Writer Brian Jabas Smith will be at Book Beat on Sunday, May 7th 2017 from 3-5 pm to read from and sign copies from his book Spent Saints & Other Stores. Joining Brian Jabas Smith will be special guests musician Eddie Baranek performing songs from the book’s playlist and poet John Freeman. Maggie Rawlings will be the guest host introducing the afternoon event. Books will be available for signing and purchase at the event. If you have any questions or would like to reserve the book, please call Book Beat (248) 968-1190. This event is free and open to the public. Book Beat is located at 26010 Greenfield Rd, Oak Park, MI 48237.
In this powerful collection of linked stories, debut author Brian Jabas Smith gazes into the lives of the stunted and the lost. There’s the teenaged bicycle-racing champion from the Arizona desert who’s escaping an abusive home life. The jaundiced rock ’n’ roll singer whose neon-lit gaze takes us from a Beverly Hills mansion to the crack-cocaine streets of old Hollywood. The desperate addict in the Phoenix barrio with nowhere to turn, strung out on crystal meth, porn, alcohol and nude dancers. Elsewhere, a Detroit journalist discovers that sobriety wasn’t part of his job description, and the internally crippled mother whose lovely daughters are doomed for life. These stories are disturbing and raw yet offer eerily beautiful portrayals of loss, ultimately, reclamation, and perhaps, redemption.
“Smith rocks and rolls with his tales of music, booze, drugs and bicycle racing. This book has it all … ” —Bonnie Jo Campbell, author of Mothers, Tell Your Daughters, Once Upon a River, and American Salvage
“A gimlet-eyed chronicler of subterranean scenes, Brian Jabas Smith has spent a career finding both truth and beauty among those who’ve been consigned to the narrow margins of society. At last we’re given a collection that captures the essence of his vintage neon prose. But Spent Saints is more than just glorious guttersnipe poetry — it’s a work of deep empathy and trenchant wit, a humanist drama that seeks to understand the lives of the artistic demimonde and the unglamorous working masses at once.”
—Bob Mehr, author of Trouble Boys: The True Story of the Replacements
Brian Smith has written for many magazines and alt-weeklies, and his fiction has appeared in a variety of literary journals. He’s an award-winning journalist, first as a staff writer and columnist at Phoenix New Times and then as an editor at Detroit’s Metro Times. Before writing full time, Smith was a songwriter who fronted rock & roll bands Beat Angels and, before that, GAD. He has penned tunes with lots of folks, including Alice Cooper. At one point he overcame heady crystal meth and alcohol addictions. As a kid growing up in Tucson, Ariz., Smith was a national class bicycle racer. He now lives back in Tucson and his debut collection of short stories, Spent Saints, is due out spring 2017.