Bread and roses
In Judith Ryan Hendricks’ Baker’s Blues (Chien Bleu Press, 2015), Wyn Morrison’s ex-husband Mac has died suddenly in an accident. Despite her status as his former trophy wife, Wyn, a baker of artisanal breads in Los Angeles, is the executor of Mac’s estate. Her friends and relatives come from around the country to attend a memorial service and then scatter back to their lives and responsibilities, leaving her to sort through the possessions of the man who left her lonely but not technically a widow. Mac’s adult daughter, Skye, with whom Wyn has never managed to become friends, arrives from New Zealand lost in grief that Wyn can’t penetrate. The story moves backand-forth in time and includes numerous characters, many of who appeared in the first two novels in the series, Bread Alone (2002) and The Baker’s Apprentice (2006). Hendricks reads from Baker’s Blues at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 10, at Collected Works Bookstore (202 Galisteo St., 505-988-4226). A very different take on loss is presented in the Renesan Institute for Lifelong Learning lecture “In Honor of Labor Day: The Rise and Fall of the Wobblies in the American West” at 1 p.m. Sept. 10 at St. John’s United Methodist Church (1200 Old Pecos Trail). Ken and Martha Simonsen discuss the history of the Industrial Workers of the World — also known as the Wobblies — and the violent clash in 1917 between over a thousand striking Wobblies and an organized posse of thousands of strike-breakers at the Phelps Dodge mine in Bisbee, Arizona. Union members were deported from Arizona to Luna County, New Mexico, where Gov. Washington Ellsworth Lindsey provided temporary housing. Admission is $10. Register at www.ssreg.com/renesan; call 505-982-9274.