The Greenfield Public Library will host Greenfield author Jan Maher reading from her new book Earth As It Is.
The book takes place in Texas in the 1930s when Charlie Bader comes of age with urges he has struggled with since childhood and does not understand. After his new bride finds him wearing her own lingerie and leaves him in disgust, he moves to Chicago. There, he stumbles on a community of cross-dressers, and begins to attend their secret soirees. When Pearl Harbor is bombed, he volunteers for the army, serving as a dentist and trying once again to leave his obsession behind. Instead, his wartime experiences lead to his reappearance in the small town of Heaven, Indiana, as Charlene. There, Charlene opens a beauty shop where Heaven’s women safely share their stories and secrets as she shampoos, clips, curls, and combs their hair. Charlene deftly manages to keep her own story hidden and her sexual desires quiet until she falls in love with a female customer and her life begins to change.
Several copies of the book will be available at the library in advance of the program.
Maher’s previous writing credits include Heaven, Indiana (a novel and 2011 Eric Hoffer Book Awards finalist), Most Dangerous Women: Bringing History to Life through Readers’ Theater, and Intruders and Ismene (plays). Her short stories have been published in numerous on-line and in-print journals, most recently in Meat for Tea: The Valley Review. She is a senior fellow at the Institute for Ethics in Public Life, State University of New York at Plattsburgh. She lives with her husband in Greenfield.
The program is sponsored by the Friends of the Library with the World Eye Book Shop. Refreshments will be served.