Friday, April 8, 2016

"Chopin with Cherries" and "Across the Atlantic" to be Featured at Book Expo America (Chicago, May 2016)

Book Expo America (BEA), which is the largest book show in the US, will be held in Chicago this year in mid-May, and Poland is the featured country. The Poland exhibit is being managed by the Book Institute in Krakow and the Polish Cultural Institute in NYC.  Terry Tegnazian, publisher of Aquila Polonica (a Los Angeles small press specializing in Polish stories from World War II - in Poland and abroad) suggested that there is a “Books in English” section within the Poland exhibit. They have agreed, and asked Ms. Tegnazian to organize it. 

Our anthology, Chopin with Cherries and its editor's volume of poems, Slicing the Bread, were added to the list of suggested books, and have received the approval  from the Book Institute and Polish Cultural Institute to be included in the Books in English section. Both books got great reviews: Chopin and Bread. 

Edited by Dr. Maja Trochimczyk, and published in 2010Chopin with Cherries celebrates the 200th birth anniversary of Polish pianist-composer, Fryderyk Chopin (1810-1849). Ninety-one poets are represented here; they live in the U.S., England, France, Mexico, the Philippines and Poland - with family roots in Poland, Australia, China, France, India, Italy, Malta, Mexico, the Philippines, Serbia, and other countries. The anthology includes more than 122 poems in English, and one important Polish poem, Cyprian Kamil Norwid's Fortepian Szopena, in a new English translation by Leonard Kress (this is the first English translation of Norwid's masterpiece, considered too difficult even by the translator of his entire oeuvre, Adam Czerniawski). English-language classics include verse by T. S. Elliot, Emma Lazarus and Amy Lowell.

Slicing the Bread, published in 2014 by The Finishing Line Press, is a unique poetry collection that revisits the dark days of World War II and the post-war occupation of Poland by the Soviet Union that “liberated” the country from one foreign oppression to replace it with another. The point of view is that of children, raised by survivors, scarred by war, wary of politics. Maja Trochimczyk's poems, each inspired by a single object giving rise to memories like Proust’s madeleine (a spoon, a coat, the smell of incense) are divided into three sections, starting with snapshots of World War II in the Polish Borderlands (Kresy) and in central Poland. Reflections on the Germans’ brutal killings of Jews and Poles are followed by insights into the way the long shadow of THE war darkened a childhood spent behind the Iron Curtain. For poet Georgia Jones Davis, this book, “brings the experience of war into shocking, immediate focus” through Trochimczyk’s use of “her weapon: Language at its most precise and lyrical, understated and piercingly visual.” 

Additionally, Across the Atlantic: The Adamowicz Brothers, Polish Aviation Pioneers by Zofia Reklewska-Braun and Kazimierz Braun will be on display at Book Expo America - Poland section, within a Books in English subsection. 

Across the Atlantic recounts the adventures and misunventures of two Polish amateur-pilots, Joe (Józef) and Ben (Bolesław) Adamowicz, who immigrated to the US in the 1900s-1910s, and in the summer of 1934 flew over the Atlantic on a single-engine plane Bellanca. Their trip took them from New York to Warsaw; they were the first Poles to do so. They became instant celebrities, favorites of the journalists, photographers, and the public on both sides of the Atlantic. Alas, their triumph was short-lived, followed by a fall from grace, to imprisonment and bankruptcy. This richly illustrated book brings to life their forgotten story. Written by a historian, journalist and educator Zofia Reklewska-Braun and director, writer, scholar, and author of over 50 books, Dr. Kazimierz Braun, this book was originally published in Poland in 2011.

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