The Best Things to Do This Week, According to Our Editors: May 23

This week we recommend a musical, tacos, a book event and more!

1. Go to Emma Straub’s Author Event


Attending book events has become one of my favorite activities this year, and Boswell Books never disappoints. This week Thursday, the bookstore is co-hosting an event with the Elm Grove Women’s Club to bring New York Times Best-Selling author Emma Straub to talk about her new book, This Time Tomorrow, that came out last week. I’m really looking forward to going! I love hearing from authors about the books they worked so hard on, and it’s always special to meet them afterwards and have them sign a copy of their book. Tickets for the event are $28 and include the book, which will be distributed at the event. 

2. Get Some Tacos at Café Corazon


The other day I was craving a salad, and once my friend and I knew where we were going for dinner – Riverwest’s Café Corazon – I thought, salmon tacos… and salad. Because Corazon’s grilled salmon tacos are just delicious. For me, it’s the crispy, bright pink radish and creamy chipotle aioli. Yum. I also ordered the avocado salad with lightly puckery lime-cumin vinaigrette because, well, gotta eat those greens!

Café Corazon; Photo by Ann Christenson

3. Read A Calling for Charlie Barnes by Joshua Ferris


Reading contemporary fiction is a bit like playing reverse Russian roulette. Five out of six modern novels you pick up are total time-wasters that you’ll regret ever having touched, but every once in a while you stumble on a gem that hits directly on our current malaise. Joshua Ferris is one of the few modern novelists who churns that kind of fiction out. The Dinner PartyTo Rise Again at a Decent Hour and The Unnamed are all great, and his most recent novel, A Calling for Charlie Barnes, continues that streak. The novel follows a 68-year-old father with a string of five failed marriages and more failed businesses behind him. He has just been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and has to grapple with what his life has become before it ends. Despite that grim premise, the novel is quite funny, thoughtful and affecting.

4. See Skylight’s Hunchback of Notre Dame


Dennis DeYoung wrote an amazing musical, and it premiered in Milwaukee at the Skylight Music Theatre on Friday. I had the honor of checking it out (full review to come) on opening night and left with the catchy songs ringing in my ear like the massive bells they used as part of Notre Dame’s set design. This is not your Disney fairytale, but it is compelling and will leave you with love for the characters, songs to play on repeat and excitement to see more from the wealth of talented local actors they put on the stage. Now, if you’re wondering why the rock legend from Styx decided to bring the musical he worked on for 20+ years to Cream City, read this

Ben Gulley (Quasimodo, center) and the cast in Skylight Music Theatre’s production of ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’; Photo by Mark Frohna

5. Listen to “Harry’s House”


On my way to work today, I finally got around to listening to Harry Styles’ new album, “Harry’s House.” While I’m certainly no super fan – like most of the people in my Instagram feed it seems – I do very much enjoy Styles’ music. “As It Was,” his single off the album that came out around a month ago, has been on my spring playlist, and yes, for those wondering I have been singing it in the car when the sun shines, and yes, I do feel invincible when I do that. The new album gives similar vibes. My favorites (so far) off the album are “Daylight,” “Little Freak” and “Keep Driving.” If you’re looking for some chill, moody, groovy new music, I recommend checking it out!