Catherine Lutz, a professor of anthropology at UNC-Chapel Hill, has written an insightful study of Fayetteville, N.C., home to the largest U.S. Army base, Fort Bragg. The town, which has been nicknamed "Fatalville" and "Fayettenam," is a place where you can find strip malls and strip joints, high rates of venereal disease and smoldering racial violence. From secret training operations using civilians as mock enemies to the low-wage satellite economy of the town, Lutz's history of Fayetteville, Homefront: A Military City and the American 20th Century (pictured), asks the question: "Are we all military dependents?" Hear Lutz discuss Homefront at McIntyre's Fine Books in Fearrington Village, this Saturday, Feb. 16, at 11 a.m. Call 545-5704 for details.
Set in the small Southern town of Lexington, Va., in the 1980s, Kirk Read's memoir How I Learned to Snap: A Small-Town Coming-of-Age and Coming-Out Story celebrates the author's openly gay high school years. Read, who staged a play in high school about coming out, and who took a same-sex date to the prom, represents that group of early "We're here, we're queer--get over it" gay rights pioneers. Already syndicated in over 80 newspapers and alternative weeklies across the nation, Read has become a spokesman for gay youth. Hear him Monday, Feb. 18, at 7 p.m. at the Regulator Bookshop in Durham (call 286-2700 for details) and Wednesday, Feb. 20 at 7:30 p.m. at Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh (call 828-1588 for details).