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Release: May 7, 1999


DIANE ACKERMAN READS AT PRAIRIE LIGHTS MAY 20 -- Essayist Diane Ackerman will read from her new book "Deep Play" at 8 p.m. Thursday, May 20 in the Prairie Lights bookstore, 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. The reading is free and open to the public.

"Ackerman is a profound and generous observer of the world around her. All the blues can be swept away by her vibrant prose," an Entertainment Weekly review proclaimed.

The New York Times Book Review called Ackerman "a writer who inspires devotion in her readers, [she] comes across in her books as a thoroughly nice person -- a mensch with a large, ranging intellect."

Booklist said of Ackerman's latest that, "The very act of reading this original, exultant, sage, poetic, and generous meditation on the importance of enchantment is deep play, and you can't ask that a book be any more wonderful than that."

Ackerman is the author of seven books of non-fiction, including "A Natural History of the Senses" and "The Moon by Whalelight," as well as several books of poetry. She has been the recipient of the John Burroughs Nature Award and the Academy of American Poets' Lavan Poetry Prize. She has taught at several universities, including Columbia, Cornell, William & Mary, and Ohio University. Her essays have appeared in National Geographic, the New Yorker, the New York Times, and Parade.

The reading will be broadcast live on WSUI AM 910 and WOI AM 640.

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SPRIESTERSBACH READS FROM HISTORY OF UI MAY 21 -- University of Iowa emeritus vice president and dean Duane Spriestersbach will read from his new UI Press book, "The Way it Was: The University of Iowa, 1964-1989," at 8 p.m. Friday, May 21 in Prairie Lights, 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. The free reading will be broadcast on the "Live from Prairie Lights" series, originating on UI radio station WSUI, AM 910.

Spriestersbach's account includes the years of campus turmoil during the Vietnam War through the evolution of computers at the UI.

During his UI career "Sprie" reported to four presidents and served as acting president. He was vice president for educational development and dean of the graduate college from 1965 to 1989, and he served as acting president in 1981 and 1982.