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The best readings of the week are happening tonight, folks.

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This afternoon at the Central Library, Nikki McClure will talk. The beloved Olympia artist, whose cut-paper artwork you see everywhere nowadays, will talk about her newest book, How to Cook the Perfect Day.

The Hugo House will be hosting Cheap Wine and Poetry tonight. The very popular and very entertaining reading series closes out 2010 with readers including Elissa Ball, Evan Peterson, Sean O'Connor and Mary Purdy. Wine will be, as always, a buck a glass.

Nicole Krauss reads at Elliott Bay Book Company tonight. I don't usually bet against Cheap Wine and Poetry, but this is the reading of the night. The books lead this week is all about Krauss's new novel Great House. It's a book about a desk that changes hands from owner to owner:

One way to read Great House would be as a haunted-house story, with the desk's drawers and monstrous silhouette standing in as a miniature house. There's enough Gothic imagery here to make a case for that reading. Even as the story moves to London and Jerusalem and America, it's hard not to imagine Emily Brontë's foggy moor skulking around outside every window. Sometimes the horrors even come right up to the window for an overt moment of terror, as when a young man "in a strange, almost pitiful coat with a matted fur collar" stares with "black shining eyes" at a mother and child "with the hunger of a wolf."

And at Open Books, Dorothea Lasky and Lewis Warsh will read. I don't know anything about Warsh, but Black Life, Lasky's most recent collection of poems, was published by outstanding local press Wave Books. You can find a couple of her poems over at The Awl. She's really phenomenal.

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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 something to read, you can get personalized book recommendations from myself and a team of 5 expert booksellers from Third Place Books over at Questionland. Tell us what books you've loved, what subject you'd like to learn about, or what kind of person you're looking to give a book to and we'll have a few great recommendations for you in no time flat. Ask away!