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« Week of July 6, 2014 »
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6
7
Start: 7:00 pm

Tracy Grant, novelist and Merola Opera Program Director of Foundation, Corporate and Government Relations, will discuss Merola's upcoming Summer Festival Season. The festival will feature two operas that offer very different takes on passion and power dynamics between men and women, Mozart's masterpiece Don Giovanni and André Previn's jazz-influenced setting of Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire. Grant will discuss the common themes and literary origins of both works and share insights into Merola's productions this summer.

Led artistically by San Francisco Opera Center Director and internationally acclaimed soprano Sheri Greenawald, the Merola Opera Program is an independent nonprofit organization which operates in collaboration with the San Francisco Opera. Founded in 1957 and named for San Francisco Opera’s founder, Gaetano Merola, the Program is recognized as one of the most prestigious operatic training programs in the world. The Merola Opera Program typically receives more than 800 applications for approximately 30 positions. Throughout the summer, Merola artists participate in master classes and private coachings with opera luminaries. Participants – who include singers, apprentice coaches and an apprentice stage director – also receive training in operatic repertory, foreign languages, diction, acting and stage movement. Read more >>

 

8
Start: 7:00 pm
Co-Sponsored by the Academy of Sciences
 
In 2005, the United States imported twelve billion dollars’ worth of seafood, nearly double what we had imported ten years earlier. During that same period, our seafood exports rose by a third. In American Catch ($26.95), our foremost fish expert Paul Greenberg looks to New York oysters, gulf shrimp, and Alaskan salmon to reveal how it came to be that 91 percent of the seafood Americans eat is foreign.

Despite the challenges, hope abounds. In New York, Greenberg connects with an oyster restoration project with a vision for how the bivalves might save the city from rising tides; in the gulf, shrimpers band together to offer local catch direct to consumers. And in Bristol Bay, fishermen, environmentalists, and local Alaskans gather to roadblock Pebble Mine. In American Catch Paul Greenberg proposes there is a way to break the current destructive patterns of consumption and return the American catch back to American consumers.
 
Paul Greenberg is the author of the James Beard Award–winning bestseller Four Fish: The Future of the Last Wild Food and a regular contributor to The New York Times. He has been featured on NPR’s Fresh Air and All Things Considered and has lectured for Google, Harvard, the U.S. Senate, and many other institutions. He is currently a fellow with The Blue Ocean Institute and the writer in residence at New York City’s South Street Seaport Museum.
 
 
9
Start: 10:00 am
End: 12:00 pm

Three Wednesdays: July 9, 30, & Aug. 6 • 10:00-12:00pm • $95

 

 

Review of verb tenses—newspaper articles and short stories. Gisella Petrone has a master’s degree from the University of Calabria. She has taught English, Italian, Latin, Roman History, and Italian cooking.

 

Start: 12:30 pm
As someone whose identity has been forged by reality TV (as a contestant on America’s Next Top Model) and social media and mobile technology, Kim Stolz is deeply obsessed with the subject. She has a hard time putting her phone down. And yet she remembers what life was like before technology-induced ADD, before life had become a string of late-night texts, Snapchats, endless selfies, that sinking feeling you get when you realize you’ve hit reply all by mistake. It’s hard to imagine now, but there was once a time before we wasted a full hour emptily clicking through a semi-stranger’s vacation pictures on Facebook, a time before every ex, every meaningless fling was a mere click away. 

Unfriending My Ex: And Other Things I’ll Never Do ($24.00) is the first book to document the hilarity of the social media revolution from the inside; it chronicles a life filtered through our obsessive relationship with technology. The book is as eye-opening as it is entertaining as it proceeds through the various ways in which social media and mobile technology have generated empathy deficits and left us all with the attention spans of fruit flies…and the sad fact that in spite all of this, we find it impossible to switch our devices off. 

Smart, hilarious, and completely relatable, Unfriending My Ex: And Other Things I’ll Never Do captures our crazy moment, shining a bright light on the trials and tribulations of life online.
 
Kim Stolz is a former contestant on America’s Next Top Model, MTV news anchor, restaurateur, and current Vice President of Equity Derivatives at Citigroup. She is a graduate of The Brearley School and Wesleyan University. In 2012 she was named one of the 100 Most Compelling People of the Year by Out magazine. She lives in New York City.
 
 
Start: 7:00 pm
An award-winning writer takes a groundbreaking look at the experience and psyche of the Asian American male in Big Little Man ($27.00). Alex Tizon landed in an America that saw Asian women as sexy and Asian men as sexless. Immigrating from the Philippines as a young boy, everything he saw and heard taught him to be ashamed of his face, his skin color, his height. His fierce and funny observations of sex and the Asian American male include his own quest for love during college in the 1980s, a tortured tutorial on stereotypes that still make it hard for Asian men to get the girl. Tizon writes: "I had to educate myself on my own worth. It was a sloppy, piecemeal education, but I had to do it because no one else was going to do it for me." And then, a transformation. First, Tizon's growing understanding that shame is universal: that his own just happened to be about race. Next, seismic cultural changes - from Jerry Yang's phenomenal success with Yahoo! Inc., to actor Ken Watanabe's emergence in Hollywood blockbusters, to Jeremy Lin's meteoric NBA rise. Finally, Tizon's deeply original, taboo-bending investigation turns outward, tracking the unheard stories of young Asian men today, in a landscape still complex but much changed for the Asian American man.
 
Alex Tizon, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, is former Seattle bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times and longtime staff writer for the Seattle Times. He co-produced a 60 Minutes segment on Third World mail-order brides in Asia, and currently teaches at the University of Oregon. Big Little Man was the winner of the prestigious Work in Progress Prize from the J. Anthony Lukas Prize Project.
 
10
Start: 1:00 pm
End: 3:00 pm

Three Thursdays: July 10, 31, & Aug. 7 • 1:00-3:00pm • $95

 

 

Review of passato prosimo and imperfect, with readings of Italian short stories. Gisella Petrone has a master’s degree from the University of Calabria. She has taught English, Italian, Latin, Roman History, and Italian cooking.


Start: 6:00 pm
From award-winning, Los Angeles Times bestselling author Jervey Tervalon comes Monster’s Chef ($24.99), a highly clever, twisting tale of suspense involving drugs, perverse sex, and poisonous celebrity worship, in which a man trying to rebuild his life becomes entangled in dangerous and deadly circumstances

Once upon a time, Gibson was a successful chef with a popular restaurant and a beautiful loving wife. He was also a drug addict with a habit that nearly destroyed him. Fresh out of rehab, he’s now using his skills to feed his fellow halfway house residents budget gourmet meals—a talent that attracts two shady women who offer him a job cooking for a music superstar named Monster. Though Gibson doesn’t have a good feeling about his seeming good fortune, he needs a job.

Arriving on Monster’s compound, Gibson senses that trouble is still on his tail. First, he’s asked to sign a confidentiality agreement. Then he meets the compound’s gardener, who warns him not to go outside at night—and tells him that to stay alive he must see nothing, hear nothing, say nothing. 

It is advice that proves all too true when Gibson discovers a dead body near his bungalow a few nights later. Suddenly, all hell is breaking loose . . . and Gibson is at the center. Now he has to figure out how to escape this terrifying nightmare . . . and whether he can.

Jervey Tervalon is the author of five books, including the bestselling Dead Above Ground and Understanding This, for which he won the New Voices Award from Quality Paper Books, and the anthology, The Cocaine Chronicles. He was the Remsen Bird Writer in Residence at Occidental College and a Disney Screen Writing Fellow. He is the director of the Literature for Life Project, a literary/salon magazine, and the literary director of LitFest Pasadena. Born in New Orleans, he now lives in California and teaches at the College of Creative Studies at UC Santa Barbara.
 
Start: 7:00 pm
Though he lived in the thirteenth century, Meister Eckhart's deeply ecumenical teachings were in many ways modern. He taught about what we call ecology, championed artistic creativity, and advocated for social, economic, and gender justice. All these elements have inspired spiritual maverick Matthew Fox and influenced his Creation Spirituality. In Meister Eckhart: A Mystic-Warrior for Our Times ($17.95) Fox creates metaphorical meetings between Eckhart and Teilhard de Chardin, Thich Nhat Hanh, Carl Jung, Black Elk, Rumi, Adrienne Rich, and other radical thinkers. The result is profoundly insightful, substantive, and inspiring. 
 
The author of thirty books, Matthew Fox has been an instrumental teacher and scholar in the revival of Western mysticism, particularly the work of Hildegard of Bingen, Meister Eckhart, and Thomas Aquinas. Fox teaches and speaks widely and lives in Oakland, California.
 
11
Start: 7:00 pm
When life gives you lemons, make citron pressé

When Francophiles Don and Mindy Wallace received an offer for a house on a tiny French island, they jumped at the chance, buying it almost sight unseen. What they found when they arrived was a building in ruin, and it wasn't long before their lives resembled it. Plagued by emergency repairs, a stock market crash, and very exasperated French neighbors, the Wallace's could have accepted their fate. Instead, they embraced it. The French House ($14.99) is the delightfully amusing and picturesque memoir about a family who seized life, rose from the rubble, and built themselves a home away from home.

Don Wallace has been a writer and editor for 25 years and is the film editor for Honolulu Weekly. He has held senior positions at Yachting, SELF, and Golf Digest Woman, with articles appearing in the New York Times, Fast Company, Redbook, and others.
 
12
Start: 10:00 am
Special event for kids! 
 
Ron Berman is a native San Franciscan who loves to write about the city.

The Cable Car That Couldn’t Clang ($6.95) is Ron’ s latest book. Have you ever lost your voice?  What a nuisance! But can you imagine the horror of a Cable Car losing its Clang? This is what happens to Clyde as he and his old buddy, Sasha the Sea Lion, roam the hills and beaches of San Francisco in search of his Clang. On the way, he runs across all the great sounds of the city from Fisherman’s Wharf, to the S.F.Zoo, the ballet, Chinatown and more.
 
Ron worked as a copy writer and Creative Director in SF which is not even nearly as much fun as writing children’s books. He lives just 15 minutes away from Book Passage where he’s purchased books for his wife, Ellie, two daughters, three grandchildren and three grand dogs. Along with illustrator Frank Hill, Ron has also written Sasha the San Francisco Sea Lion and Dude the Surfin’ Sea Otter. He also created Old McDonald Had a Wedding with illustrations by Brian Gerrity.
 
Start: 1:00 pm
In this fun and informative presentation Kyle Ellison, author of Moon Maui ($19.99), will share unique and environmental ways for travelers to enjoy Maui—complete with gorgeous photos! By educating visitors about environmental issues, volunteer opportunities, and ways to lessen their impact on the island, Ellison will help you to become a responsible visitor while enjoying an unforgettable Maui vacation. Travelers are always looking for ways to be more eco-friendly, and as an outdoor enthusiast and Maui native, Ellison can offer them essential advice for minimizing their footprint while making the most of this dynamic destination. 
 
Outdoor enthusiast, travel writer, and Maui expert Kyle Ellison knows the best ways to experience Hawaii’s second largest island. From the endless stretches of golden sand to the sparkling waters off of Wai’anapanapa State Park, residents and visitors alike can agree that there’s something magical about Maui. With itineraries like “Best of Maui in 10 Days,” “Best Surfing,” and “Best for Honeymooners,” Moon Maui truly has something for every traveler—no matter their reason for visiting the Valley Isle.
 
Kyle Ellison began researching Maui when he first moved there at age five. The island has changed considerably since then, but his love of Maui has remained. Today he works as a freelance travel writer for Gadling, Viator, AOL Travel, Matador, and Journey and lives in Lahaina with his wife Heather.
 
Start: 4:00 pm

Networking is why the term, "It's who you know,” is relevant in society today. Networking has provided the vital introductions for which many well known celebrities can credit their success. And now, Networking Magic: How to Find Connections That Transform Your Life ($17.95), reveals the tricks and illusions that surround truly magical networking. Networking, for many, is purely a selfish act; friendships are only maintained until one person gets everything they can get from the other and then they sever the bond. However, true and effective networking, as explained by networking legends Jill Lublin and Rick Frishman, is built upon the foundation of relationships and a core of generosity. Networking is the act of giving to others. Lublin and Frishman provide the key networking habits and tips to help readers build, maintain, and grow their networking database and reputation as a giver.

This work recognizes that networking should also be intentional. Readers should choose to develop a network of supportive people that will willingly and gladly help them reach their goals. To help readers be intentional networkers, Lublin provides action steps that make readers aware of the impressions they give, and guides them in how to connect more authentically with their peers and those they want to meet.

Jill Lublin is the three time bestselling author of Guerrilla Publicity, Get Noticed…Get Referrals, and Networking Magic. As an international speaker, Jill is an audience favorite for her lively and interactive keynote speeches, seminars, and special programs. Her unparalleled knowledge of publicity and networking has gotten the attention of ABC, NBC, CBS, the New York Times, Entrepreneur magazine, Fortune Small Business and a long list of media outlets worldwide. When Jill isn’t travelling, she hosts her own television show, Messages of Hope.

 

Start: 7:00 pm
The Sicilian Mafia: A True Crime Travel Guide ($18.95) is the first book of its kind in any language: the ultimate Cosa Nostra experience. Since 2006, author Carl Russo has photographed Mafia hotspots on the Italian island of Sicily: where the murders happened, where the godfathers lived, where their victims are buried. From the sunbaked fishing villages of the Mediterranean to the darkest alleys of Palermo, western Sicily is the exotic backdrop for more than 100 meticulously researched tales of murder and mayhem, packed with 200 photographs of the actual locations.
 
The book’s historical sweep covers 150 years of revolutions, world wars, politics and popular culture—all inextricably bound to Cosa Nostra. They include the childhood home of gangster Lucky Luciano, the hideouts of the fearsome bosses of Corleone, the tombs of the “Robin Hood” bandit Giuliano and the legendary dons, Calogero Vizzini and Giuseppe Genco Russo, the roots of the American and Canadian mafias, Mussolini, the Allied landing, pistol-packing priests, the Room of Death, the political assassinations, the playgrounds of the new Mafia. the anti-Mafia movement…. All of these Cosa Nostra sites and associations are depicted in sharp prose and revealing images, introducing many stories to English readers for the first time.
 
Street directions are included for the adventurous traveler. Whether you’re planning a trip to Sicily or sticking to the comfort of your armchair, this provocative book will take you closer to the Sicilian Mafia than you dared to think possible.
 
Carl Russo is a San Francisco writer who has covered film for various publications, including the Oakland Tribune, indieWIRE.com and KUSF-FM. He fell in love with Sicily on his first trip to the island in 1999 and has returned nearly every year since. In 2010, he started writing a blog, Mafia Exposed, which became the basis for this book.
 


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