If the Frying Pan’s “Rocking Dead” isn’t enough undead to get your fix of braaaains this spring then don’t miss what’s sure to be a lively discussion between authors of the zombie genre at WORD Bookstore. The event celebrates the release of David Wellington’s latest novel, Positive, an epic tale set in a world where “positives” are segregated from society and marked with a plus sign on their forehead, signifying that at any time they could break out with a virus that turns people into ravenous monsters. The panel also includes Max Brallier (Can YOU Survive the Zombie Apocalypse?), and John Campbell (Drifters). Wednesday, April 29, 7 p.m. WORD Bookstore, 126 Franklin Street (Greenpoint).
Whether your tastes lean more toward blockbuster tales of teen violence (Hunger Games, Divergent) or classic high school lit standbys (A Brave New World, Fahrenheit 451), if you like your novels bleak with unsettling premises of troubled futures then this dystopian authors discussion is for you. Panelists will include Porochista Khakpour (The Last Illusion), Emily St. John Mandel (Station Eleven), Lincoln Michel, founding editor of Gigantic, and Shya Scanlon (The Guild of Saint Cooper), moderated by Jason Diamond and Rahawa Haile. Wednesday, April 29, 7 p.m. McNally Jackson Books, 52 Prince Street (Nolita.)
Out By Ten mixes music and stories in “Jilted Lovers, Bad Kids, Dreams, Drums and Desires.” The music of Melaena Cadiz likely covers the “jilted lovers” part while three-time MOTH Story Slam winner David Crabb has the “bad kids” part (“Bad Kid” is the name of his solo show). Rock and roll drummer Jeremy Driesen will share stories from his days touring with Chuck Berry, Billy Idol and Bo Diddley. Tickets are $20 a pop but do include free wine and cheese. Thursday, April 30, 7:30 p.m. Spectrum NYC, 121 Ludlow Street (Lower Manhattan).
Join the author Adam Thirlwell, who will introduce readers to the “wonderfully” detestable unnamed protagonist of his latest novel, Lurid & Cute. Thirlwell’s book begins with its slacker antihero waking up next to his unconscious mistress who’s apparently comatose and covered in blood and vomit due to an overdose of pills that he provided. It’s a mistake that’s hard to cover up as the unemployed protaginist and his wife live with his parents in the suburbs. It’s not a pretty beginning, and supposedly it doesn’t get much better; according to the New York Times the protaganist’s participation in an orgy with his friend Hiro “begins a descent that’s hideous to behold and impossible to put down.” Thursday, April 30, 7 p.m. McNally Jackson Books, 52 Prince Street (Nolita).
Sex Pistols legend John “Johnny Rotten” Lydon will appear at Strand on Thursday-turns out, when he wasn’t busy promoting a rebellious brand of unisex perfume, starring in butter ads and pissing off producers on the reality show I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!, Rotten was working on Anger Is an Energy: My Life Uncensored, a followup to his 1994 memoir Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs. “His tales of a near-Dickensian life in Sixties working-class London suggest how an inchoate rebel found his purpose in punk,” said the Telegraph. The cost of entrance to this event is the purchase of Lydon’s book, which he will sign, but the Strand asks that fans please not bring other memorabilia. Thursday, April 30, 7 p.m. Strand Bookstore, 828 Broadway (East Village).
Special guest Catherine Lacey, author of Nobody is Ever Missing, will be the special guest at this week’s NYU Emerging Writers series at KGB Bar. Nobody, Lacey’s debut novel, garnered rave reviews from The New Yorker, Slate, The New York Times and TimeOut New York. The premise: “Without telling her family, Elyria takes a one-way flight to New Zealand, abruptly leaving her stable but unfulfilling life in Manhattan.” The slim “pitch black comedy,” which the Wall Street Journal said “sustained intensity that is rare in fiction,” sounds like just the thing to pick up for a quick summer read. Friday, May 1, 7 p.m. at KGB Bar. 85 East 4th Street (East Village).