Reading: Mustang by Deanne Stillman

Jan 24, 2014 | Events

Elk River Arts & Lectures will host author Deanne Stillman for a reading and a visit with local high school students on Wednesday and Thursday, April 9 and 10.

Stillman is a widely published, critically acclaimed writer who sets her work in the psyche of the desolate, arid American West. Her book Mustang: The Saga of the Wild Horse in the American West, will be the subject of her Livingston talks. The LA Times included it among their best books of the year, it won the California Book Award silver medal for nonfiction, and was hailed in The Atlantic, The Economist, NPR, The Seattle Times, the Missoulian, and Indian Country Today, among many others.

In Mustang, Stillman says she examines the question of “Why are we, a cowboy nation, destroying the horse we rode in on?” Stillman’s work on the subject has led to the rescue of hundreds of wild horses headed to the slaughterhouse. Pam Houston, writing for the LA Times, says that “[l]ike the best nonfiction writers of our time (Jon Krakauer and Bruce Chatwin come to mind), Stillman’s prose is inviting, her voice authoritative and her vision imaginative and impressively broad…[Mustang] is an invaluable history.”

photo by Mark Lamonica

Stillman’s latest book is Desert Reckoning: A Town Sheriff, a Mojave Hermit and the Biggest Manhunt in Modern California History. Based on a Rolling Stone piece, it won the 2013 Spur Award for best contemporary nonfiction, the LA Press Club Award, was named a Southwest Book of the Year, and praised in many publications. In addition, Stillman is the author of the cult classic Twentynine Palms: A True Story of Murder, Marines and the Mojave, which Hunter S. Thompson called “a strange and brilliant story by an important American writer.”

Stillman will visit with Park High School students on Wednesday, April 9, then give a public reading on Thursday, April 10 at Elk River Books’ new store, 120 N. Main St. (formerly Chatham Fine Art) at 7 p.m. The reading is free, and will be followed by a reception and signing. The events are co-sponsored by the Murray Hotel and Elk River Books.

Elk River Arts & Lectures is a non-profit (501c3 status pending) organization that seeks to bring writers to Livingston for free public readings, and also to provide opportunities for those writers to interact with local public school students. Last fall, ERAL lecturers spoke to and worked with more than 250 Park High students.


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