January News & Events

Mary Wells: The Tumultuous Life of Motown’s First Superstar, at Book Beat on Thurs. Jan. 24!

Author Peter Benjaminson will present his new book, the first biography ever on Motown superstar Mary Wells at the Book Beat, 26010 Greenfield in Oak Park, on Thursday, January 24th at 7 PM. Please call 248-968-1190 for more information or to reserve a book. Anyone with an interest in the history of Detroit music should check this book out. They will be well rewarded. Copies of Benjaminson’s  biography of Supreme Flo Ballard will also be on hand.

Peter Benjaminson talks about Motown and why he wrote a book on Mary Wells: “There are a lot of older people who remember Mary and “My Guy.” It’s still a very popular song, part of the American culture because it’s so well written, so well sung. It’s really punched through the time barricade. Plus there are a lot of younger people who have heard about her and want to find out what happened to her.

And Motown is still so popular. “The Story of Motown” was the first book published in this country on Motown Records. There have been more than 180 since. And they’ve all sold — otherwise publishers wouldn’t continue. If you look at other record companies, there are probably one or two books on Atlantic Records, one or two on Stax, maybe one on Columbia. I’d bet my life there aren’t more than two books on any other record company in America.

Read an excerpt from the book and more at:  Peter Benjamin’s 3rd Motown Book tells the story of Mary Wells, Detroit Free Press More info here.

“There is plenty about hanky-panky and substance abuse in “Mary Wells: The Tumultuous Life of Motown’s First Superstar”; apparently Wells never ran into a man or a narcotic (or a highball or a cigarette) she didn’t like. And though Peter Benjaminson reports on all that, he also tells us where the music came from and how it went away, doing justice to his fallen angel of a pop star.”  - Wall Street Journal; There was Something About Mary

” Twenty years after her death, singer Mary Wells’s unmistakable voice still has the power to haunt and heal her fans. Just listen to her classic “Two Lovers.” In “Mary Wells: The Tumultuous Life of Motown’s First Superstar (Chicago Review Press,$26.95), author Peter Benjaminson chisels away at the walls that the singer built up over her career to protect herself and preserve her image.”  – Essence Magazine

“Until now, Wells’ story has been told in bits and pieces in various books (including, full disclosure, my 1998 book “Women of Motown”) and in a 2011 episode of TV One’s celebrity biography show “Unsung,” but Benjaminson’s biography is the first full-length book about Motown’s early superstar, the female singer who, had she stayed at Motown, arguably might have “been” Diana Ross.”  – Susan Whitall, “The Rise and Fall of Mary Wells”, Detroit News

Author Gary Small, M.D. at Fox Run, Mon. Jan. 28!

Book Beat is proud to welcome bestselling author Gary Small, M.D. to the Fox Run Senior Living Home (41000 13 Mile Road, Novi, Michigan 48377) on Monday, January 28th from 1pm-2:30pm to promote the paperback release of The Alzheimer’s Prevention Program. He will be speaking and signing copies of his books. This event is free and open to the public. Non-residents of Fox Run MUST call to ensure a seat. Please contact Megan Smith at (248) 668-8752 . Books will be available for purchase and signing at the event courtesy of Book Beat. To reserve a copy of the book or if there are any further questions, please call Book Beat (248) 968-1190.   More info here.

World Book Night returns to the USA – register to be a giver BEFORE January 23rd!

World Book Night is an annual celebration dedicated to spreading the love of reading, person to person.  Each year on April 23, tens of thousands of people in the U.S. go out into their communities and give a total of half a million free World Book Night paperbacks to light and non-readers. You must apply BEFORE January 23rd, 2013 to become a book giver. For more information on becoming a giver please contact THE  WORLD BOOK NIGHT WEB PAGE.

Last year, around ten book-givers met at Book Beat the week of April 15th to pick up their cartons of free books. We talked about our plans and who we wanted to give our books to, and gave out buttons and brochures. The purpose of this annual event is to stimulate reading for those who are light readers or do not have the ability to purchase books or visit libraries easily. Volunteers are needed to distribute books selected for this years give-away.  Book Beat will again become a distribution point for the metro-Detroit area. Please consider becoming a book giver and then help share with us your stories and photos. We hope to grow awareness about this date and the book giveaway.

Friends of the Berkley Library Present Local Author Natalie Taylor

Tuesday, January 22nd at 7:00pm author Natalie Taylor will present her book Signs of Life in the Berkley Public Library Meeting Room.  The Berkley Public Library is located at 3155 Coolidge Berkley, MI 48072. This event is free to the Public. Please register in person or by calling the Reference Desk at 248-658-3440. Natalie Taylor is a Berkley High School English teacher who started to journal as a way of dealing with her sudden loss of her husband in an accident while pregnant with her son. The journal not only provided a vent for her feelings, It turned into an acclaimed memoir. Ms. Taylor will speak about her book, and copies will be available for purchase and signing. Book Beat will be selling books at this event and  can be purchased from us beforehand. If you would like a signed copy but are unable to attend, you can visit us to assure you get a signed copy. The following link is to the Berkley Public Library’s website

The Book Beat Reading group selects Wide Sargasso Sea

The Book Beat Reading Group selection for February is Jean Rhys’ masterpiece Wide Sargasso Sea. The Reading Group will meet on Wednesday, February 27 at 7pm in The Goldfish Teahouse (117 W. Fourth St. in Downtown Royal Oak).  Books are discounted 15% at Book Beat. All are welcome!

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