News & Reviews
Authors Amirrezvani, Gaiman, Wolff featured at SF Litquake events
Edited Press Release
Litquake, San Francisco's annual literary festival, is now underway at
venues across The City with a weeklong series of author readings,
presentations and parties. Here are some key Litquake events that
readers will find interesting. Many Litquake events are free, so check
out their website for a full list of events that range from formal
author readings and workshops to the chaotic pub crawl with a literary
Neil Gaiman at Kabuki Theatre
Today (Sunday, October 5) Neil Gaiman comes to San Francisco to read
from his new novel The Graveyard Book. For those not in the know,
Gaiman is listed in the Dictionary of Literary Biography as one of the
top ten living post-modern writers, and is a prolific creator of works
of prose, poetry, film, journalism, comics, song lyrics, and drama.
His newest acclaimed full-length novel for middle-grade readers is sure
to also captivate his legion of adult fans. Co-sponsored by The
Booksmith, the reading will be held at the Kabuki Sundance Theaters,
1881 Post Street, from 3 pm to 4:30 pm, and admission price includes a
signed first edition. Tickets are available only at The Booksmith store
on Haight Street, or by calling 415-863-8688 or 800-493-7323.
Voices From the Muslim World at
On Monday, October 6 the Institute Library
once again hosts a lively
Litquake panel discussion, "East of Istanbul: Voices from the Muslim
World," where authors from Afghanistan and Iran read from their books
and discuss what it means to have emerged from Muslim nations.
panel includes Anita Amirrezvani (pictured left) -- who was nominated
for this year's Orange Prize but lost out to eventual winner Rose Tremain
-- Persis Karim, Niloufar Talebi, and
this year's "One City One Book" honoree Tamim Ansary. Moderator will be
radio journalist Sandip Roy, host of the program "Up Front," which airs
weekly on KALW. Tickets are $12 at the door, and free for library
members. More info is here.
And the 2008 Barbary Coast Award
goes to Tobias Wolff
On Tuesday, October 7 Litquake will present its second annual Barbary
Coast Award to author and Stanford professor Tobias Wolff, in an
impressive all-star tribute. Hosted and co-presented by the fabulous
new Contemporary Jewish Museum, the lineup includes KQED's Michael
Krasny as emcee, Tom Barbash, Stephen Elliott, Adam Johnson, Tom
Kealey, Graham Leggat, Ann Packer, Tom Perrotta, George Saunders, and a
special performance by Word for Word Performing Arts Company. Museum is
at 736 Mission Street, doors open at 7 pm, and show starts at 7:30 pm.
Tickets are available online from the museum. More info on this event
Not Your Mother's Book Club
returns to Litquake
The Bay Area monthly literary salon for teenagers hits the festival on
Wednesday, October 8 with the "Kick-Ass All-Girl Graphic Novel Panel"
at the Books Inc. store in Opera Plaza. Teen lit comes to life with a
lively discussion from writers/illustrators Cecil Castellucci, Devin
Grayson, LeUyen Pham, Trina Robbins, and moderator Shaenon K. Garrity.
Event starts at 7 pm and admission is free. For more info about NYMBCTM
and all the cool things they do, check out their website.
Commonwealth Club doubles down
This year the esteemed Commonwealth Club will host two separate panel
discussions for Litquake. The first, on Monday, October 6, is entitled
"Scandal, Intrigue, and Drama in California History," co-presented by
the Commonwealth Club and co-sponsored by the California Historical
Society and the SF Museum and Historical Society. Authors of three
groundbreaking new books discuss the great stories of the Golden State:
Frances Dinkelspiel, Ethan Rarick, and Rick Wartzman. Moderator is
Julia Flynn Siler, author of The House of Mondavi: The Rise and Fall of
an American Wine Dynasty.
And on Thursday, October 9, the Commonwealth Club and Litquake present
"Battling for the Environment: Stories from the Front Lines," where
leading authors explain a world in environmental crisis and what we can
do to help save it. With Sebastian Copeland, Claire Hope Cummings,
Thomas M. Kostigen, Jerry Mander, and Christie Matheson, and moderated
by S.F. Chronicle environment journalist Jane Kay.
for both nights.
Kierkegaard makes inaugural
Litquake appearance - sort of
Yes, that's correct, Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard finally casts
his shadow over the festival, in the form of his most famous work
Either/Or -- which will be the theme for this year's short stories
night on October 8. It's a stellar lineup of authors writing original
stories and reading them: Andrew Foster Altschul, Sean Beaudoin, Nona
Caspers, Ben Greenman, and Matthew Iribarne.
As always, the night is held at Varnish Fine Art, in proximity to their
excellent wine bar, and admission is free. A classic Kierkegaard quote
for your next dinner party: "It is the duty of the human understanding
to understand that there are things which it cannot understand, and
what those things are."
Lit Crawl 2008
Close out Litquake properly with a three-hour literary crawl through
the heart of San Francisco’s Mission District's bookstores, cafes,
nightclubs and -- of course -- bars. Three phases (6-7 pm; 7:15-8:15;
8:30-9:30 pm) will carry you through the festival's version of a
traditional pub crawl. All Lit Crawl events are free. See here
for specific venues and age restrictions.
For more information and the full Litquake schedule, head to Litquake.org.
Litquake, San Francisco's annual literary festival, was founded by Bay
Area writers in order to put on a week-long literary spectacle for book
lovers, complete with cutting-edge panels, unique cross-media events,
and hundreds of readings. Since its founding in 1999, the festival has
presented close to 1,400 author appearances for an audience of over
32,000 in its lively and inclusive celebration of San Francisco's
thriving contemporary literary scene. Litquake seeks to foster interest
in literature, perpetuate a sense of literary community, and provide a
vibrant forum for Bay Area writing as a complement to the city's music,
film, and cultural festivals. Litquake runs from October 3-11, 2008.
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