James McBride. Photo by Chia Messina.

James McBride. Photo by Chia Messina.

This fall's English @ Minnesota series will bring in novelist (and jazz musician, and memoirist, and ...) James McBride, who will talk about "The Good Lord Bird," winner of the 2013 National Book Award (and soon to be a major motion picture, starring Jaden Smith) (and produced by McBride himself).

"The Good Lord Bird" is a funny, poignant novel about a young boy (nicknamed Onion) who travels with abolitionist John Brown in the months leading up to the Civil War.

McBride will be at Coffman Union Theater at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 8.

The program will also host:

Jeff Sharlet, Edelstein Keller visiting writer and the author of "Radiant Truths," "The Family," and other books of literary journalism. 7 p.m. Oct. 2. Upson Room, Walter Library.

Stacey D'Erasmo, author of "Wonderland" and other books. 7 p.m. Oct. 14, Weisman Art Museum.

A conference on John Berryman at 100, the weekend of Oct. 24-26, at the Elmer L. Andersen Library. Poet Berryman, who died in 1972, won both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award and taught at the University of Minnesota. 

Hunger Relief, with Jess Row. This will be the seventh annual hunger relief benefit, organized by Charles Baxter. Jess Row, author of "Your Face in Mine," will join the English Department's faculty raising money for Second Harvest Heartland. The benefit will be at 7 p.m. Nov 3 in McNamara Alumni Center. Admission is free, with a suggested donation of $5.

Jamaal May, Edelstein Keller visiting writer and author of "Hum," will read at 7 p.m. Nov. 12 in the Upson Room of Walter Library.