September 2020

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09/01/2020 - 9:00am

Virtual Event
Arundhati Roy with Nick Estes
Virtual Event
We are excited and most grateful to help present this publication day program with one of the most essential, vital, eloquent writers of our time, Arundhati Roy. This program, which will be streamed everywhere by way of our friends, and her publisher, at Haymarket Books, airing in Seattle at 9 a.m. and at 9:30 p.m. in Delhi (where we believe she will be), is occasioned by publication of Arundhati Roy’s powerful, timely new book of essays, Azadi: Freedom. Facism. Fiction. In so doing, it connects Arundhati Roy to a Seattle that was perhaps the first place in the US to embrace her debut book, The God of Small Things, before the acclaim and adulation (including the Booker Prize), that would come. And has similarly taken her books and Seattle visits to heart over the years since, most recently when she visited for her brilliant second novel, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness. She is to be joined in conversation by another who came to Elliott Bay with his first book, author/professor/activist Nick Estes. A citizen of the Lower Bruhle Sioux Tribe, a professor of American Studies at the University of New Mexico, co-founder of The Red Nation, he is author of Our History is the Future: Standing Rock Versus the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Long Tradition of Indigenous Resistance and co-editor of Standing with Standing Rock: Voices from the #NoDAPL Movement.  Azadi’s piercing, bracing new essays, come after the publication of last year’s volume of Arundhati Roy’s collected non-fiction, My Seditious Heart, an incredible collection twenty years in the writing. The new book tellingly gives us the horror of the times we are in, with authoritarian grabs for power, with the planet evermore in peril, up to and including the Coronavirus and its coming upon the world. It also gives voice to beauty, resistance,  possibility, persistence, in ways both intimate and vast.  "Roy’s ... nonfictional engagement with the conflicts and traumas of a heedlessly globalized world has manifested the virtues of an unflinching emotional as well as political intelligence.... In an age of intellectual logrolling and mass-manufactured infotainment, she continues to offer bracing ways of seeing, thinking and feeling."—Pankaj Mishra. "No writer today, in India or anywhere in the world, writes with the kind of beautiful, piercing prose in defense of the wretched of the earth that Roy does.... Roy the essayist embodies the legalistic but humanistic ruthlessness of a public defender, the wit and wordplay of a poet, a comrade who takes no injustice as a given."—Jacobin. This program is co-presented by Seattle-based Tasveer (www.tasveer.org) as part of TSAL: Tasveer South Asian Litfest (October 18-24). Please join us! Event Link
 

09/02/2020 - 7:30pm

Virtual Event
Ainissa Ramirez
Virtual Event
A materials scientist who has also become an acclaimed science writer, Ainissa Ramirez makes this virtual appearance after an earlier scheduled ‘real’ appearance had to be cancelled because of what is all upon us. She is ‘here’ with her terrific new book, The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another (MIT Press). “It's easy to find a book that recounts the society-shaping powers of important inventions, but much harder to find one that peels back the unintended consequences of those creations, and reveals the forgotten innovators who were part of their stories. It's fortunate, then, that Ainissa Ramirez has written exactly that book, and done so with such rich and compelling prose. The Alchemy of Us carries important lessons about the cost of progress, the nature of invention, and importance of diversity. It's an important read in a time of upheaval.” - Ed Yong. “We live in a world so dominated by our own inventions that, as Ainissa Ramirez observes, we've reinvented ourselves to accommodate them. The Alchemy of Us is at once timely, informative, and fascinating—a totally compelling work.” - Elizabeth Kolbert. Presented by Town Hall Science in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company   Event Link  
 

09/03/2020 - 7:30pm

Virtual Event
David Allen Sibley
Virtual Event
"Can birds smell?" "Is this the same cardinal that was at my feeder last year?" "Do robins 'hear' worms?" In What It's Like to Be a Bird: From Flying to Nesting, Eating to Singing--What Birds Are Doing, and Why ( Sibley Guides/Knopf ), David Sibley answers the most frequently asked questions about the birds we see most often. This special, large-format volume is geared as much to nonbirders as it is to the out-and-out obsessed, covering more than two hundred species and including more than 330 new illustrations by the author. While its focus is on familiar backyard birds--blue jays, nuthatches, chickadees--it also examines certain species that can be fairly easily observed, such as the seashore-dwelling Atlantic puffin. David Sibley's exacting artwork and wide-ranging expertise bring observed behaviors vividly to life. A visit from David Sibley, even by virtual means, is always a special occasion for us and given that the pandemic has sent more of us outdoors and interacting with the avian world, timely.  "Having painted them all in every possible plumage permutation, evenly lighted and in profile, Mr. Sibley’s joy in creating chiaroscuro tableaux of birds feeding, flying and tending their young is palpable . . . Expect to be surprised at the mental and physical capabilities of birds." —Julie Zickefoose, The Wall Street Journal.    David Allen Sibley is the author and illustrator of the series of successful guides to nature that bear his name, including The Sibley Guide to Birds. He is a recipient of the Roger Tory Peterson Award for Promoting the Cause of Birding from the American Birding Association and the Linnaean Society of New York's Eisenmann Medal. We have a limited number of signed bookplates available for those purchasing What It's Like to Be a Bird. Specify “signed bookplate” when ordering.    Event Link  
 

09/04/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Margaret Randall with Cedar Sigo
Virtual Event
Sometime last summer, we planned a spring launch event for Margaret Randall’s memoir I Never Left Home: Feminist, Revolutionary (Duke University Press). Though an in person event is not possible, we’re glad to welcome this esteemed poet and activist to our Virtual Stage to speak about her work and her life. The author of over 150 books, including volumes of poetry, oral history, works in translation and political writing, she was awarded the Poet of Two Hemispheres Prize by Poesía Paralelo Cero in Quito, Ecuador; Cuba's Haydée Santamaría medal, and an honorary doctorate of letters from the University of New Mexico. She served in the Nicaraguan Ministry of Culture in the mid 1950s, participated in the 1968 student movement in Mexico, befriended Cuban revolutionaries, raised a family, came out as a lesbian, worked as an educator and in 1989 successfully fought an effort by the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service to deport her and revoke her U.S. citizenship for “subversive writing.” Her books include: Exporting Revolution: Cuba's Global Solidarity, Against Atrocity and Only the Road / Solo el Camino: Eight Decades of Cuban Poetry. “Margaret Randall's life is the story of our twentieth century, with all of its lucid wonder, its dark passages and contradictions. Illuminating and enthralling.” — Achy Obejas, author of The Tower of the Antilles. "A revolutionary woman and remarkable writer places her long journey within the context of her conflicted past and our own divided present. . . . A striking remembrance by an intellectual whose radical, fierce nature is unflappable." — Kirkus Reviews. Margaret Randall will appear in conversation with Washington poet Cedar Sigo. Cedar Sigo’s books include Royals and Language Arts (both published by Wave Press). He served as a contributing editor and contributor to When the Light of the World Was Subdued, Our Songs Came Through: A Norton Anthology of Native Nations Poetry, which was edited by United States Poet Laureate Joy Harjo. This book includes the work of over 160 poets from nearly 100 Indigenous Nations.   Event link  
 

09/04/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Thom Hartmann
Virtual Event
Thom Hartman, four-time winner of the Project Censored Award, New York Times bestselling author of thirty-two books, and America's #1 progressive talk radio show host speaks about the latest volume in his popular and informative “Hidden Histories” series. The Hidden History of Monopolies: How Big Business Destroyed the American Dream (Berrett-Koehler) takes on the monopolies that dominate and control much of our economic system. Noting that monopolies have massive political power, he examines the consequences of monopoly control of industries such as agriculture, healthcare, the media and more and suggests some commonsense, historically rooted measures such as revitalizing antitrust regulation, taxing great wealth, and getting money out of politic.  “Never one to shy away from the truth, Thom Hartmann has written books that are inspiring, wise, and compelling. His work lights the way to a better America.” ―Van Jones, CNN political contributor and New York Times bestselling author of Beyond the Messy Truth. Previous books in this series have addressed voting rights, guns and the Second Amendment and the Supreme Court.   event link  
 
 
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09/08/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Jonathan M. Berman
Virtual Event
In Anti-Vaxxers: How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement (MIT Press), science writer Jonathan M. Berman explores the development and use of vaccines and the history of anti-vaccination movements, noting that while “lists of facts” have rarely served to convert opposition to public health measures, other approaches might be successful. Please join us tonight for a lively and informative conversation about this vital topic. “Science professor Berman debuts with a useful guide for readers concerned about the opposition to vaccinations. He surveys the history of vaccine hesitancy and the varying motives behind it, noting that, for instance, a young Mahatma Gandhi opposed the Raj's heavy-handed approach to vaccinating its Indian subjects, but later changed his mind after a smallpox outbreak. Berman then discusses recent opposition to vaccination, persuasively eviscerating claims that it causes autism, most infamously in a 1998 British medical paper later proven a fraud. He also examines the role social media and celebrities have played in keeping these claims alive, noting that Russian intelligence operations against Ukraine extended to promoting anti-vaccine Twitter accounts to that country's population. The book's greatest value comes from its insights into how common cognitive errors can lead even the well-informed to see false correlations between vaccination and health problems. Berman also provides practical suggestions about how best to engage, and potentially convert, vaccine opponents, arguing that "people change their own minds; we can't do it for them." Given hopes for a Covid-19 vaccine, this accomplished exploration of a vexing topic couldn't be more timely.” - Publishers Weekly.  Jonathan Berman is Assistant Professor in the Department of Basic Sciences at NYITCOM-Arkansas. His writing has been featured on New Scientist, Harvard Business Review, TEDxSanAntonio, and others. An active science communicator, he served as national co-chair of the 2017 March for Science.      Event Link  
 

09/09/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Margaret Atwood
Virtual Event
Our friends at Seattle Arts & Lectures host this special livestream with Booker Prize-winning author - novelist, poet, essayist - Margaret Atwood. She will have a new book of poems later this November (Dearly, Ecco, November 10), but occasioning this evening is publication of last year’s heralded, Booker Prize-winning sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, The Testaments (Anchor).  “Margaret Atwood’s powers are on full display . . . Everyone should read The Testaments.” —Los Angeles Times. “In The Testaments, Atwood’s compelling sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale — which takes place a decade and a half later — [central character]Offred makes only the briefest of appearances, speaking a scant three sentences. But she has attained almost mythic status in Gilead, where she’s been declared a terrorist and enemy of the state: … Atwood’s sheer assurance as a storyteller makes for a fast, immersive narrative that’s as propulsive as it is melodramatic.” —Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times. Even online, we imagine Margaret Atwood to be as engaging a presence as she has been in numerous memorable Seattle appearances over the years, a good number of them hosted by Elliottt Bay.  A writer truly to reckon with - and celebrate. Tickets include a paperback copy of The Testaments, which will be shipped by Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 

09/09/2020 - 7:30pm

Virtual Event
Alice Wong with Elsa Sjunneson
Virtual Event
 One in Five people in the U.S. lives with a disability, either apparent or less so. Alice Wong, editor of Disability Visibility: First-Person Stories from the Twenty-First Century (Vintage) writes that this collection began with a collection of stories. Eventually partnering with Storycorps, she created the Disability Visibility Project (of over 140 oral histories) and she then brought together the collection of essays and stories that became this book. Beginning with activist Harriet McBryde Johnson’s account of her debate with Peter Singer (over her personhood), Disability Visibility features  a wide range of voices writing about their experiences living with disability. We’re sure that accolades and a broad readership will follow and we’re honored to participate in tonight’s event. Alice Wong is a disability activist, media maker, and consultant. She is the Founder and Director of the Disability Visibility Project, which aims to amplify media created by people with disabilities, and she has been one of the leading partners in the #CripTheVote campaign. She is also a co-partner on the DisabledWriters.com, #CripLit, and Access Is Love projects. She has been published in the New York Times, Vox, Bitch Media, Teen Vogue, and others.  Hugo and Aurora award-winning editor Elsa Sjunneson is a deafblind hurricane in a vintage dress. Her nonfiction editorial work has appeared in Uncanny Magazine and Fireside Magazine. As an author, her work has appeared in CNN Opinion, Tor.com, The Boston Globe, and numerous other venues. In addition to editorial and authorial pursuits, she educates authors on writing disability respectfully.   Event Link  
 

09/10/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Aimee Nezhukumatathil & John Freeman
Virtual Event
If things go as we imagine this might, this evening’s program will feature Aimee Nezhukumatathil, one of the most vital poets of her generation, doing this virtual reading program with her first book of prose, the dazzling, animated book that is World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments (Milkweed).  She, presumably at home in Mississippi, will be joined by John Freeman, whom we think will be linked in from London. Most known for extraordinary work as an editor and essayist, he is also becoming increasingly recognized as a poet of note. Copper Canyon Press, which now also publishes Aimee Nezhukumatathil’s poetry (Oceanic), has just published John Freeman’s second collection, The Park, following his earlier Maps. This program should feature strong talk about the planet, and some excellent poetry. "Aimee Nezhukumatathil's World of Wonders is the first book to make me feel like a firefly as much as it reminds me I'm still a black boy playing in Central Mississippi woods. The book walks. It sprints. It leaps. Most importantly, the book lingers in a world where power, people, and the literal outside wrestle painfully, beautifully. This book is a world of wonders. This book is about to shake the Earth." ―Kiese Laymon. “Freeman deftly stages his urbane poems of rumination over, even celebration of, the complexities of life… Delight and humor abound… There is wistfulness in these poems, though they never become mired in shadows of what is lost or gone.” —Booklist. John Freeman’s other recent books include Dictionary of the Undoing (MCD x FSG), a lexicon of our political and cultural moment, and an anthology of writers around the world, writing on our climate crisis moment, A Tale of Two Planets (Penguin). The newest edition of his bi-annual anthology, Freeman’s (Grove), on Love, will be out later in the fall.   Event Link  
 

09/10/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual event
Sen. Chris Murphy with Eric Liu
Virtual event
Presently in his second term as U.S. Senator from Connecticut, Chris Murphy took the horrific Newton school shooting, which happened as he came to office, and has made gun violence and control a true focus of his service in the Senate. He visits virtually this evening with his new book, The Violence Inside Us: A Brief History of an Ongoing American Tragedy (Random House).  “An engrossing, moving, and utterly motivating account of the human stakes of gun violence in America . . . From his earliest days in the Senate … Chris Murphy has fearlessly challenged the fatalism of those who have resigned themselves to mass shootings. All the while he has exposed the cynicism of those in America who put profit over people. With a historian’s talent for narrative and a memoirist’s gift for introspection, Murphy shines a light on the men and women who will not rest until American laws are changed to protect our citizens, while offering an inspiring blueprint for how this struggle can—and will—be won.”—Samantha Power. Presented by Elliott Bay Book Company, Seattle University College of Arts and Sciences, and Town Hall Civics.   Event Link  
 

09/10/2020 - 7:30pm

Virtual Event
Erin Brockovich with Suzanne Boothby
Virtual Event
If this evening was Town Hall in ‘physical’ action, this would likely have been a matter of one author upstairs and one downstairs. Instead, coming virtually and almost in sequence, the latter program this evening renowned environmental crusader and activist Erin Brockovich with new book on a timely, vital matter affecting everyone, Superman’s Not Coming: Our National Water Crisis and What We the People Can Do About It (Pantheon, co-written with Suzanne Boothby). “Two decades after the movie that made her a national celebrity, Brockovich urges readers to confront a scary reality . . . [She] offers an easy-to-understand guide to common water pollutants, and she shares stories of citizen activists . . . The narrative’s real power comes from her clarion calls to regular citizens to get involved in the fight for safe water . . . she offers several concrete suggestions for how people can gauge the safety of their own drinking water and stand up to corporations and politicians . . . a call to arms about the global water crisis from a sharp, plainspoken activist.” —Kirkus Reviews. Presented by Town Hall Science in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 
 
 
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09/16/2020 - 5:00pm

Virtual Event
Robert Michael Pyle & Scott Russell Sanders
Virtual Event
What would be a congenial, spirited occasion in-person should also be that way virtually, as two acclaimed chroniclers of our place in a larger world, Grays River’s Robert Michael Pyle, and southern Indiana’s Scott Russell Sanders do this joint program for newly published books. With Bob Pyle, who has been with us ever since his award-winning debut book of prose, Wintergreen, it is Nature Matrix: New and Selected Essays, and with Scott Russell Sanders, it is The Way of Imagination: Essays (both new books from Counterpoint). "'Many are given to write; few, to really Write.' In so declaring, Robert Michael Pyle presages his own craft, 'really' writing to beautiful effect in Nature Matrix. As he weaves through groves of prose and near verse to scale grand mountains, then rounds the next bend and descends to revel in small beauties--bird, blossom, and butterfly--Pyle opines eloquently to awaken us to wildness and the necessity of its care … Savor the slow read, as Nature Matrix is a master noticer's lifework." --J. Drew Lanham. "The Way of Imagination is a dazzling, often heartbreaking, and ultimately healing meditation on the power of art to confront the existential threat that human greed and violence has foisted upon the earth. Scott Russell Sanders has written a vital book for this dark moment in history, demonstrating the truth of his insight that 'imagination keeps us from being trapped in the present arrangement of things.'” - Christopher Merrill. Presented by Elliott Bay Book Company in association with Orion.   Event Link  
 

09/16/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Andrew Imbrie with Jen Psaki
Virtual Event
A senior fellow at Georgetown University’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology who served under John Kerry in the State Department during the Obama administration, Andrew Imbrie virtually visits with his recently published book, Power on the Precipice: The Six Choices America Faces in a Turbulent World (Yale University Press). “An important book for our turbulent times. Imbrie shows how America has provided principled leadership in this world and points to ways we can be smart and visionary in the future. It is an elegantly written tribute to the promise of America and a call to action to reclaim that promise once again.”—Walter Isaacson. In conversation with Andew Imbrie will be Jen Psaki, CNN commentator, also presently at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and formerly the White House Communications Director during the Obama administration. Presented by Town Hall Civics in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 
 
 
 
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09/21/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Ayad Akhtar with Maria Semple
Virtual Event
One of the year’s most anticipated novels - even before this year starting turning into what has become this year - prize-winning novelist and playwright Ayad Akhtar’s powerful Homeland Elegies (Little, Brown) gets virtually welcomed to readers here, with much-loved Seattle author Maria Semple joining in conversation. Novels don’t always have both timelessness and timely urgency to them; Homeland Elegies most certainly does. “Akhtar reckons with the promises and deceptions of the American dream in this wrenching work of autofiction. The narrator, Ayad, was, like the author, born in Staten Island to Pakistani immigrant parents and raised in Wisconsin, and wrote a Pulitzer-winning play … Ayad traces his often complicated personal, philosophical, and political stance toward an America in which he sees himself as ‘other.’ In the process, Ayad responds to criticism of his past writings for rationalizing violence committed by Muslims; critiques capitalism while acknowledging how it benefits him; and confronts his own internalized conflation of race and sex. Most often, these issues are viewed through the lens of family, especially his parents ... Akhtar’s work is a provocative and urgent examination of the political and economic conditions that shape personal identity, especially for immigrants and communities of color. With an audacious channeling of Philip Roth’s warts-and-all approach to the story of an American writer and his family, this tragicomedy is a revelation.” - Publishers Weekly. Ayad Akhtar is the author of the novel, American Dervish, and of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play Disgraced, as well as award-winning and -nominated plays such as Junk, The Who & The What, and The Invisible Hand. Maria Semple is author, most recently, of Where’d You Go Bernadette and Today Will Be Different. This should be something. Co-presented with Tasveer.  Event Link  
 
 

09/23/2020 - 7:00pm

Virtual Event
Donna Miscolta with Kathleen Alcalá
Virtual Event
We are delighted to help draw celebratory attention to this book launch for acclaimed Seattle fiction writer Donna Miscolta. The award-winning author of an earlier novel, When the de la Cruz Family Danced, and book of stories, Hola and Goodbye, she tonight is seeing a brilliant new book of stories, Living Color: Angie Rubio Stories (Jaded Ibis Press), into the world. With her in conversation will be onetime Hugo House-writer-in-residence, and also recipient of numerous awards and honors, Kathleen Alcalá, whose most recent book is The Deepest Roots. “It’s been a long time since I’ve fallen in love with a character as deeply as I fell for Living Color’s Angie Rubio. Donna Miscolta writes gorgeous, luminous sentences, at turns funny and heartbreaking, searing and wise, and—through the observations of one smart, shy, awesome young girl—she deftly exposes the casual and systemic racism of the 1960s and 70s. This is fiction at its very best: intimate, universal, historical, and relevant as hell to our current era. Angie Rubio is my new favorite protagonist; prepare for her to steal your heart.” —Sharma Shields. And Kathleen Alcalá herself with praise: “Angie Rubio shows us how to survive as a smart girl-of-color in a world gone mad during the 1960s. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll be glad the selfie had not yet been invented.”  Presented by Hugo House.   Event Link  
 

09/24/2020 - 6:30pm

Virtual Event
Naomi Shihab Nye
Virtual Event
Benefit for PONGO Poetry Project One of this country’s foremost poets, a poet who has had her work published in collections for forty years now, Naomi Shihab Nye does a virtual visit to support the vital work of non-profit Pongo Teen Writing’s Poetry Project in a two-part program. Naomi Shihab Nye is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, is the author of many books of poems, including some for younger readers. Her most recent is last year’s The Tiny Journalist (BOA). “On every page, Shihab Nye's insistent call is the same: people, all people, deserve to live safe and healthy lives, free from fear and violence. She mourns, rages, takes politicians to task, but always lands on the side of compassion.” - Shelf Awareness.   Event Link  
 

09/24/2020 - 7:00pm

Virtual Event
Eileen Myles
Virtual Event
Any way and anytime Eileen Myles can pay Seattle a visit is a welcome one. A lively, compelling presence in-person, they are making this visit virtually, in the way of all things this season, this time occasioned by their newest book, For Now (Yale University Press). Published in Yale’s still-new Why I Write series, following Patti Smith and Karl Ove Knausgaard, For Now is Eileen Myles’ tracing of their evolution as a writer - one, we will say, who has excelled in numerous forms. “Myles possesses, in abundance, two qualities of the highest value for a writer, irreverence and relentless curiosity.” ―New York Times Book Review.   “Writing and drawing, drawing and writing. Copying copying copying. God. God being something that happens in the repetition. Again and again.” - Eileen Myles. Eileen Myles’ other most recent books include Afterglow: A Dog Memoir and a volume of new poems, Evolution. Presented by Hugo House in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 

09/25/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Lan Cao & Harlan Margaret Van Cao
Virtual Event
A novelist - and professor of law  - who has read at Elliott Bay for her well-received earlier books, Monkey Bridge and The Lotus and the Storm, Lan Cao has now collaborated with her daughter, Harlan Margaret Van Cao, on a joint memoir that powerfully and movingly tells a story of one coming to this country as a teenage refugee and making her way, and another, growing up as a daughter of that mother’s experience, who must learn to chart her own way, in Family in Six Tones: A Refugee Mother, An American Daughter (Viking). For this virtual program, they will be joined by their friend, beloved and much-honored writer Monique Truong. “Family in Six Tones is a brilliant duet and a moving exploration of the American immigrant experience. Mother and daughter speak to each other across generations and cultures, revealing and bridging their differences with patience and hard-won trust. Their astonishingly heartfelt dialogue offers a model for sharing the deeper truths that so often get ignored or forgotten.”—Ruth Ozeki. “Startling and necessary, Family in Six Tones takes us deep into the singular bond of a mother and daughter, fiercely connected by a love wrought out of loss and the will to create anew. This memoir will forever trouble the water of the American Dream, complicating it and clarifying it of the myths and masks of survival, assimilation, and success.  It reminds us that Vietnamese refugees, like so many who call this country home, are not amnesiacs. We carry within us memories of faraway places and discarded lives. Thus our dreams here are haunted, unsettled, and yet we still dream.”—Monique Truong. Presented by Elliott Bay Book Company in association with Kandelia (formerly Vietnamese Friendship Association, www.kandelia.org), Friends of Little Saigon (www.friendsoflittlesaigon.org), and DVAN/Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network (www.dvan.org). 
 
 
Event Link
 
 

09/26/2020 - 2:00pm

Virtual Event
Peace Adzo Medie with Sally Nuamah
Virtual Event
We are delighted to present this afternoon (Seattle time) program with a writer who is coming into the book world in a big way this year. Ghanaian novelist Peace Adzo Medie, also a scholar, presently teaching at Bristol University in the UK, has two seriously good books out this year. The one she is virtually visiting us for a debut novel that’s making quite a splash, His Only Wife (Algonquin). Her other book is less likely to be found in bookstores, major academic title that it is, but to note: Global Norms and Local Action: The Campaigns to End Violence Against Women in Africa (Oxford University Press). Joining Peace Adzo Medie in conversation this afternoon is Northwestern University professor, filmmaker, and author Sally Nuamah, recently the author of How Girls Achieve. His Only Wife is the story of an indomitable young woman, Afi Tekpke, and how it goes for her with an arranged marriage. “Peace Adzo Medie’s mesmerizing debut novel lives up to both the power of its first sentence and the promise of its author’s first name. This is not a book to read with one eye on a beach volleyball tournament; it’s a story to soak up in silence, on a long, cloudy afternoon when you have time to think . . . At a time when adventure is scarce, Medie gives you a lot to look forward to, think about and be grateful for.”—The New York Times Book Review.   “A hilarious, page-turning, sharply realized portrait of modern womanhood in the most infuriating of circumstances. A gem of a debut.”— Wayétu Moore. Presented by Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 
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09/27/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Bruce and Ju-Chan Fulton
Virtual Event
Among the pre-eminent translators of Korean literature into English, Bruce and Ju-Chan have been producing superb novels and anthologies of Korean fiction into English for decades. Tonight is a presentation for their newest collaboration, Kim Soom’s landmark novel, One Left (University of Washington Press). A major writer in the ranks of Korean literary figures, Kim Soom, this novel, the first of hers to be published in English, played a pioneering role when first published for its depiction of Korean women forced into horrific sexual slavery under Japanese military occupation. “Reading One Left is a journey marked by grief, outrage, and the power of a voice carefully kept silent. The use of quotations from survivors—gleaned from oral histories, media reports, and all manner of sources—is at once surreal and solid. It grounds readers in documented history, while pulling them into the imagined solitary musings of a fictional survivor. This is a must read.” - Ji-Yeon Yuh. Presented by Town Hall Arts & Culture in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 

09/28/2020 - 7:00pm

Virtual Event
Close to Home: Jourdan Imani Keith & Joseph Manson
Virtual Event
Our Close to Home series continues with a look at the ways in which people interact with and experience the nearby natural world. Tonight we feature two local naturalists who have helped adults and children connect with nature in Seattle’s neighborhoods. Equity and social justice are important concerns when doing this work. Jourdan Imani Keith has served as Seattle Poet Populist, Seattle Public Library’s first Naturalist-in-Residence and she is currently the Seattle Civic Poet for 2019-2021. A student of Sonia Sanchez, she is a playwright, naturalist, educator, and storyteller whose work blends the textures of political, personal and natural landscapes to offer voices from the margins of American lives. She’ll speak today on captivity: the moments that captivitate us, beauty, nearby art, other moments and living things and the experience of Women and Whales in the Pacific Northwest. After serving in multiple capacities at the Seward Park Audubon Center, Joseph Manson became the Center’s director in 2015. His vision as director is to make nature-based education available to all students in local schools and provide programs for all that facilitate positive experiences in Seattle’s wild spaces. The only Black director of more than 40 Audubon centers across the nation, he  has also served on National Audubon’s Strategic Plan Committee and is a member of Audubon’s Diversity & Inclusion Cohort. He’ll speak tonight  about experiences in nature and working to make wild experiences more inclusive. More about Seattle Civic Poet Jourdan Imani Keith. More about Joseph Manson and the Seward Park Audubon Center.   Event Link  
 

09/29/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Shayla Lawson with Hanif Abdurraqib
Virtual Event
Along with our friends and colleagues at Langston, we are delighted to be helping present what should be an enlivening, provocative program as poet (I Think I’m Ready to See Frank Ocean) Shayla Lawson celebrates publication of her riveting debut book of essays, This is Major: Notes on Diana Ross, Dark Girls and Being Dope (Harper Perennial). This book is major. Helping make this even more of an occasion is that Shayla Lawson will be joined in conversation with Hanif Abdurraqib, he who also knows working in a multitude of written forms, poetry, and prose, and places in-between.  “Written as a prose love poem in essays to black girlhood, black womanhood, and black femmehood, Shayla Lawson’s fourth book is required reading for all, but especially for black women and girls trying to hold space for their whole selves, the whole of their blackness. Lawson lunges into full-bodied critique and historicization of the hurt of white patriarchal supremacy and the white gaze with cunning wit and a fresh scalpel.” -Nafissa Thompson-Spires. "Shayla Lawson’s This is Major is part cultural criticism, part pop music history, part memoir, part ethnography, and all conscious humor.What I love most about this book is that for all its mastery of various subjects and genres, it is always searingly honest … This is a brilliant book by a black woman aware that, from Phillis Wheatley to Nina Simone, there is a long history of her special brand of genius." -Jericho Brown. That is just some of the early praise, with Ocean Vuong, Phoebe Robinson, Tressie McMillan Cottom, R. Eric Thomas, and numerous publications also weighing in. Hanif Abdurraqib most recent books include They Can’t Kill Us Until They Kill Us, Go Ahead in the Rain: Notes To a Tribe Called Quest, and, last year, a new book of poems, A Fortune For Your Disaster. Next March (2021) should see publication of a new book, A Little Devil in America. This night should be something. Co-presented by Langston and Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 

09/29/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Alex Ross with Ann Powers
Virtual Event
As US cities go, Seattle has probably seen more productions of Richard Wagner operas than any other, thanks to Seattle Opera’s decades of productions of the The Ring Cycle, along with other productions along the way. New Yorker music critic and author (The Rest is Noise) Alex Ross virtually visits with his new book, Wagnerism: Art and Politics in the Shadow of Music (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), to be joined in conversation by NPR music critic and author Ann Powers. “Wagnerism is as magnificently realized as it is monumentally ambitious, a cultural history of the modern world that Richard Wagner and his protean art helped mightily to create, and equally a brilliantly synthetic mapping-out of the infinitely multiplying, antagonistic and cross-pollinating readings and misreadings, transformations and transmogrifications that the world has wrought in its unceasing, ongoing grapplings with Wagner. Alex Ross has assembled a vast convocation of the artists, proponents and prophets of realism and hallucination, psychology and mythification, avant-gardism and populism, democracy and fascism, cosmopolitanism and racism, and collectively they offer us an epic account of the progress of modernity through mazes of aesthetics, ideology and consciousness. It’s a journey for which Ross is the ideal guide: lucid, astoundingly erudite, scrupulous, generous, profound, objective and engaged, and enormously entertaining.” —Tony Kushner. Presented by Town Hall Arts & Culture in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 

09/30/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Barbara Kingsolver
Virtual Event
Time and the way things go being what they are, we suspect we are one of relatively few bookstores that have, for all the pleasure it is for any bookstore or presenting organization to host Barbara Kingsolver, to have already had her read from her poetry. Seal Press, then an independent press based in Seattle, published her first poetry collection, the bilingual Another America / Otra América, and Barbara Kingsolver came to Elliott Bay and read from it in 1992. We are thrilled to present her virtually, as things must be, for this much-anticipated second book of poems, How To Fly (In Ten Thousand Easy Lessons) (HarperCollins). “Telling a moment is Kingsolver’s apt description of what poetry does, and it’s what she does, stunningly, in How to Fly (In Ten Thousand Easy Lessons)… How to Fly is language and observation at their most succulent, moments seized at their peak of ripeness.” --Jonathan Miles, Garden & Gun. Those things and more. This should be special - as part visits by Barbara Kingsolver have been, to say nothing of her remarkable books. Presented by Elliott Bay Book Company. Tickets include a copy of How to Fly (In Ten Thousand Easy Lessons).   Event Link  
 

09/30/2020 - 6:00pm

Virtual Event
Michael Ian Black
Virtual Event
Noted actor, comedian, author (of books for children and adults) Michael Ian Black pays Seattle and Town Hall this virtual visit for his engaging, instructive new book, A Better Man: A (Mostly Serious) Letter to My Son (Algonquin). “I think about the subject matter of Michael Ian Black's new book all the time. As a parent of both boys and girls, I find myself rebuffing the gender-based cultural assumptions that are foisted on them more frequently than I could have ever imagined. Thank you Michael Ian Black for challenging society's antiquated approach to raising boys, and deepening the conversation about what we actually want for our kids. Sir, you are a good egg.”—Samantha Bee. “Obviously, Michael Ian Black can be funny, but who knew he could write something so raw, intimate, and true? A Better Man cracked me wide open, and it’s a template for the conversation we need to be having with our boys. So, if you have a son, are a son, or know anyone who has ever been a son, just . . . please, read this book.”—Peggy Orenstein. Presented by Town Hall Arts & Culture in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company.   Event Link  
 
 
 
 
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