Literary Calendar: Five spoken word events and readings for the week of June 2-8

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Denver is a book town and a poetry town and a town where stories are told in darkened rooms. But it's easy to lose track of literary events in the bustle of everything else going on in Denver, from breweries to bike rides. We're here to help. Keep reading for a preview of some of this week's hottest readings, slams, open mics and other events on the literary calendar.

See also: Tom Robbins, Tattered Cover Highlands Ranch

Peter Heller The Painter Boulder Book Store 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 3 $5 voucher, good toward purchase of the book

Local author Peter Heller made good with his first novel, The Dog Stars, and seems to be on a roll with his second, The Painter, a story about an artist whose life is torn asunder by violence. The book explores both the immediacy of art-making and the workings of the savage heart as protagonist Jim Stegner abandons the Santa Fe art scene for the wilds of Colorado.

Griots Gathering, with Minor Disturbance and Kevin Sandbloom Gypsy House Cafe 7:30-10 p.m. Tuesday, June 3 $5 suggested donation

The twice-monthly open mic, which meets every first and third Tuesday and honors oral traditions, this week features Denver's winning Minor Disturbance youth slam poetry team as members prepare to travel to this year's Brave New Voices national competition in search of their third championship in three years. Sign up begins at 7:30 p.m. for the 8 p.m. program; donations will help send Minor Disturbance to the annual youth competition in Philadelphia in July. Dominique Sample, a slam champ in her own right, hosts.

Continue reading for more literary events.

Laura Pritchett Stars Go Blue Tattered Cover Colfax Avenue 7 p.m. Thursday, June 5 Free

Fans of Kent Haruf's regional writing will love the writing of Laura Pritchett, whose new novel Stars Go Blue traverses similar territory on the Colorado Front Range. Aging ranchers Renny and Ben Cross, first introduced in Pritchett's 2001 collection Hell's Bottom, Colorado, enter their own decline in sync with the downward arc of ranching in general.

Lighthouse Writers Workshop Lit Fest 2014 Lighthouse Writers Workshop June 6 through June 20 Prices vary; many events free

As summer begins to bloom, Denver's venerable Lighthouse Writers Workshop is revving up for another Lit Fest, a two-week celebration of writers and writing, with workshops, readings, panels, a pop-up book fair by the Tattered Cover and lots of literary schmoozing. And bring the kids -- Lit Fest includes classes for young authors, too, as well as kids' read-along sessions. See the website for a complete listings of classes and events.

Jamie Durie Edible Garden Design Tagawa Gardens  1 p.m. demonstration June 7; book signing and photo ops from 2 to 4 p.m. $40 fee includes the book; $15 for companion tickets

It's the perfect time of year to hobnob with Victory Garden and HGTV gardening celeb Jamie Durie, whose new garden-design book explores ways to integrate garden edibles into your landscape and flower beds. After the book event, stick around and pick up the plants you need to try his suggestions out in your own yard. Call 303-690-4722, ext. 108 or go online to order tickets.

What's the what in Denver's literary world? Visit Westword's Literary Event listings for this week.

To keep up with the Froyd's eye view of arts and culture in Denver, "like" my fan page on Facebook.

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