DAVID SHIELDS with CLAIRE DEDERER at Town Hall
Co-presented with TOWN HALL ARTS & CULTURE.
A lively night should happen here as two esteemed writers with longtime ties to the University of Washington hold forth, with center stage taken by David Shields and his wondrous new book, Other People: Takes & Mistakes (Knopf).
“A triumphantly humane book . . . Shields is our elusive, humorous ironist, something like a 21st century Socrates. . . . He’s a master stylist—and has been for a long time, on the evidence of these pieces from throughout his career. The collection can stand as a textbook for contemporary creative nonfiction: erudite, soulful and self-deprecating like John Jeremiah Sullivan; freewheeling and insatiably curious like Geoff Dyer; hilarious and precise like Elif Batuman; and always fresh, clean, vigorous and clear . . . The book’s collective tone . . . is strikingly gentle, amiable and above all unpretentious. . . . All good writers make us feel less alone. But Shields makes us feel better. He takes some of the bad of our everyday life and our culture and the whole inescapable mess of being human and sends it back to us as good.” —Clancy Martin, The New York Times Book Review.
“One would guess from a title like Other People that it would be about how hellish humans are, but it surprisingly turns out to be the opposite: a book about expressing love. There are whole passages that seem lifted from previous Shields books, dunked in molten earth, and allowed to erupt again; the way they come out here, polished, glittering, makes me think this was the ideal context for them all along, not a book straitjacketed into a subject/narrative but a book promiscuously preoccupied.” —Christopher Frizzelle, The Stranger.
$5 tickets are available at the door or in advance via www.townhallseattle.org (1.888.377.4510).