Writer and teacher (and Kay Sexton Award winner) Carolyn Holbrook has a new book out, illustrated with black-and-white photos by Wing Young Huie (the guy behind "Frogtown," "Lake Street" and "The University Avenue Project"). Their collaboration, "Ordinary People, Extraordinary Journeys," is a collection of profiles of St. Paul community leaders who have founded nonprofits and have taken part in a program called the St. Paul Leadership Initiatives in Neighborhoods.
The book includes profiles of Nghi Si Huynh of the Asian American Press; E.G. Bailey of Minnesota Spoken Word; David T.C. Ellis of High School for the Recording Arts; Diane Espaldon of Mu Performing Arts, and others. It was published by North Star Press of St. Cloud and the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits, and there are a number of events planned. Go to www.ordinarypeoplejourneys.org.
• "Ascension Theory," by Christopher Bolin, has been published by the University of Iowa Press. Bolin lives in St. Joseph, Minn., and teaches at the College of St. Benedict and St. John's University.
• Curated by Michael Kiesow Moore, the fifth season of the Birchbark Books Reading Series continues this month with readings by four poets. Jill Breckenridge ("Miss Priss and the Con Man"), Sharon Chmielarz ("Love From the Yellowstone Trail"), Freya Manfred ("The Blue Dress") and Morgan Grayce Willow ("Dodge & Scramble") will read at 7 p.m. Nov. 20 at Bockley Gallery, 2123 W. 21st St. in Minneapolis.
• Blurbed by Bill Clinton and honored by Writer's Digest, "Zero Chance of Passage," by former state senator Ember Reichgott Junge, has been named the grand-prize winner in the 2013 Self-Published Books Awards competition sponsored by Writer's Digest. The book is a memoir and history of the charter-school movement.
• "The Christmas Wish," by Lori Evert, has been published by Random House. The story of a girl named Anja is told through full-color photographs by Evert's husband (and Anja's father), Minneapolis photographer Per Breiehagen.
• A novel by John D. Barbour, professor of religion at St. Olaf College in Northfield, has been published by Resource Publications. "Renunciation" is the story of two brothers who are involved in new religious movements in the 1970s.
• "A Star in the Face of the Sky," by former Minneapolis resident David Haynes, has been published by New Rivers Press. Haynes holds degrees from Macalester and Hamline and teaches at SMU in Dallas.
• "Water Can Be …," by Minnesota Book Award-winning writer Laura Purdie Salas, will be published in April by Millbrook Press. It follows Salas' "A Leaf Can Be …," a finalist for a Minnesota Book Award.