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University of Iowa News Release

June 6, 2003

UI Alumna Agee Reads During June 17-20 'Live From Prairie Lights' Schedule

"Live from Prairie Lights," the series of broadcast readings hosted by Julie Englander on University of Iowa radio station WSUI, AM 910, will feature UI alumna Jonis Agee during its June 17-20 schedule:
-- Agee at 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 17;
-- Richard Jackson at 8 p.m. Wednesday, June 18:
-- Iowa City native Melody Lacina at 8 p.m. Thursday, June 19; and
-- and Iowa Citian Tim Johnston at 8 p.m. Friday, June 20.

All the readings will be free events in the Prairie Lights bookstore at 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. Listen to the readings on the Internet at

Agee's new novel is "Acts of Love on Indigo Road." Her previous works include "Strange Angels," "Sweet Eyes," "Pretend We've Never Met," "Bend This Heart," "A .38 Special and A Broken Heart" and "South of Resurrection."

She is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts grant in fiction and a Loft-McNight Award of Distinction. Three of her books were named "Notable Books of the Year" by the New York Times.

Critic Keith Taylor wrote, "Some novelists build their stories around plot, others around characters. Jonis Agee builds her novels upon the small but luminous details." And a critique in the New York Times Book Review called Agee "a gifted poet of that dark lushness in the heart of the American landscape."

Richard Jackson, a teacher in the Iowa Summer Writing Festival, will read from his poetry collection "Heartwall," which won the 1999 Juniper Prize. He is the author of seven books of poems, two anthologies and two critical books. He has been the winner of National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities and Fulbright awards.


Melody Lacina's new poetry collection is "Private Hunger," which a critique in the Comstock Review describes as "a celebration of this earthly body and its capacity for life. Highly recommended."

Her work has appeared in the anthologies, "I Feel a Little Jumpy Around You" and "bite to eat place", and in various journals, including Rain City Review, the Alaska Poetry Review, the Spoon River Poetry Review, the North American Review, Rattle and the Berkeley Poetry Review.

Tim Johnston is the author of the new young-adult novel "Never So Green." Iowa Writers' Workshop faculty member Chris Offutt wrote, "Tim Johnston is a courageous writer who has written a strong and necessary book. 'Never So Green' deserves to be read by young adults, their parents and their guardians."

A Publishers Weekly preview noted, "This hard-hitting tale candidly addresses once-taboo issues in a manner relevant to adolescents. Rather than preaching a moral lesson, Johnston raises provocative questions about family loyalty and the distinctions made between lust, love and endangerment."

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STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Winston Barclay, 319-384-0073,