Book Favorites and Calendar

Salman Rushdie From a guy who knows something about Muslim extremism, the subject of his new novel, Shalimar the Clown, is a bold choice. It deals with the clash of religious and cultural sensibilities at the border of India and Pakistan. Fantasy, political assassination, and, yes, 9/11 figure in the plot. You'll have to explain to us how film director Max Ophüls becomes a character in the story. Thurs., Sept. 22. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., 206-652-4255, www.townhallseattle.org. Jane Smiley To cope with writer's block, the Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist turned to her own bookshelves for succor: 100 titles of a self-devised canon including Don Quixote, White Teeth, and Atonement. The result, which she'll discuss with our local über-librarian Nancy Pearl, is Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Novel. Wed., Sept. 28. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., 206-652-4255. www.townhallseattle.org. David Roberts Perhaps America's pre-eminent writer on mountaineering (even before Jon Krakauer), he looks back on his own risk-filled youth in On the Ridge Between Life and Death: A Climbing Life Reexamined. If you've ever lost a friend or suffered an accident in the hills—and even if you haven't—you owe it to yourself to hear him speak. Thurs., Sept. 29. REI, 222 Yale Ave. N., 206-223-1944, www.rei.com. Simon Winchester After his Krakatoa, the master of disaster examines a cataclysm closer to home in A Crack in the Edge of the World: America and the Great California Earthquake of 1906. The decrepit, dangerous viaduct along our waterfront only makes his tale more important. Wed., Oct. 19. Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., 206-621-2230, www.lectures.org. George Packer Drawing from some of his reportage in The New Yorker, The Assassins' Gate: America in Iraq takes an unstinting look at Dubya's policies, our military miscalculations, and—most important—the human cost on the ground, felt by both U.S. and Iraqi families. Any bets as to how many will have died by the time he speaks? Wed., Nov. 16. University Book Store, 4326 University Way N.E., 206-634-3400, www.bookstore.washington.edu. E.L. Doctorow Current political thinking is that the South actually won the Civil War (look at who's running our country). So it's a good time, then, for the great American novelist to look back at that period in The March, set along Gen. Sherman's brutal path. The scars are still with us. Fri., Nov. 18. Seattle Central Library, 1000 Fourth Ave., 206-386-4636, www.spl.org. Books Calendar Note venue information at end of list. Dates are subject to change. Call ahead to confirm. SEPTEMBER 19 BARBARA EHRENREICH See review. 19 RICHARD HELL The punk-rock/lit figure mixes past and present, memoir and fiction in his Godlike. (Also Oct. 21 at Richard Hugo House.) University Book Store. 21 CYNTHIA OZICK Seattle Arts & Lectures presents the acclaimed novelist and essayist, a longtime contributor to The New Yorker. Benaroya Hall. 22 SALMAN RUSHDIE See Fall Favorites. 25 WALTER MOSLEY Cinnamon Kiss is his 10th mystery in the Easy Rollins series. Elliott Bay Book Co. 26 JONATHAN KOZOL Another reason to vote for school levies: The Shame of the Nation: The Restoration of Apartheid Schooling in America. Presented by Foolproof. Town Hall, www.foolproof.org. 26 ARIEL LEVY With porn stars all over the best-seller lists, she tackles a titillating topic in Female Chauvinist Pigs: Woman and the Rise of Raunch Culture. University Book Store. 26 TERRY PRATCHETT He continues his comic-fantasy Discworld series with Thud! University Temple Methodist Church, 1415 N.E. 43rd St., 206-634-3400, www.bookstore.washington.edu. 25 DAVID RAKOFF The NPR humorist shares his complaints from Don't Get Too Comfortable: The Indignities of Coach Class, the Torments of Low Thread Count, the Never-Ending Quest for Artisanal Olive Oil, and Other First World Problems. Elliott Bay. 27 CANDACE BUSHNELL The Sex and the City creator is back with Lipstick Jungle. W Hotel, 1112 Fourth Ave., www.spacecitymixer.com. 28 PAMELA PAUL More with the XXX exegesis: Pornified: How the Culture of Pornography Is Changing Our Lives, Our Relationships, and Our Families. University Book Store. 28 JANE SMILEY See Fall Favorites. 29 ROBERT PINSKY Presented by the Nextbook series on Jewish culture, he makes the biblical figure into a man of action in The Life of David. Benaroya Hall, www.nextbook.org. 29 DAVID ROBERTS See Fall Favorites. 29 JIM WALLIS Even liberals can believe in God, according to the author of God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It. Presented by Foolproof. Town Hall, www.foolproof.org. OCTOBER 4 NEIL GAIMAN African trickster gods somehow figure in the workings of Anansi Boys, from the perennial sci-fi best seller. University Temple Methodist Church, www.bookstore.washington.edu. 7 ZADIE SMITH She of White Teeth returns with On Beauty, a novel built partly upon Howard's End. Elliott Bay. 10 GARRY WILLS For the 1776 crowd, his Henry Adams and the Making of America is sure to find a place on the nightstand. University Temple Methodist Church, www.bookstore.washington.edu. 11 BRIAN JACQUES He loves the Northwest, and he's bringing two books to this evening (and several following events): High Rhulain, about an uprising among otters; and The Redwall Cookbook, which has nothing to do with cooking or eating otters. University Temple Methodist Church, www.bookstore.washington.edu. 11 KAYLA WILLIAMS Jarhead for chicks? Her memoir of the Iraq war is Love My Rifle More Than You: Young and Female in the U.S. Army. University Book Store. 14 HA JIN His acclaimed novel War Trash is new in paper. (Next day, he's at Elliott Bay.) UW Parrington Hall, 206-634-3400, www.bookstore.washington.edu. 19 SIMON WINCHESTER See Fall Favorites. 20 OCTAVIA BUTLER Her dedicated sci-fi readers have been waiting seven years for Fledgling, which features vampires—of the future! (Also Nov. 7 at University Book Store.) Elliott Bay. 26 AMY TAN Her latest novel is Saving Fish From Drowning. Soon, no doubt, to be a movie. Seattle Central Library. 26 JOSEPH C. WILSON The Politics of Truth: Inside the Lies That Led to War and Betrayed My Wife's CIA Identity: A Diplomat's Memoir is new in paper. Presented by Foolproof. Town Hall, www.foolproof.org. 27 DAVA SOBEL You loved Longitude. Now learn all about The Planets, even if their number is in dispute. Town Hall. NOVEMBER 1 ARIEL DORFMAN With his play Purgatorio starting at Seattle Repertory Theatre, the Nextbook series on Jewish culture has the Chilean writer read from his memoir Why for Years I Did Not Seem to Care If I Was a Jew and Whether I Was Wrong. Benaroya Hall, www.nextbook.org. 3 TAB HUNTER Happily out of the closet, the '50s beefcake icon tells all in Tab Hunter Confidential: The Making of a Movie Star. Elliott Bay. 9 JOAN DIDION Her memoir The Year of Magical Thinking deals with the death of her husband, fellow writer, and colleague, John Gregory Dunne. Seattle Central Library. 10 MARK CRISPIN MILLER Gee, wonder what this one's about: Fooled Again: How the Right Stole the 2004 Election, and Why They'll Steal the Next One, Too (Unless We Stop Them). Town Hall, www.foolproof.org. 21 ALEXANDER McCALL SMITH Seattle Arts & Lectures presents the affable Scottish one-man publishing industry (The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency). Benaroya Hall. 16 GEORGE PACKER See Fall Favorites. 18 JONATHAN RABAN Seattle's favorite Brit (and sometime SW contributor) reads from his My Holy War: Dispatches From the Home Front. Town Hall. 18 E.L. DOCTOROW See Fall Favorites. 21 DORIS KEARNS GOODWIN Christmas is around the corner, and her Master Among Men: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln will make a fine gift for Dad. Town Hall. VENUES Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., 206-621-2230, www.lectures.org. Elliott Bay Book Co., 101 S. Main St., 206-624-6600, www.elliottbaybook.com. Foolproof, 206-628-0888, www.foolproof.org. Seattle Central Library, 1000 Fourth Ave., 206-386-4636, www.spl.org. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., 206-652-4255, www.townhallseattle.org. University Book Store, 4326 University Way N.E., 206-634-3400, www.bookstore.washington.edu. bmiller@seattleweekly.com

 
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