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Verified local business
Prairie Lights Books & Cafe
Book Store$
Today 10AM–6PM
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Poets Dan Beachy-Quick and Sally Keith read from their work - Tonight, 7pm


“This is a book about reading. It offers the kinds of insights into the act that most of us never stop to indulge in, and for that we are eternally grateful.” - Susan Salter Reynolds, Los Angeles Review of Books


“For Keith, discoveries in any discipline—from physics to painting—push humanity forward, and myth is used not as a crutch for meaning, but as an anchor for new discourse on selfhood in our moment.” - Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
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It is the birthday of Constantin Brancusi. "Sleeping Muse" is in the collection of The Art Institute in Chicago.

"Things are not difficult to make; what is difficult is putting ourselves in the state of mind to make them."
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"A child who reads, an adult who thinks."
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Tonight, 7pm - Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter, Professors in The University of Iowa's Nonfiction Writing Program, read from their newly edited collection, UNDERSTANDING THE ESSAY.

"Understanding the Essay is a magnificently intelligent examination of the essay's diverse pleasures, with fresh, revealing looks at writers from Montaigne to David Foster Wallace. Bravo to Patricia Foster and Jeff Porter for providing this important, insightful, readable resource. Teachers, students, and essayists will be bending back pages and marking the margins for years to come." (Dinty W. Moore, author of Crafting the Personal Essay )
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Karen Thompson Walker returns to read from the paperback edition of her highly acclaimed first novel, The Age of Miracles. Tonight, 7pm.

“A stunner.”—Justin Cronin
“A genuinely moving tale that mixes the real and surreal, the ordinary and the extraordinary, with impressive fluency and flair.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“Gripping drama . . . flawlessly written; it could be the most assured debut by an American writer since Jennifer Egan’s Emerald City.”—The Denver Post
“If you begin this book, you’ll be loath to set it down until you’ve reached its end.”—San Francisco Chronicle
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Tonight, 7pm - Writers' Workshop graduate, Aaron McCollough returns to read from his fifth collection of poems, UNDERLIGHT.

"Aaron McCollough's poetry is a living system that is one part the assaulted world and one part the world's conscious surveyor. Underlight is full of such impossible machines all doing emergency work." — Peter Richards
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Today is the birthday of W. H. Auden, and everyday is a good day to read his poems.
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Paul’s Book Club ponders the consciousness of elephants in The White Bone by Barbara Gowdy- Tonight, 7pm
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It is the birthday of Toni Morrison

"I wrote my first novel because I wanted to read it."

If you haven't read THE BLUEST EYE, today's a great day to start!
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It is the birthday of Grant Wood.

In 1905 when he was 14, Wood won third prize in a national Crayola coloring contest with a crayon drawing of oak leaves. He later said that winning this contest gave him the necessary courage to pursue a career in art.
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Looks like he used the "Golden Hour" filter here.
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Tonight, 7pm - Marjorie Celona reads from her highly acclaimed, debut novel, Y.

"I love ambition in a novel. I love humour, audacity, perseverance, craft. And I am deeply grateful when it gets exquisitely blended in a brand-new voice...  Y is an evocative look into what makes a family, and what makes a home, and how they are undeniably helixed together." — Colum McCann, National Book Award-winning author of Let the Great World Spin
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Charles Dickens was born 201 years ago today.

"When I think of it, the picture always rises in my mind, of a summer evening, the boys at play in the churchyard, and I sitting on my bed, reading as if for life.” ― Charles Dickens, David Copperfield
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Contact Information
Map of the business location
15 S Dubuque St Iowa City, IA 52240
15 South Dubuque StreetUSIowaIowa City52240
$Book Store, Books
Book Store
Today 10AM–6PM
Sunday 10AM–6PMMonday 10AM–9PMTuesday 10AM–9PMWednesday 10AM–9PMThursday 10AM–9PMFriday 10AM–9PMSaturday 10AM–9PM
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57 reviews
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1 review
"The manager is passionate about coffee and all baristas seem personable."
"The people who work at this bookstore are incredibly knowledgeable and helpful."
"They have a selection of signature drinks unique to this cafe."
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Brett Sobaski's profile photo
Brett Sobaski
a month ago
I love, love, love the bookstore and the coffee shop. The book store is smaller than Barnes and Noble but the people who work here are book nerds (I mean that as a compliment). They have readings regularly including local authors and it is a pillar of the City being a UNESCO City of Lit. The coffee shop is hands down the best coffee shop in Iowa City area currently. The manager is passionate about coffee and all baristas seem personable. Great espresso and great teas.
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Joshua Rose
in the last week
Took a trip down from Minneapolis because I was told as a book lover I needed to go to this store but it was very plain, not that big, and didn't have anything special. I think Mager's and Quinn in Uptown Minneapolis has more to offer.
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Rebecca Krewer
3 weeks ago
Great selection of books and reading material. Fantastic area for kids
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Sophie Ozolins
3 months ago
Staff are amazing and will always order books you are looking for. Very nice cozy vibes
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Amelia Akers
2 weeks ago
I really love this place! So cozy and their cafe is great! Great book selection! Gave up amazon book selection to support this badass place with my biz!
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Madison Burnett
2 months ago
I went in this morning to get some coffee, ordered an iced vanilla latte. I had to repeat every part of my order because she didn't remember it. I received a hot latte, and when I told her it was supposed to be iced she said 'great' then turned around to make another one. I was no more than ten steps away from the counter and I heard her complaining because I didn't tell her I wanted it iced, although I definitely did. I've never had a problem with service here before, but today I was definitely disappointed by the staff of the cafe, as the employee that served me was disrespectful, and unprofessional.
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Frank Ruiz
5 months ago
The store has got a good collection of books and it's very wells organized. Friendly and very helpful staff. Did not get to see the cafe but it seems it's a great place to read and have a good coffee
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Alex Slusser
7 months ago
Very quaint coffeehouse above a bookstore. A great place to study or stop for a cup of coffee or tea. I got the bergamot tea and it was very good. A great place to relax and pick up a new book.