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« Week of May 4, 2014 »
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4
Start: 12:00 pm

Left Bank in Larkspur • Single $105; Couple $170 (one book)

Please note: online registration for this luncheon is now closed. Please call (415) 927-0960 ext. 1 to inquire about ticket availability. 

This special lunch will feature seasonal fresh organic produce from Marin Organic's Member Farms and select wines, including the 2013 Commanderie de la Bargemone Rosé (AOP Coteaux d’Aix en Provence) 

What Julia Child is to French cooking, Deborah Madison is to vegetarian cooking--a demystifier and definitive guide to the subject. After her many years as a teacher and writer, she realized that there was no comprehensive primer for vegetarian cooking, no single book that taught vegetarians basic cooking techniques, how to combine ingredients, and how to present vegetarian dishes with style. Originally published in 1997, Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone was both ahead of its time and an instant classic, and has endured as one of the world's most popular vegetarian cookbooks. Featuring 1,400 recipes suitable for vegetarians, vegans, and everyone who loves fresh produce and good food, New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone is as full of practical information as it is inspiring, a treasure from a truly irreplaceable culinary voice.

Deborah Madison is the award-winning author of 12 books, including The Greens Cookbook, The Savory Way, Local Flavors, and, most recently, Vegetable Literacy. She received the M.F.K. Fisher Mid-Career Award from Les Dames d'Escoffier in 1994.

 

Start: 1:00 pm

Dee Williams' life changed in an instant, with a near-death experience in the aisle of her local grocery store. Diagnosed with a heart condition at age forty-one, she was all too suddenly reminded that life is short, time is precious, and she wanted to be spending hers with the people and things she truly loved. That included the beautiful sprawling house she had painstakingly restored—but, increasingly, it did not include the mortgage payments, constant repairs, and general time-suck of home ownership. A new sense of clarity began to take hold: Just what was all this stuff for? The things that couldn’t compare with the financial freedom and the ultimate luxury—time—that would come with downsizing.

Deciding to build an eighty-four-square-foot house—on her own, from the ground up—was just the beginning of building a new life. Williams can now list everything she owns on one sheet of paper, her monthly housekeeping bills amount to about eight dollars, and it takes her approximately ten minutes to clean the entire house. It’s left her with more time to spend with family and friends, and given her freedom to head out for adventure at a moment’s notice, or watch the clouds and sunset while drinking a beer on her (yes, tiny) front porch.

The lessons Williams learned from her “aha” moment post-trauma apply to all of us, regardless of whether or not we decide to discard all our worldly belongings. Part how-to, part personal memoir, The Big Tiny: A Built-It-Myself Memoir ($26.95), is an utterly seductive meditation on the benefits of slowing down, scaling back, and appreciating the truly important things in life.

Dee Williams is a teacher and sustainability advocate. She is the co-owner of Portland Alternative Dwellings, where she leads workshops focused on tiny houses, green building, and community design. Her story has been featured on Good Morning America and NBC Nightly News, and on NPR, PBS, MSNBC, CNN, and CBC. She has also been profiled or featured in hundreds of online blogs and articles, and in print media including Time, The New York Times, and Der Spiegel.

 

Start: 4:00 pm

What Are You Waiting For?: Learn How to Rise to the Occasion of Your Life ($15.95) asks the questions: What are you waiting for? Do you find yourself waiting for the right moment? The ideal relationship? The perfect job? Are you waiting for your “real” life to begin? Do think that the gifts of life are right around the corner? That one day you will arrive and everything will be okay? Do you endlessly search, yet never seem to find? Through the sharing of authentic personal stories and profound life lessons, Kristen Moeller explores our pervasive human tendency to wait for life and to look outside ourselves for answers. So we dont try; we give up. We sell out and we forget who we are. We are afraid to succeed, afraid to fail, and afraid to say we are afraid. But as Wayne Gretzky said, “You'll always miss one-hundred percent of the shots you don't take!” Kristen Moeller's mission in life is to inspire you to get on the path, move forward, and take the shot.

Kristen Moeller, MS, is a coach, speaker, author, and radio show host. She delights in "disrupting the ordinary" and inspiring others to do the same. Kristen first discovered her passion for personal development in 1989 after recovering from an eating disorder and addiction. After years of struggling with low self-esteem, she realized that recovery and joy is possible. Determined to provide this for others, Kristen immersed herself in the field of personal growth, earning a master's degree in mental health counseling, volunteering and working in treatment centers while continuing to train and develop herself. Now, a highly popular radio personality, TED speaker and author, Moeller is an in-demand workshopper and visionary dedicated to providing people with the tools they need to find and live their passions.

 

Start: 4:00 pm

In 1945, on the outskirts of Salzburg, victorious American soldiers capture a train filled with unspeakable riches. Jack Wiseman, a tough, smart, New York Jew, is the lieutenant charged with guarding the treasure. This responsibility grows more complicated when he meets Ilona, a fierce, beautiful Hungarian who has lost everything in the ravages of the Holocaust. Seventy years later, Jack gives a necklace to his granddaughter, Natalie, and charges her with searching for an unknown woman—a woman whose portrait and fate come to haunt her.

A story of brilliantly drawn characters, Love and Treasure ($26.95), is Ayelet Waldman’s finest novel to date: a sad, funny, richly detailed work that poses hard questions about the value of precious things in a time when life itself has no value, and about the chains that can bind us to the griefs and passions of the past. 

Ayelet Waldman is the author of the novels Red Hook Road, Love and Other Impossible Pursuits, and Daughter’s Keeper, as well as of the essay collection Bad Mother: A Chronicle of Maternal Crimes, Minor Calamities, and Occasional Moments of Grace, and the Mommy-Track Mystery series. She lives in Berkeley.

--

After the death of her beloved twin brother and the abandonment of her long-time lover, Greta Wells undergoes electroshock therapy. Over the course of the treatment, Greta finds herself repeatedly sent to 1918, 1941, and back to the present. Whisked from the gas-lit streets and horse-drawn carriages of the West Village, to a martini-fueled lunch at the Oak Room, in these other worlds, Greta finds her brother alive and well though fearfully masking his true personality. And her former lover is now her devoted husband...but will he be unfaithful to her in this life as well? Greta Wells is fascinated by her alter egos: in 1941, she is a devoted mother; in 1918, she is a bohemian adulteress.

In this spellbinding novel by Andrew Sean Greer, The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells ($14.99), each reality has its own losses, its own rewards; each extracts a different price. Which life will she choose as she wrestles with the unpredictability of love and the consequences of even her most carefully considered choices?

Andrew Sean Greer studied writing at Brown University, where he was the commencement speaker at his own graduation. He later received a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Montana. He soon moved to Seattle, where he wrote for Nintendo and taught community college, then to San Francisco, where he began to publish in magazines such as Esquire, The Paris Review, and The New Yorker before releasing a collection of his stories, How It Was for Me. His novels include The Path of Minor Planets, The Confessions of Max Tivoli, and The Story of a Marriage. He lives in San Francisco with his husband in a house adjoining that of his twin brother.

 

Start: 7:00 pm
The Write On Mamas, a collective of some 40 Bay Area writing moms (and one dad), will debut their first anthology titled Mamas Write ($14.29). The book comprises 29 essays that address how the group writes about parenting in modern families formed through birth, adoption, marriage, surrogacy, and partnership. Mamas Write features a forward by Kate Hopper, author of Use Your Words and Ready For Air.
 
Essays in the anthology include Write On Mamas co-founder Janine Kovac’s “The Next Prompt,” a moving account of the birth of her premature twin sons; and widower Steven Friedman’s “Shine, Shine, Shine,” a loving chronicle of his wife’s passing. Huffington Post blogger and Minnesota resident Leslie Lagerstrom writes with heartfelt honesty about raising a transgender child in “It’s A Boy,” while blogger Jennifer Van Santvoord explores jumping off the conventional career path in “The Write Identity.” Finally, memoirist Jessica O’Dwyer describes finding her calling as a writer through adopting a child in “The Mother in the Square,” set in Antigua, Guatemala.

In addition to the essays, Mamas Write includes “Mamas Answer,” funny and heartfelt responses to questions such as: “How does a busy parent make time for writing?” “Why do you write, and where?” “What writing books inspire you?” and “What holds you back from writing?" The roster of monthly speakers has included Christine Bronstein, founder of “A Band of Women”; Brooke Warner, co-founder of “She Writes” publishing; and Caroline Grant, editor-in-chief at Literary Mama.
 
The event will include readings from Steven Friedman, Claire Hennessy, Jessica O'Dwyer, Mindy Urlaub, and Laurel Hilton, who will also act as moderator.
 
5
Start: 7:00 pm
From the outside, Brendan Chase seems to have it pretty easy. He’s a star wrestler, a video game aficionado, and a loving boyfriend to his seemingly perfect match, Vanessa. But on the inside, Brendan struggles to understand why his body feels so wrong—why he sometimes fantasizes having long hair, soft skin, and gentle curves. Is there even a name for guys like him? Guys who sometimes want to be girls? Or is Brendan just a freak?

In Freakboy ($18.99), Kristin Clark uses razor-sharp verse to fold three narratives into one powerful story: Brendan trying to understand his sexual identity, Vanessa fighting to keep her and Brendan’s relationship alive, and Angel struggling to confront her demons.
 
Kristin Elizabeth Clark always knew she wanted to be a writer. She began dabbling in haiku in the third grade – this “experimentation” turned out to be a gateway to the harder stuff: book-length verse. She lives and writes in Northern California where she has worked as a child advocate within the juvenile justice system, and as a children’s theatre producer. She is a proud volunteer at Project Outlet in Mountain View, CA. Freakboy is her young adult debut.
 
Left Coast Writers provides literary connections, support, readings, writing tips, literary chat, unabashed networking, and great fun. LCW hosts a variety of activities to launch the books of members and explore publishing alternatives. See bookpassage.com/left-coast-writers
 
Start: 7:00 pm

Beverly Burch’s elegant new collection of poetry is an astonishingly stark and honest exploration of rupture and renewal, fearlessly and joyously observed. From the condensed, cryptic “Final Exam” poems woven through the book, to compelling and mysterious narratives, page after page of How a Mirage Works ($16.00) demands our attention. “Even the air's a risk,” Burch writes, and readers gladly take that risk, moved by—and into—the charged air of these powerful poems.

The range of subjects in Murray Silverstein’s Master of Leaves ($16.00)—from the mind of God, to a breakfast peach —astonishes and delights. The voice that moves through this expanse is as at home in the philosophical as it is in the colloquial. These are poems spoken by a son, husband, father, and grandfather, with a tenderness that never becomes sentimental. And there is so much music here, from the meditation on Monet at the beginning, to the stunning final sequence on dark and light that gives the book its title. These are poems that celebrate the multiple blessings of life and time.

Beverly Burch’s first book of poetry, Sweet to Burn, won the Gival Poetry Prize and a Lambda Literary Award. Her fiction and poetry have appeared in New England Review, Willow Springs, the Antioch Review, Southern Poetry Review, North American Review, and Southern Humanities Review. She is the author of two nonfiction books—On Intimate Terms and Other Women —and has a psychotherapy practice in Berkeley, California. 

Murray Silverstein’s first poetry collection, Any Old Wolf, received an Independent Publisher medal for poetry. Silverstein produced the Sixteen Rivers compact disc, Naming the Rivers, and served as executive editor for the press’s anthology, The Place That Inhabits Us: Poems of the San Francisco Bay Watershed. His poems have appeared in numerous journals, including the Brooklyn Review, Hunger Mountain, The Louisville Review, Nimrod, Poetry East, and Rattle. A practicing architect and coauthor of four books about architecture, Silverstein lives in Oakland, California.

These two works are the thirty-first and thirty-second books to be published by Sixteen Rivers Press, a poetry collective dedicated to providing an alternative publishing avenue for Bay Area poets. Please join us for a night of poetry with these two local writers.

 

6
Start: 10:00 am
End: 12:00 pm

Five Tuesdays: May 6-June 3 • 10:00-12:00 pm • $160

 

 

This class is a continuation of grammar and language immersion.

Graciela Pera was born in Buenos Aires. She is a graduate of the University of Buenos Aires and has been teaching Spanish for over 35 years.

 

Start: 12:00 pm

Ticket: $55 (includes lunch & signed copy of It Ain't Over...Till It's Over)

In conversation with Book Passage president Elaine Petrocelli 

Please note: online registration is now closed. Tickets can be purchased over the phone (415-927-0960 ext. 1) or at the door. Seating begins at 11 am.

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Right Words at the Right Time comes a one-of-a-kind collection of inspiring stories about ordinary women who have reinvented themselves in extraordinary ways.

We’ve heard it all before: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”

“Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”

“When life hands you lemons, make lemonade.”

But anyone who has ever tried to make a big life change knows it can be a bit more complicated— and frightening—than that. How do you get up the nerve and confidence to actually take the leap? No one knows better than the women profiled in this powerful book by actress, activist, and bestselling author Marlo Thomas.

It Ain’t Over . . . Till It’s Over introduces us to sixty amazing women who are proving that it’s never too late to live out a dream—to launch a business, travel the world, get a PhD, indulge a creative impulse, make a family recipe famous, escape danger, find love, or fill a void in life with a challenging new experience. Meet a graphic artist who fulfilled a childhood ambition by going to med school at age forty-two; a suburban mom whose innovative snack recipe for her daughter’s lunchbox turned into a multimillion-dollar business; a private-practice psychiatrist who convinced her husband that they should quit their jobs and take off on an exciting, open-ended, cross-country adventure—in a giant bus, no less!; and a middle-aged English teacher who, devastated to discover that her husband was cheating on her, refused to be a victim, filed for divorce, and began the challenging journey of rebuilding her life.

Brimming with anecdotes that will inspire smiles, tears, and—most of all—hope, It Ain’t Over speaks to women of all ages with an empowering message: The best is yet to come! 

Marlo Thomas is the author of six bestselling books, Free to Be…You and Me, Free to Be…a Family, The Right Words at the Right Time (Volumes 1 and 2), Thanks and Giving: All Year Long, and her memoir, Growing Up Laughing: My Story and the Story of Funny. She has won four Emmys, a Golden Globe, a Grammy, and the Peabody Award, and has been inducted into the Broadcasting Hall of Fame. She lives in New York with her husband, Phil Donahue.

Book Passage hosts literary luncheons with celebrated authors at our Marin store. These events are catered by the outstanding Insalata’s Restaurant of San Anselmo. The price includes lunch and an autographed book.

 

 

Start: 6:00 pm

A Special Event for Teens!

Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren't love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she's written. One for every boy she's ever loved--five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Then, one day, her secret letters are mailed. Suddenly, Lara Jean's love life goes from imaginary to out of control, in: To All the Boy's I've Loved Before ($17.99).

Emily is about to have the most unexpected summer ever in, Since You've Been Gone ($17.99). Before Sloane, Emily didn't go to parties, she barely talked to guys, and she didn't do anything crazy. Enter Sloane, the best kind of best friend--someone who yanks you out of your shell. But right before what should have been an epic summer, Sloane just... disappears. There's just a random to-do list with thirteen bizarre tasks that Emily would never try. Getting through Sloane's list will mean a lot of firsts, and with a whole summer ahead of her--and with the unexpected help of the handsome Frank Porter--who knows what she'll find.

Jenny Han is the New York Times bestselling author of The Summer I Turned Pretty series, Shug, and the Burn for Burn trilogy, cowritten with Siobhan Vivian. She is also the author of the chapter book Clara Lee and The Apple Pie Dream. A former children’s bookseller, she earned her MFA in creative writing at the New School.

Morgan Matson received her MFA in Writing for Children from the New School. She is the author of Second Chance Summer and Amy & Roger's Epic Detour, for which she was named a Publishers Weekly Flying Start author, which was also recognized as an ALA Top Ten Best Book for Young Adults. 

 

Start: 7:00 pm

While camping with her family on a remote island, five-year-old Anna awakes in the night to the sound of her mother screaming. A rogue black bear is attacking the family's campsite -- and pouncing on her parents as prey. Anna manages to get her brother into the family's canoe and paddle away. But when the canoe runs aground on the edge of the woods, the two must battle hunger, the elements, and a wilderness alive with danger. Lost and completely alone, they find that their only hope resides in Anna's heartbreaking love for her family, and her struggle to be brave when nothing in her world seems safe anymore.

This is a story with a small narrator and a big heart. Author, Claire Cameron, gracefully plumbs Anna's young perspective on family, responsibility, and hope, charting both a tragically premature loss of innocence and a startling evolution as Anna reasons through the impossible situations that confront her. Lean and confident, and told in the innocent and honest voice of a five-year-old, The Bear ($25.00) is a transporting tale of loss -- but also a poignant and surprisingly funny adventure about love and the raw instincts that enable us to survive.

Claire Cameron's first novel, The Line Painter, was nominated for an Arthur Ellis Award for best crime first novel and won the Northern Lit Award from the Ontario Library Service. Cameron's work has appeared in the New York Times, the Globe & Mail, and The Millions. She worked as a wilderness instructor in Ontario's Algonquin Park and for Outward Bound. She lives in Toronto with her husband and two children.

 

7
Start: 9:00 am
End: 11:00 am

Five Wednesdays: May 7-June 4 • 9:00-11:00 am • $160

 

 

This class is a basic introduction for students who have just begun to study Spanish.

Graciela Pera was born in Buenos Aires. She is a graduate of the University of Buenos Aires and has been teaching Spanish for over 35 years.

 

Start: 7:00 pm
From the highly acclaimed, award-winning Anthony Doerr comes All The Light We Cannot See ($27.00), a stunningly ambitious and beautiful novel about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.

Marie Laure lives with her father in Paris within walking distance of the Museum of Natural History where he works as the master of the locks (there are thousands of locks in the museum). When she is six, she goes blind, and her father builds her a model of their neighborhood so she can memorize it with her fingers and navigate the real streets with her feet and cane. When the Germans occupy Paris, father and daughter flee to Saint-Malo on the Brittany coast, where Marie-Laure's agoraphobic great uncle lives in a tall, narrow house by the sea wall.

In another world in Germany, an orphan boy, Werner, grows up, enchanted by a crude radio he finds. He becomes a master at building and fixing radios, a talent that wins him a place at an elite and brutal military academy and ultimately, makes him a highly specialized tracker of the Resistance. Werner travels through the heart of Hitler Youth to the far-flung outskirts of Russia, and finally into Saint-Malo, where his path converges with Marie-Laure.

Anthony Doerr was awarded the 2010 Story Prize for Memory Wall. His other books include The Shell Collector, About Grace, and Four Seasons in Rome.  His books have been a New York Times Notable Book, an American Library Association Book of the Year, a "Book of the Year" in the Washington Post. Doerr has won the Barnes & Noble Discover Prize, the Rome Prize, the Hodder Fellowship from Princeton, and shared the New York Public Library’s Young Lions Fiction Award.  His book reviews have appeared in the New York Times and Der Spiegel, and he writes the “On Science” column for the Boston Globe. Doerr is the Writer-in-Residence for the state of Idaho.

 
Start: 7:00 pm
End: 9:00 pm

Six Wednesdays: May 7-June 11 • 7:00-9:00 pm • $150

 


“To have great poets,” Walt Whitman said, “there must be great audiences, too.” What makes a poem worth reading? This group looks at famous poets from several centuries and from several literatures.

Widely published local poet and author John Hart co-edits the venerable all-poetry journal Blue Unicorn, now in its 36th year.

 

Start: 7:00 pm

The financial world is more complex than ever, and people are struggling to make sense of it all. If you’re like most people moving into the phase of life where protecting—as well as growing-- assets is paramount, you’re faced with a number of financial puzzles.  Maybe you’re struggling to get your kids through college without drawing down your life’s savings. Perhaps you sense your nest egg is at risk and want to move into safer investments. Maybe you’re contemplating downsizing to a smaller home, but aren’t sure of the financial implications. Possibly, medical expenses have become a bigger drain than you expected and you need help assessing options.  Perhaps you’ll shortly be eligible for social security but want to optimize when and how to take it.

Whatever your specific financial issue, one thing is certain—your range of choices is vast. As the financial world becomes increasingly complex, what you need is deeply researched advice from professionals whose credentials are impeccable and who prize clarity and straightforwardness over financial mumbo-jumbo.

Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz and the Schwab team have been helping clients tackle their toughest money issues for decades. Through Carrie’s popular “Ask Carrie” columns, her leadership of the Charles Schwab Foundation, and her work across party lines through two White House administrations and with the President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability, she has become one of America’s most trusted sources for financial advice.
 
In The Charles Schwab Guide to Finances After Fifty: Answers to Your Most Important Money Questions ($25.00), Carrie will not only answer all the questions that keep you up at night, she’ll provide answers to many questions you haven’t considered but should.

Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz is president of the Charles Schwab Foundation and senior vice president at Charles Schwab & Co., Inc., where she has spent the past thirty years serving clients and advocating for investors. Under her leadership the Foundation has established several notable financial education programs, including a curriculum for teens developed in collaboration with Boys & Girls Clubs of America. She also spearheaded a program with AARP Foundation to provide financial education and coaching to people age fifty and older. Her popular personal finance column “Ask Carrie” is syndicated weekly through Creators News Service.  She’s a Certified Financial PlannerTM certificant, and the coauthor of the popular book about family finances, It Pays to Talk.

 

8
Start: 12:00 pm

In conversation with Jacqueline Winspear 

Ticket: $55 (includes lunch & signed And the Dark Sacred Night)

Please note: online registration is now closed. Walk-up registration may be available. Call (415) 927-0960 ext. 1 for more information. 

The award-winning author, Julia Glass, on her best subject—family secrets—in And the Dark Sacred Night ($26.95), the story of a middle-aged man who searches for his father, upending relationships beyond his own and changing forever the way he fits into the world he thought he knew so well.

Julia Glass is the author of Three Junes, winner of the 2002 National Book Award for Fiction; The Whole World Over; I See You Everywhere, winner of the 2009 Binghamton University John Gardner Book Award; and The Widower's Tale. Her essays have been widely anthologized. A recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Glass also teaches fiction writing, most frequently at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. She lives with her family in Marblehead, Massachusetts. 

Jacqueline Winspear is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Leaving Everything Most Loved, Elegy for Eddie, A Lesson in Secrets, The Mapping of Love and Death, Among the Mad, and An Incomplete Revenge, as well as four other national bestselling Maisie Dobbs novels. She has won numerous awards for her work, including the Agatha, Alex, and Macavity awards for the first book in the series, Maisie Dobbs, which was also nominated for the Edgar Award for Best Novel and was a New York Times Notable Book. Originally from the United Kingdom, she now lives in California. 

Book Passage hosts literary luncheons with celebrated authors at our Marin store. These events are catered by the outstanding Insalata’s Restaurant of San Anselmo. The price includes lunch and an autographed book.

 

Start: 12:30 pm
If you've started a business, you know that the journey toward success can be both invigorating and confusing, so where can you find advice that is practical and focused but still as playful and passionate as you are? Look no further than this book, which combines solid business expertise with a right-brain perspective that inspires creativity and innovation. Jennifer Lee's fresh, empowering approach emphasizes taking action and continually improving to achieve extraordinary long-term results.

Building Your Business the Right-Brain Way ($21.95) offers real-world-tested techniques that can benefit all sorts of businesses, whether you're a sole proprietor running a coaching practice, a crafter looking to license products, a wellness professional with a team of employees, or any creative soul making a meaningful difference with your work
 
Jennifer Lee is the founder of Artizen Coaching and the bestselling author of The Right-Brain Business Plan, which has helped tens of thousands of entrepreneurs around the world launch their creative businesses. Before pursuing her own passions full-time, she consulted for ten years for Fortune 500 companies such as Gap Inc., Accenture, and HP, helping leaders and organizations manage change. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.
 
 
Start: 6:00 pm

After the death of her beloved twin brother and the abandonment of her long-time lover, Greta Wells undergoes electroshock therapy. Over the course of the treatment, Greta finds herself repeatedly sent to 1918, 1941, and back to the present. Whisked from the gas-lit streets and horse-drawn carriages of the West Village, to a martini-fueled lunch at the Oak Room, in these other worlds, Greta finds her brother alive and well though fearfully masking his true personality. And her former lover is now her devoted husband...but will he be unfaithful to her in this life as well? Greta Wells is fascinated by her alter egos: in 1941, she is a devoted mother; in 1918, she is a bohemian adulteress.

In this spellbinding novel by Andrew Sean Greer, The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells ($14.99), each reality has its own losses, its own rewards; each extracts a different price. Which life will she choose as she wrestles with the unpredictability of love and the consequences of even her most carefully considered choices?

Andrew Sean Greer studied writing at Brown University, where he was the commencement speaker at his own graduation. He later received a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Montana. He soon moved to Seattle, where he wrote for Nintendo and taught community college, then to San Francisco, where he began to publish in magazines such as Esquire, The Paris Review, and The New Yorker before releasing a collection of his stories, How It Was for Me. His novels include The Path of Minor Planets, The Confessions of Max Tivoli, and The Story of a Marriage. He lives in San Francisco with his husband in a house adjoining that of his twin brother.

 

Start: 6:30 pm

Left Bank in Larkspur • Single $115; Couple $175 (one book)

Please note: online registration is now closed. To inquire about waitlist availability, please call (415) 927-0960.  

It’s been ten years since David Lebovitz moved to Paris. In that time, the culinary culture of France has shifted as a new generation of chefs and home cooks incorporate ingredients and techniques from around the world into traditional French dishes. In My Paris Kitchen: Recipes and Stories ($35.00), David remasters the classics, introduces lesser-known fare, and presents 100 sweet and savory recipes that reflect the way modern Parisians eat today. David also shares stories told with his trademark wit and humor. Lush photography taken on location around Paris and in David’s kitchen reveal the quirks, trials, beauty, and joys of life in the culinary capital of the world.

 

Start: 7:00 pm
In this highly anticipated new novel, The Temporary Gentleman ($26.95), Irishman Jack McNulty is a “temporary gentleman”—an Irishman whose commission in the British army in World War II was never permanent. Sitting in his lodgings in Accra, Ghana, in 1957, he’s writing the story of his life with desperate urgency. He cannot take one step further without examining all the extraordinary events that he has seen. A lifetime of war and world travel—as a soldier in World War II, an engineer, a UN observer—has brought him to this point. But the memory that weighs heaviest on his heart is that of the beautiful Mai Kirwan, and their tempestuous, heartbreaking marriage. Mai was once the great beauty of Sligo, a magnetic yet unstable woman who, after sharing a life with Jack, gradually slipped from his grasp.
 
Award-winning author Sebastian Barry’s newest work is the sixth book in his cycle of separate yet interconnected novels that brilliantly reimagine characters from Barry’s own family.

Sebastian Barry has won the Costa Book of the Year Award, the Hughes & Hughes Irish Novel of the Year Award and the Walter Scott Prize. His work has twice been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. He is the author of five previous novels and lives in Ireland.

 

9
Start: 10:00 am
End: 12:00 pm

Six Fridays.: May 9-June 20 (no class June 13) • 10:00-12:00pm • $240

 

 

Have you started a book but haven’t been able to finish it? Leslie Keenan knows the reasons most writers get stuck and can help them get back in the flow again. Students will leave with a strategy for completing their book. Also covered is advice on the best way to get a book published, with suggestions for agents, editors, publishers, and printers.

Leslie Keenan is an experied writing instructor. One published student says, “If it weren’t for Leslie Keenan’s courses at Book Passage, I would never have written a word of fiction.”

 

Start: 7:00 pm

After three years of living his dream as a professional baseball pitcher, Mike Robbins had an arm injury that benched him for good. When this happened, everything changed. He had to figure out who he was without the identity of "baseball player"--a process fraught with emotional highs and lows--and he quickly realized that the self-criticism and self-doubt he was feeling are an epidemic in our culture. Too often we base our value on our external world--our jobs, appearance, or various other factors. Even the most successful people struggle with their relationship with themselves. In Nothing Changes Until You Do: A Guide to Self-Compassion and Getting Out of Your Own Way ($19.95), Mike looks at this delicate relationship and brings to light a new way to look at life, opening your eyes to your innate value.

These 40 inspiring essays boil down some of the most important lessons Mike has learned on his own personal journey. With themes spanning from the importance of trusting yourself to the benefits of vulnerability, this book shows you how to get out of your own way and make peace with yourself. With humor, authenticity, and ease, Mike illustrates that with a little self-compassion and a healthy dose of self-acceptance, anyone can turn away from the negatives that manifest because of critical self-perception. Making peace with yourself is fundamental to happiness and success. So join Mike, and learn to have more compassion, acceptance, and love for yourself--thus giving you access to more compassion, acceptance, and love for the people (and everything else) in your life.

Mike Robbins is the author of two previous books, Focus on the Good Stuff and Be Yourself, Everyone Else is Already Taken. He's a sought-after keynote speaker, seminar leader, and coach who speaks to groups of all kinds throughout the world. Some of his clients include Google, Wells Fargo, Twitter, Gap, Adobe, Chevron, Citibank, the US Department of Labor, Stanford University, the San Francisco Giants, and many others. Mike and his work have been featured in Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, as well as on ABC News and the Oprah radio network. He's a regular contriutor to the Huffington Post and his books have been translated into twelve different languages.

 

10
Start: 10:00 am

A Special Event for Kids!

With more than two million copies of the original sold worldwide, DK now brings you a fully revised and updated edition of the #1 New York Times bestseller, LEGO® Star Wars®: The Visual Dictionary.

Complete with 48 additional pages, and updated throughout to show all of the new sets and innovations, LEGO® Star Wars®, LEGO Star Wars: The Visual Dictionary: Update and Expanded ($21.99) provides detailed and annotated photography giving insight into the characters, locations, creatures, and spacecraft of the LEGO galaxy far, far away. Young Padawans will learn the ins and outs about their favorite vehicles, weapons, and minifigures such as Anakin, Yoda, Luke Skywalker, and Darth Vader.

Fans of all ages will learn about every LEGO Star Wars set released while exploring the updated cross sections that expose the inner workings of larger-piece sets such as the Death Star or Millennium Falcon. The updated "Beyond the Bricks" chapter goes behind-the-scenes to take a look at how LEGO sets are made, new models, plus fun fan creations. Of course this book would not be complete without an exclusive LEGO Star Wars minifigure, which is sure to impress even the most dedicated collector.

Jason Fry is an author who writes for Wizards of the Coast and Star Wars Insider. He also frequents the forums of TheForce.Net. He has a special interest in Star Wars astrography and was a co-author of The Essential Atlas with Daniel Wallace. Although he has primarily written Star Wars reference books and articles, Fry has also expanded into the realm of fiction, having authored such works as the short story "Deader than a Triton Moon" and the young readers' novel Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Darth Maul: Shadow Conspiracy. His first original novel is titled The Jupiter Pirates: Hunt for the Hydra.

 

Start: 10:00 am
End: 4:00 pm

Sat., May 10 • 10:00-4:00 pm • $120

 

 

This is your chance to fix short stories that are “almost there”—the little heartbreakers that are still not exactly right. Often it just takes a slight adjustment, but sometimes it takes a sharp kick—this class offers both.

Molly Giles is a novelist and short story writer. She teaches at the University of Arkansas and is an editor for Penguin Putnam. Giles has worked with Amy Tan and many other successful writers.

Class Credit: Participants in these classes may receive credit at Dominican University: bookpassage.com/dominican-credit

 

Start: 10:00 am
End: 2:00 pm

Sat., May. 10 • 10:00-2:00 pm • $60

 

 

 

48-hour advance registration • Limit of six 

You’ve written a story and you can’t wait to hear what others think. Or you’re stuck and need help. Bring your story to this on-the-spot workshop, and we’ll critique it. Amy Novesky is a children’s book editor, author, and workshop leader.

 

Start: 1:00 pm

Perseverance, determination, drive, resolve, courage and grit. These are the characteristics of a true survivor. A cancer survivor looks death in the face. She either gets scared and her body succumbs, or she sets an intention to live and beats the cancer against all odds. Transformation: Creating an Exceptional Life in the Face of Cancer ($16.95), is about the latter. It’s about taking the reins of your life and proactively changing the course of your survival, from diagnosis, to treatment, to creating a new life after cancer. This book explores the passion for living that lies inside each of us. Take a moment to ask yourself, "What truly excites me in life?" Is it people, food, travel, work, sports or the arts? "What's stopping me from living the life I have always dreamed of?" Author, Gale O’Brien, reveals how she conquered emotional repression and the fear of dying to emerge with a new attitude toward food, health and fitness, relationships, time management, work and spirituality. This book is an honest, revealing, no holds barred description of Gale’s transformational journey to survival, and how she finally gave herself permission to start living life fully engaged.

Gale O'Brien has a Master of Arts degree in Education, with an emphasis in Curriculum and Instruction. Previously a school teacher, she now enjoys a rewarding career as a writer and motivational speaker. she is the founder of The Healing Blog: Creating an Exceptional Life and a contributor to Examiner.com, reporting on topics relevant to cancer survivorship. She lives in New Mexico, where she is inspired by the people and the art culture of the Southwest.

 

Start: 1:00 pm

Much of Heather Ross's creative work has been inspired by her being born into an eccentric family of artists and idealists in a rural corner of Vermont during the 1970s. According to Heather, that environment was defined by stunning natural beauty, creative and innovative living, and daily lessons in self-reliance. It also included equal parts of general dysfunction, a self-imposed but nearly inescapable poverty, and little exposure to basic life skills. When, as a twenty-something, Heather complained to her mother about a long list of things that had compromised her chance of ever leading a "normal" life (immunizations, a healthy respect for authority, etc.), her mother waved a hand and replied, "Well, you should thank me, because you have a lot of good stories instead." How to Catch a Frog: And Other Stories of Family, Love, Dysfunction, Survival, and DIY ($24.95), is a collection of those stories, plus others that show Ross's eventual route to success as an artist, entrepreneur, and mother. This work is also animated by Ross's delightful illustrations and how-to instructions.

Heather Ross is an illustrator, author, and textile designer with a large following in the crafts and sewing markets. Her textile designs are among the most recognizable in the retail fabric market and are a favorite among home sewers of clothing, accessories, and decor for children. She is the author of Weekend Sewing, a best-selling how-to sewing book, Heather Ross Prints, and is the illustrator of the Crafty Chloe picture book series, as well as numerous chapter book titles. She teaches sewing and crafts to women and girls of all ages through her popular sewing retreats and online. Heather's client list includes a wide range of product lines and companies, including high end home decor and fashion fabrics for Kokka of Japan, paper goods for Chronicle Books, and original artwork for Polar Bears International, for whom she acts as artistic ambassador.

 

Start: 2:30 pm
End: 3:30 pm

Sat., May 10 • 2:30-3:30 pm • $25

 

 

Yvonne Horn, award-winning travel writer, shares a PowerPoint presentation of eight gardens with tales to tell, gardens that express the passion of their creator. Among them are the poison garden at England’s Alnwick Castle; “Cougar Annie’s” garden in the wilderness of Vancouver Island; and Kokadera, Kyoto’s garden run amok in moss.

Yvonne Michie Horn has won multiple awards during her work as a travel writer, including two Lowell Thomas awards for Foreign Travel. Early on in her travels Yvonne began to understand that one can learn a lot about a place from its gardens, and while she admires the grand gardens of the world, she seeks out those with a compelling, unique story to be told. Yvonne is a member of the Society of American Travel Writers, American Society of Journalists and Authors, and Garden Writers Association. When not traveling, she headquarters in Sonoma County where she negotiates for gardening space with deer, turkeys, and other critters.

 

Start: 4:00 pm

In the Heart of Marin: The History of Kentfield & Greenbrae California ($60.00), tells tales of the small communities of Kentfield and Greenbrae. It begins in the 1800s, with stories of suburban Greenbrae, carefully and thoughtfully planned. Also highlighted, is the history of the Kentfield School District. This work is a 400-page history, which includes hundreds of historical photographs and maps, and local artist George Demont Otis’ depiction of Mt. Tamalpais on the cover.

In addition to Dewey Livingston’s extensive research, Kentfield-Greenbrae Historical Society research committee members have, along with the author himself, conducted interviews with a variety of longtime residents of Kentfield and Greenbrae. (Additional interviews of Kent alumni from over the past 70 years were conducted by Kent Middle School 8th graders). The resulting oral histories have been incorporated into Livingston’s history of the two communities and add a delightful sense of place to the work. Stories of long-ago childhood adventures in both Kentfield and Greenbrae rub shoulders with the intent and vision of the founders of the two communities.

Dewey Livingston, historian and author, has spent over 25 years uncovering the rich history of Marin County and other areas of the American West, then crafting his discoveries into highly readable texts. While Dewey is originally from Southern California, he spent his high school years in Kentfield, and many hours hiking the trails of Mt. Tamalpais. A large body of his recent work has focused on the Point Reyes Peninsula and West Marin, including, Nicasio: The Historic Valley at the Center of Marin.

 

Start: 4:00 pm

Tickets: $35 (includes signed copy of A Fighting Chance)
Angelico Hall, Dominican University

This event is now sold out. We will form a stand-by line at 3:00 pm outside the event for anyone who would like to wait and see if spaces open up that day. There is always the possibility that a VERY FEW amount of seats will become available due to patrons who do not attend. 

As a child in small-town Oklahoma, Elizabeth Warren yearned to go to college and then become an elementary school teacher—an ambitious goal, given her family’s modest means. Early marriage and motherhood seemed to put even that dream out of reach, but fifteen years later she was a distinguished law professor with a deep understanding of why people go bankrupt. Then came the phone call that changed her life: could she come to Washington DC to help advise Congress on rewriting the bankruptcy laws?

Thus began an impolite education into the bare-knuckled, often dysfunctional ways of Washington. She fought for better bankruptcy laws for ten years and lost. She tried to hold the federal government accountable during the financial crisis, but became a target of the big banks. She came up with the idea for a new agency designed to protect consumers from predatory bankers, and was denied the opportunity to run it. Finally, at age 62, she decided to run for elective office and won the most competitive—and watched—Senate race in the country.

In this passionate, funny, rabble-rousing book, A Fighting Chance ($28.00), Warren shows why she has chosen to fight tooth and nail for the middle class—and why she has become a hero to all those who believe that America’s government can and must do better for working families.

Elizabeth Warren is the senior senator from Massachusetts. A former Harvard Law School professor, she is the author of eight books, including All Your Worth: The Ultimate Lifetime Money Plan and The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Mothers and Fathers Are Going Broke, written with her daughter, Amelia Tyagi.

 

Start: 4:00 pm
Join students and teachers for a selection of readings from work produced through the UC Berkeley Extension program. Founded in 1891, UC Berkeley Extension is the continuing education branch of the University of California, Berkeley. Today they offer more than 2,000 courses each year.
 
Start: 7:00 pm

The ex-pat recluses hiding out in a tumbledown Baja beachfront settllement have only one desire: they want to be left alone. And they are—until a mysterious government drone plummets into the desert next to their tumbledown settlement. The high-tech air war that follows lights up the Mexican skies, and the carnage from that battle spills down on Punta Gringa’s vagabonds, scuttling their dreams. Drone Baloney ($11.95) chronicles the efforts of this quirky band that fights against progress they don’t enjoy. John Hewitt is a Los Angeles native who has pursued the art of avoiding potholes while driving through Mexico. He currently lives in northern California.

Left Coast Writers provides literary connections, support, readings, writing tips, literary chat, unabashed networking, and great fun. LCW hosts a variety of activities to launch the books of members and explore publishing alternatives. See bookpassage.com/left-coast-writers. 



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