Reed City Area District Library

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Author A. M. Oomen to Speak

Anne-Marie Oomen to talk and sign books in Reed City, MI - September 15, 2015 at the Depot; 6:00 p.m.
Author A. M. Oomen to Speak
Anne-Marie Oomen, Author
   AMO. If you ever studied Latin, you probably know that AMO means “I love.” But A-M-O are also the initials of one of my favorite authors, Anne-Marie Oomen. And she will be here in Reed City on Tuesday, September 15th, to talk about her newest book - and “I love” this title - LOVE, SEX AND 4-H.
   In this book Oomen has magically captured the essence of what it meant to be young in that happening decade that was the sixties. Yes, it could be called a "rural" memoir, since Oomen did grow up in west Michigan on a farm near Hart, but, because of the way she tells her own story against the backdrop of all that happened during those years, she makes it relevant to everyone who grew up then, because she'll make you remember where you were and what you were doing back then. Sputnik, the Cold War, fallout shelters, duck and cover drills, the Cuban Missile Crisis, assassinations, Vietnam, urban unrest and rioting, the moon landing and more - it's all in there, juxtaposed against her more personal memories of family, 4-H, and Catholic education, followed by an eye-opening transition to public high school, where she experienced her first date, first dance, first boyfriend, first kiss, sexual awakening. Yeah, all that stuff, and it's delivered with the sensitivity of a poet and the wit and timing of a stand-up comic. I know that sounds like an unlikely and difficult combo, but Oomen pulls it off, often combining serious and thoughtful with laugh-out-loud hilarious.
   An award-winning poet, playwright and essayist, Oomen taught creative writing for thirty years at Interlochen Arts Academy and continues to lecture and conduct writing seminars at various schools and colleges around the country. Two of her autobiographical essay collections, PULLING DOWN THE BARN and HOUSE OF FIELDS were Michigan Notable Books.
   I attended the book launch party for LOVE, SEX AND 4-H in Traverse City back in April and it was an EVENT, with music, food, and an overflow crowd of more than two hundred people. Well, Anne-Marie is bringing her show (sponsored by the Reed City Area District Library) to the Reed City Depot on 15 September. And yes, there will be music, provided by Smallmouth, a traditional music group featuring Hersey-ites Bob and Sandy Duke. 
   The program will begin at 6 PM.  Books will be available for purchase and signing.  Mark your calendar. Tuesday, September 15th. Y’all come. You’re gonna love it.
Tim Bazzett
Reed City