Charles Blackstone reads with John Wesley Harding, Iowa City, IA, October 2013

Charles Blackstone reads with John Wesley Harding, Iowa City, IA, October 2013

Event Information:

  • Sun

    Chicago Book Expo

    11:15 am - 12:45 pmSt. Augustine College, 1345 W. Argyle, Chicago


    A Million Years Old in Internet Time: The Enduring Legend of Bookslut

    When Jessa Crispin began Bookslut in 2002, there were few voices on the Internet, and fewer critics blogging about books. Over the next decade, as the site expanded to an acclaimed book review publication that’s read across the world, the world of online criticism grew alongside. Today, there are many sites dedicated to books, and hundreds of thousands of book aficionados reading—and often commenting themselves. But has this influx of voices benefitted readers or made it more difficult for them to know whom to trust? Join Bookslut’s founder and editor-in-chief, Jessa Crispin, and managing editor, Charles Blackstone, as they discuss the good, the bad, and the ugly of blogging and the Internet and all things book criticism. 


    The Art of Friction: Where Autobiographical Fiction and Creative Nonfiction Come Together 

    Charles Blackstone’s first novel, The Week You Weren’t Here, followed an English major protagonist who was looking for love and meaning during his final weeks of undergrad at UIC. Blackstone was also an English major about to graduate at UIC while he wrote the first draft. Ten years after that book’s publication comes Blackstone’s second novel about a recovering English major and adjunct professor who meets a celebrity sommelier and falls into love and wine at the same time after discovering her popular TV show. It’s no small coincidence that Blackstone is married to Master Sommelier Alpana Singh, former host of PBS’s hit Check, Please! and current Food Network regular and Chicago-area restaurateur. Join Blackstone as he reads from his new novel and discusses its hybrid creative nonfiction-and-autobiographical fiction genre he’s dubbed “friction” with Bookslut’s editor-in-chief, Jessa Crispin.