English at the University of Rochester. His research and teaching interests include 20th-century American and African American literature and Science Fiction. He is the author of A Sense of Wonder:  Samuel R. Delany, Race, Identity & Difference, editor of Conversations with John A. Williams, and co-editor of Race Consciousness: African American Studies for the New Century.

7. Blade Runner double feature. In 2019, the year in which the original narrative is set, we will celebrate this classic film with a screening of the original, the sequel, and several short Blade Runner films. The schedule:

6:00pm: Blade Runner (1982, directed by Ridley Scott, based on the novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick; 1 hour 57 minutes)

8:30pm: Blade Runner 2049 (2017, directed by Dennis Villeneuve, 2 hours 44 minutes)

(this second feature will be preceded by related short films, 26 mins.)

Giveaways between screenings.

Tickets: General Admission for each film: $9; General Admission for double feature $14; Little Members and Writers & Books members: $5 per film. Tickets will be available in advance on https://thelittle.org and at the door.

8. Rochester Rewritten Reading. Join us for a lively reading by contributors and invited actors from the collection Rochester Rewritten: Rochester in the Alternative (2013) in which
Rochester-area authors and poets take you on a journey through alternate histories, presents, and futures of our famous North Coast city. These Rochesters may not be places you recognize immediately, and you will soon see they are more unusual than you ever imagined. Copies of the book will be available for sale at the reading (and at Writers & Books in advance) .