Virtual Events

Alka Joshi and Sujata Massey - The Secret Keeper of Jaipur and The Bombay Prince (Online Event)

Sunday, June 20, 2021 - 1:00pm

Conversations with Authors

Sun., June 20, 2021 • 1:00pm PT • Live • Online

Conversations with Authors is our free online event series produced with Extended Session. Sign up once with your email address and gain access to all future conversations as well as all video archives.

New York Times bestselling author Alka Joshi returns to the world of her sensational debut, The Henna Artist, in The Secret Keeper of Jaipur. In this rich and lavishly told standalone tale, Henna artist Lakshmi arranges for her protégé, Malik, to intern at the Jaipur Palace.

It’s the spring of 1969, and Lakshmi, now married to Dr. Jay Kumar, directs the Healing Garden in Shimla. Malik has finished his private school education. At twenty, he has just met a young woman named Nimmi when he leaves to apprentice at the Facilities Office of the Jaipur Royal Palace. Their latest project: a state-of-the-art cinema.

Malik soon finds that not much has changed as he navigates the Pink City of his childhood. Power and money still move seamlessly among the wealthy class, and favors flow from Jaipur’s Royal Palace, but only if certain secrets remain buried. When the cinema’s balcony tragically collapses on opening night, blame is placed where it is convenient. But Malik suspects something far darker and sets out to uncover the truth. As a former street child, he always knew to keep his own counsel; it’s a lesson that will serve him as he untangles a web of lies.


Bombay’s first female lawyer, Perveen Mistry, is compelled to bring justice to the family of a murdered female Parsi student just as Bombay’s streets erupt in riots to protest British colonial rule. Sujata Massey is back with this third installment to the Agatha and Mary Higgins Clark Award-winning series set in 1920s Bombay.

November 1921. Edward VIII, Prince of Wales and future ruler of India, is arriving in Bombay to begin a fourmonth tour. The Indian subcontinent is chafing under British rule, and Bombay solicitor Perveen Mistry isn’t surprised when local unrest over the royal arrival spirals into riots. But she’s horrified by the death of Freny Cuttingmaster, an eighteen-year-old female Parsi student, who falls from a second-floor gallery just as the prince’s grand procession is passing by her college.

Freny had come for a legal consultation just days before her death, and what she confided makes Perveen suspicious that her death was not an accident. Feeling guilty for failing to have helped Freny in life, Perveen steps forward to assist Freny’s family in the fraught dealings of the coroner’s inquest. When Freny’s death appears suspicious, Perveen knows she can’t rest until she sees justice done. But Bombay is erupting: as armed British secret service march the streets, rioters attack anyone with perceived British connections and desperate shopkeepers destroy their own wares so they will not be targets of racial violence. Can Perveen help a suffering family when her own is in danger?


Alka Joshi was born in India and raised in the U.S. since the age of nine. She has a BA from Stanford University and an MFA from California College of Arts. At age 62, Joshi published her debut novel, The Henna Artist, which immediately became a New York Times bestseller, a Reese Witherspoon Bookclub pick, was Longlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize, and is being developed into an episodic series by Miramax TV. The sequel, The Secret Keeper of Jaipur, premieres June 2021, and will be followed by the third book in the trilogy in 2022.

Sujata Massey is the author of fifteen mystery and suspense novels, including the Perveen Mistry legal mystery series set in 1920s Bombay. The first Perveen novel, The Widows of Malabar Hill, won the Agatha, Macavity, Mary Higgins Clark, and Lefty awards of 2019 and was optioned for film and television. Sujata’s newest book featuring Perveen is titled The Bombay Prince and takes place amidst the rioting spurred by the 1921 visit to India by Edward VIII, Prince of Wales. Sujata lives in Baltimore, Maryland, and travels to India when she can to research more books in the Perveen series.


Alka Joshi photo by Garry Bailey; Sujata Massey photo courtesy of author


NEW DATE: Peter L.W. Osnos - An Especially Good View (Online Event)

Wednesday, June 30, 2021 - 5:30pm

Book Passage Presents

NEW DATE: Wed., June 30th, 2021 • 5:30pm PT • Live • Online

In conversation with Bill Petrocelli

This event will be broadcast live and does not require registration to attend. To view, please click the "Watch Here" button at the time of the event, or subscribe to our e-newsletter to receive a ten-minute reminder.

In more than five decades as a reporter, editor and publisher Peter Osnos has had an especially good view of momentous events and relationships with some of the most influential personalities of our time.

As a young journalist for I.F. Stone's Weekly, one of the leading publications of the turbulent 1960s, and in eighteen years at The Washington Post, Osnos covered the war in Vietnam and Cambodia, the Soviet Union at the height of Kremlin power, Washington D.C. as National Editor, "Swinging London" in the 60s, and Thatcher's Britain in the 1980s.

At Random House and the company he founded, PublicAffairs, he was responsible for books by four presidents—Carter, Clinton, Obama and Trump—celebrated Washington figures including Robert McNamara, House Speaker Tip O'Neill and Vernon Jordan, first ladies Rosalynn Carter and Nancy Reagan, the billionaire George Soros, basketball superstars Kareem Abdul Jabbar and Magic Johnson, legendary spies, political dissidents, and the writers Molly Ivins and Peggy Noonan, among many others.

In this unusually wide-ranging memoir, Osnos uses a reporter's skills to portray historic events and encounters beginning with his parents' extraordinary World War II experiences escaping Europe to India, where he was born, to the present day. He shares unique portraits of the famous people he worked with and an insider's perspective of the news and publishing businesses. As he charts the evolution of his career and recent history, he also explores the influence and impact of family, character, curiosity, luck, resilience, a well-pressed suit and some unexpected wrinkles.

Peter L.W. Osnos was born in Bombay (now Mumbai) India on October 13, 1943. He arrived in Los Angeles by ship with his parents and brother in February 1944. He was raised in New York and attended high school in Connecticut, college at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, and graduate school at Columbia University. He worked as an assistant to the journalist I.F. Stone and joined the Washington Post in 1966. At the Post, Osnos served as a correspondent in Vietnam, the Soviet Union, and London. He was also the national and foreign editor. In 1984, Osnos joined Random House as a senior editor and later associate publisher as well as publisher of the Times Books imprint. In 1997, he founded PublicAffairs in partnership with the Perseus Books Group and served as publisher and editor at large until 2020. He was the founder of the Caravan Project on the development of digital and audio publishing, author of a weekly media column called Platform which was hosted by the Century Foundation and appeared on and in 2020, launched Platform Books LLC with his wife, Susan Sherer Osnos. The first book will be An Especially Good View: Watching History Happen to be released in June, 2021. It is Osnos' memoir to be distributed by Two Rivers/Ingram. He is the father of two children, Evan Osnos and Katherine Sanford, and grandfather of five. He and his wife now live in New York City and Lakeside, Michigan.

Bill Petrocelli is co-owner of Book Passage and author of the novels The Circle of Thirteen and Through the Bookstore Window, as well as the nonfiction book Electoral Bait & Switch: How the Electoral College Hurts American Voters.


Peter L.W. Osnos photo courtesy of author; Bill Petrocelli photo courtesy of author


Online Class: Don George - Write Your Best Travel Story

Tuesday, May 11, 2021 - 4:00pm to 7:00pm

Seven Tuesdays: May 11th - June 22nd, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • 4:00-7:00pm PT • $575

Class limited to nine attendees

Please note: This class is currently at capacity. If you would like to be added to the waitlist, please email


This class is patterned on a graduate school creative writing workshop, with emphasis on the craft of writing a publishable travel story. In this workshop, participants will conceive, pitch, and write an original travel piece of up to 2,500 words. This may be based on a recent close-to-home travel experience or on a memory of a past trip. In the workshop, we'll begin by closely reading, discussing, and critiquing examples of excellent travel writing. Then each participant will present their story idea for discussion and revision, and then write an original travel piece of up to 2,500 words. Each piece will be closely read and discussed in class. Subsequent classes will allow for revision, discussion, and further refinement of each piece. During the course of the workshop, in addition to individual critiques, we'll talk about the fine points of structure, pacing, and making your point. This highly successful class has led to numerous published stories in widely known venues such as the annual Best Travel Writing and Lonely Planet anthologies.

Don George is the author of The Way of Wanderlust: The Best Travel Writing of Don George and of Lonely Planet's Guide to Travel Writing and the editor of ten anthologies, including A Moveable Feast, The Kindness of Strangers, Better Than Fiction, and An Innocent Abroad. George is Editor at Large for National Geographic Traveler, where he writes feature articles and the monthly Trip Lit column. He is also Editor of BBC Travel's literary travel column, Chance Encounters.

What students are saying about Don George:

“Don George's travel writing workshop was a rigorous, profound, magical experience, the product of a uniquely nurturing environment. Taking his courses has encouraged me to write without fear of failure, and with greater confidence and creativity than ever before. Any writer—whether officially a travel writer, or any other writer considering issues of place—should jump at the chance to work with him."
—Diane Vadino

"I have always wanted to take a writing workshop from Don George, but was never able to because I did not live in the Bay Area. When he offered his workshop virtually this year, I jumped at the chance and could not be happier with the experience. It motivated me to work on a piece and the feedback I received from the other attendees enabled me to take an "okay" piece I had written and turn it into a piece I'm really proud of by the end of the workshop. I ended up going in a different direction than intended, but it ended up being the right direction I could not see by myself. I would have not been able to get my writing to where it needed to be without Don and the workshop participants. I would sign up for another virtual workshop with Don George in a heartbeat.”
—Lisa Boice


Online Class: John J. Geoghegan - How to Get Your Book Published

Sunday, May 16, 2021 - 11:00am to 2:00pm

Sunday, May 16th, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • 11:00am-2:00pm PT • $75


How to Get Your Book Published is designed to help writers improve their chance of getting their memoir, novel, or non-fiction book considered for publication by a reputable literary agent or publisher. The three hour course will cover:

  • How to identify the right literary agent, editor, or publisher for your project
  • What publishers, editors, and literary agents look for in a submission
  • Which genres offer the best prospect for getting published
  • Understanding the economics of publishing, being a literary agent, or author
  • How to write a query letter
  • How to write a non-fiction book proposal
  • How to format your manuscript
  • What a standard industry book contract looks like
  • 5 rookie mistakes first timers make
  • And much more

John J. Geoghegan began his career at Doubleday Publishers in New York City. In addition to serving as a Special Correspondent for the New York Times, he has worked as an editor and writer in both the magazine  and newspaper industries. John has written more than 100 articles for the New York Times Science section, The Wall Street JournalThe San Francisco Chronicle, WIRED, Smithsonian Air & Space, and American History magazine and other publications. He is also the author of, Operation Storm: Japan’s Top Secret Submarines and Its Plan to Change the Course of World War II (Crown, 2013), which The Wall Street Journal called, “a fascinating, meticulously researched and deft account,” and, Hear Today, Gone Tomorrow: A True Story of Love, Hearing Loss, Heartbreak and Redemption (New Haven Publishing, 2018), which Book Authority ranked No. 1 on its list of the 38 best books about hearing loss. Additionally, John shepherded into production, co-wrote, and served as technical consultant on Japanese SuperSub, a one-hour documentary for PBS television that the New York Times called, “consistently fascinating history.” His third, non-fiction book, When Giants Ruled the Sky, is under contract to The History Press and due in bookstores 2021.


What students are saying about John J. Geoghegan:

"As a writer, I’ve benefited from John’s wisdom through four books. A master at understanding how to meet reader expectations, John zeroes in on a writer’s intention, applauds what's going right, and nails that unnecessary bit of exposition or missed opportunity to drive the story forward."
—K. M., author of eight commercially published novels


Katie Quinn with Jen Phanomrat - Cheese, Wine, and Bread (Online Event)

Tuesday, April 27, 2021 - 3:00pm

Tuesday, April 27th, 2021

Online • Live • 3:00pm PT/6:00pm ET

Participation in this special event requires ordering a copy of Cheese, Wine, and Bread from Book Passage. Once you make your purchase, we will send you a link and a password closer to the event date to access the conversation via Crowdcast.


Join Katie Quinn in-conversation with food YouTuber and podcaster Jen Phanomrat to celebrate the publication of Katie's new book, Cheese, Wine, and Bread: Discovering the Magic of Fermentation in England, Italy, and France! Plus, Katie will demo her Cheddar Brownies recipe from the book during the event.

In this delightful, full-color tour of France, England, and Italy, YouTube star Katie Quinn shares the stories and science behind everyone's fermented favorites—cheese, wine, and bread—along with classic recipes.

Delicious staples of a great meal, bread, cheese, and wine develop their complex flavors through a process known as fermentation. Katie Quinn spent months as an apprentice with some of Europe’s most acclaimed experts to study the art and science of fermentation. Visiting grain fields, vineyards, and dairies, Katie brings the stories and science of these foods to the table, explains the process of each craft, and introduces the people behind them.

What will keep readers glued to the book like a suspense novel is Katie's personal journey as an expat discovering herself abroad; Katie's vulnerability will turn readers into fans, and they'll finish the book feeling like they're her best friends, trusted with her innermost revelations. In England, Katie becomes a cheesemonger at Neal's Yard Dairy, London’s preeminent cheese shop—the beginning of a journey that takes her from a goat farm in rural Somerset to a nationwide search for innovating dairy gurus. In Italy, Katie offers an inside look at Italian winemaking with the Comellis at their family-owned vineyard in Northeast Italy and witnesses the diversity of vintners as she makes her way around Italy. In France, Katie meets the reigning queen of bread, Apollonia Poilâne of Paris' famed Poilâne Bakery, apprentices at boulangeries in Paris learning the ins and outs of sourdough, and travels the country to uncover the present and future of French bread.

Part artisanal survey, part travelogue, and part cookbook, featuring watercolor illustrations and gorgeous photographs, Cheese, Wine, and Bread is an outstanding gastronomic tour for foodies, cooks, artisans, and armchair travelers alike.

Katie Quinn is a video creator, podcast host, and cookbook author. She thinks there is a story to be told everywhere and that food connects people. Every week she posts food and travel videos to her YouTube channel, QKatie. Her slogan is Keep It Quirky because she thinks life, both in the kitchen and out of it, is more enjoyable if you don’t take yourself too seriously. She currently lives in Italy. You can find more information about Katie here:

Jen Phanomrat is the co-founder of Just Eat Life, where she explores and makes all things delicious, cozy, and empowering. Her vibrant creations are influenced by her culturally diverse hometown, Queens, NY, along with Filipino and Thai roots.

Katie Quinn photo by Connor Boals; Jen Phanomrat photo courtesy of author


Daniel James Brown and Tom Ikeda - Facing the Mountain (Online Event)

Tuesday, May 11, 2021 - 5:00pm

Tuesday, May 11th, 2021

Online • Live • 5:00pm PT/8:00pm ET

Presented with Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project


From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Boys in the Boat, a gripping World War II saga of patriotism, highlighting the contributions and sacrifices that Japanese immigrants and their American-born children made for the sake of the nation; the courageous Japanese-American Army unit that overcame brutal odds in Europe; their families, incarcerated back home; and a young man who refused to surrender his constitutional rights, even if it meant imprisonment.

Join Densho for the official book launch of Facing the Mountain, a new book about WWII Japanese American incarceration and the 442nd RCT by Daniel James Brown. The virtual event will feature a conversation between Brown and Densho Executive Director Tom Ikeda, who has conducted oral histories with many of the men highlighted in the book. Facing the Mountain grew out of conversations Brown had with Ikeda in 2015.

They came from across the continent and Hawaii. Their parents taught them to embrace both their Japanese heritage and the ways of their American homeland. They faced bigotry, yet they believed in their bright futures as American citizens. But within days of Pearl Harbor, the FBI was ransacking their houses and locking up their fathers. And within months many would themselves be living behind barbed wire.

Facing the Mountain is an unforgettable chronicle of war-time America and the battlefields of Europe. Based on Daniel James Brown's extensive interviews with the families of the protagonists as well as deep archival research, it portrays the kaleidoscopic journey of four Japanese-American families and their sons, who volunteered for 442nd Regimental Combat Team and were deployed to France, Germany, and Italy, where they were asked to do the near impossible.

But this is more than a war story. Brown also tells the story of these soldiers' parents, immigrants who were forced to shutter the businesses, surrender their homes, and submit to life in concentration camps on U.S. soil. Woven throughout is the chronicle of a brave young man, one of a cadre of patriotic resisters who stood up against their government in defense of their own rights. Whether fighting on battlefields or in courtrooms, these were Americans under unprecedented strain, doing what Americans do best—striving, resisting, pushing back, rising up, standing on principle, laying down their lives, and enduring.

Daniel James Brown is the author of The Boys in the Boat, The Indifferent Stars Above, and Under a Flaming Sky. He lives outside of Seattle.

Tom Ikeda is executive director of Densho, a Seattle-based non-profit dedicated to collecting, preserving, and sharing Japanese American history and promoting social justice and equity.

Founded in 1996, Densho is a trailblazer in the use of digital technology to preserve and share the first-person story. Today, Densho hosts the largest online archive of oral histories and family collections on the Japanese American experience, in addition to a wealth of educational resources to help every American know the history and understand the lessons of the WWII incarceration of Japanese Americans.


Daniel James Brown photo by Robin V. Brown; Tom Ikeda photo by Densho


Mike Bernhardt - Voices of the Grieving Heart (Online Event)

Wednesday, April 7, 2021 - 7:00pm

Wednesday, April 7th, 2021

Online • Live • 7:00pm PT/10:00pm ET

Joined by John Fox and Matthew Félix


Join Mike Bernhardt and very special guests for the launch of the 30th anniversary edition of Voices of the Grieving Heart. This new, expanded edition contains over 160 selected poems, essays, and images by 83 contributors who share their journeys through loss, grief, and transformation.

Foreword contributor John Fox, author of "Poetic Medicine" and founder of The Institute for Poetic Medicine, will share his thoughts; Mike will be in conversation with author and event host Matthew Félix; and three contributors will share readings from the collection.

When Mike Bernhardt’s wife died, he turned to writing poetry as a tool of healing. He later solicited the poetry of other people whose loved ones had died, receiving hundreds of submissions from around the world. The result was Voices of the Grieving Heart, first published in 1994. More than just an anthology of poetry, it is a companion on the darkest road many of us will ever have to travel: grieving the death of someone we loved.

This new, expanded edition contains over 160 selected poems, essays, and images by 83 contributors who share their journeys through loss, grief, and transformation, including:

  • Deaths due to suicide, miscarriage, COVID-19, and other causes
  • Reflections on grief, 30 years later, from first-edition contributors
  • Prompts and blank pages for readers to add their own poetry

Please join us for this very special event in celebration of a very special book!


Julianna Margulies - Sunshine Girl: An Unexpected Life (Online Event)

Friday, May 7, 2021 - 1:00pm

Friday, May 7th, 2021

Live • Online • 1:00pm PT • $40

Purchase a ticket for this event and receive a complimentary copy of Sunshine Girl, delivered right to your door!


Known for her outstanding performances on the groundbreaking television series The Good Wife and ER, Julianna Margulies deftly chronicles her life and her work in this deeply powerful memoir.

As an apple-cheeked bubbly child, Julianna was bestowed with the family nickname “Sunshine Girl.” Shuttled back and forth between her divorced parents, often on different continents, she quickly learned how to be of value to her eccentric mother and her absent father. Raised in fairly unconventional ways in various homes in Paris, England, New York, and New Hampshire, Julianna found that her role among the surrounding turmoil and uncertainty was to comfort those around her, seeking organization among the disorder, making her way in the world as a young adult and eventually an award-winning actress.

Throughout, there were complicated relationships, difficult choices, and overwhelming rejections. But there were also the moments where fate, faith, and talent aligned, leading to the unforgettable roles of a lifetime, both professionally and personally—moments when chaos had finally turned to calm.

Filled with intimate stories and revelatory moments, Sunshine Girl is at once unflinchingly honest and perceptive. It is a riveting self-portrait of a woman whose resilience in the face of turmoil will leave readers intrigued and inspired.

As an Emmy, Golden Globe, and Screen Actors Guild award winner, Julianna Margulies has achieved success in television, theater, and film. Margulies starred as Alicia Florrick on the long-running hit CBS show The Good Wife, which she also produced, and is also well known for her role as one of the original cast members of ER. More recently, Margulies has starred on critically acclaimed series including The Morning Show, Billions, and The Hot Zone. She has been involved with Project ALS and Erin’s Law and is also a board member of the New York City–based MCC Theater company. She resides in New York City with her husband and son.


Julianna Margulies photo courtesy of author


Anne Lamott - Writing 101: COVID College Edition (Online Class)

Saturday, May 15, 2021 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm

Saturday, May 15th • Online

Live • 1:00-4:00pm PT• $75

Get your ticket now for admission to this live three-hour session!


This workshop is a chance to spend three hours together where I can tell you everything I know about writing, and some of what I’ve learned about life during COVID College.

I’ll discuss how to get started, making a commitment to sticking with it, writing a terrible draft, editing, creative freedom and discipline, tricks and hacks to help you get some work done every day, and the hidden blessings of our year in quarantine. As always, we will leave lots of time for your questions, on everything from getting published, to getting your hope and faith in life back.

Anne Lamott is the New York Times bestselling author of Dusk, Night, Dawn; Almost Everything: Notes on Hope; Hallelujah Anyway; Help, Thanks, Wow; Small Victories; Stitches; Some Assembly Required; Grace (Eventually); Plan B; Traveling Mercies; Bird by Bird; and Operating Instructions; as well as seven novels. A past recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and an inductee to the California Hall of Fame, she lives in Northern California.


Anne Lamott photo by Sam Lamott


Billy Collins - The Driver's Seat of Poetry: A Live Poetry Session (Online Class)

Saturday, June 19, 2021 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm

Saturday, June 19th • Online

Live • 1:00-4:00pm PT• $75

Get your ticket now for admission to this live poetry session!


Please join me for this live, three-hour poetry session. I’ll pull from decades as a literature and poetry professor and tackle many of the enduring questions around how to create and write poetry.

What’s going on in the poet’s mind when he or she is actually composing a poem?  Is it Life and Death? Beauty? Truth? The Environment?  I think the answer for me and many other poets is that there is no room in our heads for such big, capitalized subjects when a poem is underway.  We are mostly thinking about how to keep the poem alive by advancing it line by line, and eventually, how to find an interesting place to stop.

Whether you are a practicing poet yourself, an interested reader of poetry, or both, having access to the inner workings of a poem by seeing the poem from the writer’s point of view will sharpen your abilities as a poet and add to your appreciation as a reader.

Poems arrive in their readers’ hands fully done, cooked, and set in no longer moveable type.  But every poem—even a Shakespeare sonnet—was once a work in progress, a living thing that the poet was still working on, perhaps not having a clue what should come next.

So: what I am offering here is an opportunity to enter poems in a fuller, more imaginative way by beholding their inner workings and by imagining the compositional process the poet might have gone through as the poem evolved from an inky mess on a page to a varnished thing.

We will look at a mix of poems—old and new, familiar and odd.  I will offer some of my own as examples; after all, I was right there when they were written.  We will look at a still unfinished poem of mine, one where the paint is still wet.

This will be an interactive experience, not a lecture on poetry.  Your comments and questions, delivered in real time, will give our gathering its vitality

I hope you will sign-up for this poetry safari.  Pith helmets and insect repellent not required.

Billy Collins is the author of twelve collections of poetry including The Rain in Portugal, Aimless Love, Horoscopes for the Dead, The Trouble with Poetry, Nine Horses, Sailing Alone Around the Room, Questions About Angels, The Art of Drowning, and Picnic, Lightning. He is also the editor of Poetry 180: A Turning Back to Poetry, 180 More: Extraordinary Poems for Every Day, and Bright Wings: An Illustrated Anthology of Poems About Birds. His new book is Whale Day: And Other Poems. A former Distinguished Professor at Lehman College of the City University of New York, Billy served as Poet Laureate of the United States from 2001 to 2003 and as New York State Poet from 2004 to 2006. In 2016 he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He lives in Florida with his wife Suzannah.



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