Politics, History & Social Issues

Panel: Race in America and the Lead-Up to the 2020 Election (Corte Madera Store)

Sunday, February 23, 2020 - 5:00pm

Join us for this special event featuring a carefully curated and diverse panel of Bay Area writers and agents of change. Moderated by journalist and Book Passage host Paula Farmer, they’ll be tackling this vital topic and how it may impact the next presidential election. Panelists include:

Brian Copeland
An award-winning actor, comedian, author, playwright, TV and radio talk show host. His bestselling memoir, Not a Genuine Black Man: My Life as an Outsider, reveals a little-known chapter of Bay Area history, and was the 2009 pick for Silicon Valley Reads. Earlier this year, Brian and his fellow actor, Charlie Varon, took on Trump and politics in their play, The Great American S*** Show.

Aya de Leon
The director of the Poetry for the People program, and a teacher of creative writing at UC Berkeley. Kensington Books publishes her award-winning feminist heist/romance series, Justice Hustlers, including Uptown Thief, The Boss, and Side Chick Nation (2019) which was the first novel published about Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. Since 2013 Aya has been consistently blogging on race, class, gender, culture, and social justice politics.

Mimi Lok
The author of the story collection Last of Her Name, published October 2019 by Kaya Press, of which the title story was a finalist for the 2018 Katherine Anne Porter Fiction Prize. She is currently working on a novel. Mimi is also the executive director, cofounder, and editor of Voice of Witness, an award-winning human rights/oral history nonprofit that amplifies marginalized voices through a book series and a national education program.

Ian Haney Lopez
A law professor and commentator on coded racism in American politics. His most recent book is Merge Left: Fusing Race and Class, Winning Elections, and Saving America.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Scott Chapman - Empower Your Investing (Corte Madera Store)

Sunday, March 15, 2020 - 4:00pm

 

Investing is a life skill and, like any life skill, the key is to learn from those who have already done it well. Empower Your Investing offers a success-based mental framework, discipline, and toolkit for your investing success.

This book examines the best practices from masters of the investing world who’ve demonstrated success over many market cycles: Sir John Templeton, Peter Lynch, and Warren Buffett. The case studies of their winning picks blend the prevailing news and popular opinion at the time of their successful investments with their rationale for buying stocks as they explained in subsequent interviews.

Scott A. Chapman, CFA is the CEO and Portfolio Manager of Chapman Investment Management, LLC. He has more than twenty-five years of experience managing investment portfolios and performing securities analysis with demonstrated outperformance. 

"Are you unsure about how to select stocks and build a winning portfolio? Are you worried about investing in a volatile stock market? If so, Scott Chapman has written a masterpiece, bringing together in one book the lessons of three legendary investing Masters. Whether you are a novice or an investment professional, use these pages to put your investing approach firmly on the right path." 
— Thomas M. Arrington, CFA, Investment Professional with Over Thirty Years of Experience in the Financial Services Industry

"Just as athletes might study Michael Jordan, Mohammed Ali, and Babe Ruth, every investor should know and understand John Templeton, Peter Lynch, and Warren Buffett. Scott Chapman brilliantly showcases the investment world's Greatest of All Time (G.O.A.T) so every stock market participant, from novice to seasoned professional, can learn the lessons of those who have reached the pinnacle of success. With a comprehensive step-by-step approach, Chapman provides a deep understanding of what takes to be the best."
— Robert P. Miles, Author, "The Warren Buffett CEO," Executive in Residence, University of Nebraska at Omaha

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Dan Pfeiffer - Un-Trumping America (Corte Madera Store)

Saturday, February 29, 2020 - 4:00pm

There is nothing more important than beating Donald Trump in 2020, but defeating Trump is just the start of this timely book. Un-Trumping America offers readers three critical insights: first, that Trump is not an aberration, but rather the logical extension of the modern Republican Party; second, how Democrats can defeat Trump in 2020; and third, preventing the likes of Trump from ever happening again with a plan to fix democracy.

While the catalog of the president's crimes is long and growing, undoing Trumpism—the political platform of racism, authoritarianism, and plutocracy that gave rise to Trump and defines the Republican Party—is a long and continuing fight. Through a craven, cynical strategy engineered by Mitch McConnell, funded by the Kochs, and fueled by Fox News propaganda, Republicans have rigged American politics to drown out the voices of the people in favor of the powerful. Without an aggressive response that recognizes who the Republicans are and what they have done, American democracy as we know it won't survive this moment and a conservative, shrinking, mostly white minority will govern the country for decades.

Un-Trumping America dismantles toxic Trumpism and offers a way forward. Dan Pfeiffer worked for nearly twenty years at the center of Democratic politics, from the campaign trail to Capitol Hill to Barack Obama's White House. But it was Trump's victory and Republicans' incessant aiding and abetting of Trumpism that has radicalized his thinking. Here, Pfeiffer urges Democrats to embrace bold solutions—from fixing the courts to abolishing the electoral college to eliminating the filibuster—in order to make America more democratic (and Democratic).

Un-Trumping America is a powerful call for Democrats and progressives to get smarter, tougher, and more aggressive without becoming a paler shade of orange.

Dan Pfeiffer is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Yes We (Still) Can and a cohost on Pod Save America. One of Barack Obama's longest serving advisors, he was White House director of communications under President Obama (2009-2013) and senior advisor to the president (2013-2015). He currently lives in the Bay Area with his wife, Howli, and their daughter, Kyla.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Conor Dougherty - Golden Gates (Corte Madera Store)

Sunday, March 1, 2020 - 3:30pm

Spacious and affordable homes used to be the hallmark of American prosperity. Today, however, punishing rents and the increasingly prohibitive cost of ownership have turned housing into the foremost symbol of inequality and an economy gone wrong. Nowhere is this more visible than in the San Francisco Bay Area, where fleets of private buses ferry software engineers past the tarp-and-plywood shanties where the homeless make their homes. The adage that California is a glimpse of the nation's future has become a cautionary tale.

With propulsive storytelling and ground-level reporting, New York Times journalist Conor Dougherty chronicles America's housing crisis from its West Coast epicenter, peeling back the decades of history and economic forces that brought us here and taking readers inside the activist uprisings that have risen in tandem with housing costs. 

To tell this new story of housing, Dougherty follows a struggling math teacher who builds a political movement dedicated to ending single-family-house neighborhoods. A teenaged girl who leads her apartment complex against their rent-raising landlord. A nun who tries to outmaneuver private equity investors by amassing a multimillion-dollar portfolio of affordable homes. A suburban bureaucrat who roguishly embraces density in response to the threat of climate change. A developer who manufactures homeless housing on an assembly line.

Sweeping in scope and intimate in detail, Golden Gates captures a vast political realignment during a moment of rapid technological and social change.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Erik Larson - The Splendid and the Vile (Corte Madera Store)

Thursday, April 2, 2020 - 7:00pm

Tickets: $35 (includes signed copy of The Splendid and the Vile)

On Winston Churchill’s first day as prime minister, Adolf Hitler invaded Holland and Belgium. Poland and Czechoslovakia had already fallen, and the Dunkirk evacuation was just two weeks away. For the next twelve months, Hitler would wage a relentless bombing campaign, killing 45,000 Britons. It was up to Churchill to hold his country together and persuade President Franklin Roosevelt that Britain was a worthy ally—and willing to fight to the end.

In The Splendid and the Vile, Erik Larson shows, in cinematic detail, how Churchill taught the British people “the art of being fearless.” It is a story of political brinkmanship, but it’s also an intimate domestic drama, set against the backdrop of Churchill’s prime-ministerial country home, Chequers; his wartime retreat, Ditchley, where he and his entourage go when the moon is brightest and the bombing threat is highest; and of course 10 Downing Street in London. Drawing on diaries, original archival documents, and once-secret intelligence reports—some released only recently—Larson provides a new lens on London’s darkest year through the day-to-day experience of Churchill and his family: his wife, Clementine; their youngest daughter, Mary, who chafes against her parents’ wartime protectiveness; their son, Randolph, and his beautiful, unhappy wife, Pamela; Pamela’s illicit lover, a dashing American emissary; and the advisers in Churchill’s “Secret Circle,” to whom he turns in the hardest moments.

The Splendid and the Vile takes readers out of today’s political dysfunction and back to a time of true leadership, when, in the face of unrelenting horror, Churchill’s eloquence, courage, and perseverance bound a country, and a family, together.

Erik Larson is the author of five national bestsellers: Dead Wake, In the Garden of Beasts, Thunderstruck, The Devil in the White City, and Isaac’s Storm, which have collectively sold more than nine million copies. His books have been published in nearly twenty countries.

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Please note: Tickets are non-refundable

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

John Carreyrou - Bad Blood (Dominican University)

Wednesday, February 5, 2020 - 7:00pm

Angelico Hall, Dominican University of California
Tickets: $40 (includes signed book)

 

In 2014, Theranos founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes was widely seen as the next Steve Jobs: a brilliant Stanford dropout whose startup “unicorn” promised to revolutionize the medical industry with its breakthrough device, which performed the whole range of laboratory tests from a single drop of blood. Backed by investors such as Larry Ellison and Tim Draper, Theranos sold shares in a fundraising round that valued the company at more than $9 billion, putting Holmes’s worth at an estimated $4.5 billion. There was just one problem: The technology didn’t work. Erroneous results put patients in danger, leading to misdiagnoses and unnecessary treatments. All the while, Holmes and her partner, Sunny Balwani, worked to silence anyone who voiced misgivings—from journalists to their own employees.

Rigorously reported and fearlessly written, Bad Blood is a gripping story of the biggest corporate fraud since Enron—a tale of ambition and hubris set amid the bold promises of Silicon Valley.

John Carreyrou, a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, was a reporter at The Wall Street Journal for twenty years. For his extensive coverage of Theranos, Carreyrou was awarded the George Polk Award for Financial Reporting, the Gerald Loeb Award for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism in the category of beat reporting, and the Barlett & Steele Silver Award for Investigative Business Journalism. Bad Blood was named the Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year. Carreyrou lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and three children.

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Please note: Tickets are non-refundable

Angelico Hall, Dominican University of California
20 Olive Avenue
San Rafael, CA 94901

Tom Brokaw - The Fall of Richard Nixon (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Friday, November 29, 2019 - 4:00pm

Free to Attend • Event will include a speaking portion followed by a signing

In August 1974, after his involvement in the Watergate scandal could no longer be denied, Richard Nixon became the first and only president to resign from office in anticipation of certain impeachment. The year preceding that moment was filled with shocking revelations and bizarre events, full of power politics, legal jujitsu, and high-stakes showdowns, and with head-shaking surprises every day. As the country’s top reporters worked to discover the truth, the public was overwhelmed by the confusing and almost unbelievable stories about activities in the Oval Office.

Tom Brokaw, who was then the young NBC News White House correspondent, gives us a nuanced and thoughtful chronicle, recalling the players, the strategies, and the scandal that brought down a president. He takes readers from crowds of shouting protesters to shocking press conferences, from meetings with Attorney General Elliot Richardson and White House Chief of Staff Alexander Haig, to overseas missions alongside Henry Kissinger. He recounts Nixon’s claims of executive privilege to withhold White House tape recordings of Oval Office conversations; the bribery scandal that led to the resignation of Vice President Spiro Agnew and his replacement by Gerald Ford; the firing of Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox; how in the midst of Watergate Nixon organized emergency military relief for Israel during the Yom Kippur War; the unanimous decision of the Supreme Court that required Nixon to turn over the tapes; and other insider moments from this important and dramatic period.

The Fall of Richard Nixon allows readers to experience this American epic from the perspective of a journalist on the ground and at the center of it all.

Tom Brokaw is the author of seven bestsellers: The Greatest Generation, The Greatest Generation Speaks, An Album of Memories, A Long Way from Home, Boom!, The Time of Our Lives, and A Lucky Life Interrupted. A native of South Dakota, he graduated from the University of South Dakota with a degree in political science. He began his journalism career in Omaha and Atlanta before joining NBC News in 1966. Brokaw was the White House correspondent for NBC News during Watergate, and from 1976 to 1981 he anchored Today on NBC. He was the sole anchor and managing editor of NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw from 1983 to 2005. In 2008 he anchored Meet the Press for nine months following the death of his friend Tim Russert. He continues to report for NBC News, producing long-form documentaries and providing expertise during breaking news events. Brokaw has won every major award in broadcast journalism, including two duPonts, two Peabody Awards, and several Emmys. In 2014, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He lives in New York and Montana.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

Bonnie Morris - The Feminist Revolution (Corte Madera Store)

Saturday, November 23, 2019 - 1:00pm

The Feminist Revolution offers an overview of women's struggle for equal rights in the late twentieth century. Beginning with the auspicious founding of the National Organization for Women in 1966—a time when women across the world were mobilizing individually and collectively in the fight to assert their independence and establish their rights in society—the book traces a path through political campaigns, protests, the formation of women's publishing houses and groundbreaking magazines, and other events that shaped women's history. It examines women's determination to free themselves from definition by male culture, wanting not only to "take back the night" but also to reclaim their bodies, their minds, and their cultural identity. It demonstrates as well that the feminist revolution was enacted by women from all backgrounds, of every color, and of all ages and that it took place in the home, in workplaces, and on the streets of every major town and city. This sweeping overview of the key decades in the feminist revolution also brings together for the first time many of these women's own unpublished stories, which together offer tribute to the daring, humor, and creative spirit of its participants.

Bonnie Morris taught women's history for 22 years at both George Washington University and Georgetown, and is now a lecturer in the Gender and Women's Studies Department at UC-Berkeley. She is the award-winning author of 14 books, and a 17-year scoring reader for the AP U.S. History exam.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Shannon Watts - Fight Like a Mother (Corte Madera Store)

Sunday, December 8, 2019 - 1:00pm

Shannon Watts was a stay-at-home mom folding laundry when news of the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary flashed across the television screen. In one moment, she went from outraged to engaged and decided to do something about it. What started as a simple Facebook group to connect with other frustrated parents grew into Moms Demand Action, a national movement with millions of supporters and a powerful grassroots network of local chapters in all 50 states. Shannon has been called "the NRA’s worst nightmare”—and her army of moms have bravely gone up against the gun lobby, showing up in their signature red shirts, blocking the hallways of congress with their strollers, electing gun sense candidates, and running for office themselves, proving that if the 80 million moms in this country come together, they can put an end to gun violence.

Fight Like a Mother is the incredible account how one mother’s cry for change became the driving force behind gun safety progress. Along with stories of perseverance, courage, and compassion, Watts shines a light on the unique power of women—starting with what they have, leading with their maternal strengths, and doubling down instead of backing down. While not everyone can be on the front lines lobbying congress, every mom is already a multi-tasking organizer, and Shannon explains how to go from amateur activist to having a real impact in your community and beyond. Fight Like a Mother will inspire everyone—mothers and fathers, students and teachers, lawmakers, and anyone motivated to enact change—to get to work transforming hearts and minds, and passing laws that save lives.

Shannon Watts is the founder of Mom's Demand Action for Gun Sense in America—the leading force for gun violence prevention, with chapters in all 50 states and a powerful grassroots network of moms that has successfully effected change at the local, state and national level. In 2013, MDA partnered with Mayors Against Illegal Guns to form Everytown for Gun Safety, nationwide movement of millions of Americans working together to end the epidemic of gun violence. She is an active board member of Emerge America and Rise to Run, two of the nation's leading organizations for recruiting and training women to run for office. Watts is a contributor to The Huffington Post, and Medium. Her writing has appeared in Vogue, Time, The Washington Post, and others. She is a mother of five.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

CANCELLED: Brian Eyler - Last Days of the Mighty Mekong (Corte Madera Store)

Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - 7:00pm

Please note: Due to the PG&E power shutoffs, this event has been cancelled.
Co-sponsored by Roots of Peace

Long known for its natural beauty, remoteness, and abundance of wildlife, the Mekong river basin runs through China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. It is home to more than seventy million people and has for centuries been one of the world’s richest agricultural zones. Today however it is undergoing profound changes. China’s development policies aim to interconnect the region through high-speed transportation networks and to transform its people into modern urbanized consumers. By 2025 a series of dams will have harnessed the river’s energy, bringing an end to its natural cycles and cutting off food supplies for over half of the basin’s population. Yet there has been little reporting on this monumental change.

In The Last Days of the Mekong, Brian Eyler takes us on a revealing tour of the Mekong and those who depend on its resources. He travels from the river’s headwaters in China to its delta in Southern Vietnam. Along the way he meets the region’s diverse peoples, from villagers to community leaders to politicians and policymakers. Through conversations with them, he reveals how China’s expansionist policies are drastically—and often literally—reshaping environments. He also highlights the work being done by locals and international groups to save the Mekong and its fragile ecosystem. Eyler makes the case that there are environmentally-sound solutions, but argues these can only come about from serious cooperation and an increased pressure from the international community.

Brian Eyler is director of the IES Abroad Kunming Center at Yunnan University. He has previously worked at Beijing Foreign Studies University and as a researcher at the University of California, San Diego.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

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