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We have a discussion about "the Surveillance Society" today at noon, and the authors of a short story collection and the sixth in a series of historical fiction novel appearing all around town today.

But the real action is in Pioneer Square. Gina Ochsner appears at Elliott Bay Book Company at 2 pm today. The Russian Dream Book of Color and Flight is a funny, sweet, sad, dark novel about the residents of a ratty apartment building in the former Soviet Union. I wrote about it in Constant Reader this week:

The novel is structured like the apartment building it documents. It opens on the roof, where Mircha, a one-armed drunk, falls to his death, and it slowly pans down through the building, pausing to study the various inhabitants (Mircha's wife, who can't bury her husband's body in the frozen ground and so stashes him in a snowbank and hopes nobody will notice; a veteran who refuses to take off an unwieldy aviator's helmet; a pair of feral twin children; a woman named Tanya who works at a museum whose exhibits are made of trash, reshaped and rebuilt into rough approximations of items of historical interest and value).

Ochsner is a lovely author, and this book is very funny and totally worth your time.

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And! It's the penultimate day of African-American History Month. Elliott Bay, as always, celebrates with a group reading by the African-American Writers' Alliance, a collection of local African-American authors, tonight at 7:30.

The full readings calendar, including the next week or so, is here. And if you're planning on staying in and you're looking for personalized book recommendations, feel free to tell me the books you like and ask me what to read next over at Questionland.