Corte Madera Events

Laura McKowen - We Are the Luckiest (Corte Madera Store)

Thursday, February 6, 2020 - 7:00pm

What could possibly be "lucky" about addiction? Absolutely nothing, thought Laura McKowen when drinking brought her to her knees. As she puts it, she "kicked and screamed...wishing for something—anything—else" to be her issue. The people who got to drink normally, she thought, were so damn lucky.

But in the midst of early sobriety, when no longer able to anesthetize her pain and anxiety, she realized that she was actually the lucky one. Lucky to feel her feelings, live honestly, really be with her daughter, change her legacy. She recognized that "those of us who answer the invitation to wake up, whatever our invitation, are really the luckiest of all."

In straight-talking chapters filled with personal stories, McKowen addresses issues such as facing facts, the question of AA, and other people's drinking. Without sugarcoating the struggles of sobriety, We Are the Luckiest relentlessly emphasizes the many blessings of an honest life, one without secrets and debilitating shame.

Laura McKowen had a successful career in public relations and the Mad Men-esque drinking culture of advertising. After getting sober, she became recognized as a fresh voice in recovery, beloved for her soulful and irreverent writing online and in print. She now leads sold-out retreats and courses, teaching people how to say yes to a bigger life. She lives outside Boston.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Nita Winter & Rob Badger - Beauty and the Beast (Corte Madera Store)

Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 11:00am

Climate change and other human impacts on the environment are threatening wildflowers and the life that depends on them. In this special and timely work, conservation photographers Nita Winter and Rob Badger give us a spectacular view of California’s extraordinary wildflowers as both a cause for celebration and protection.

Beauty and the Beast pairs the couple’s striking field photography with thought-provoking and inspiring essays by authors like Robin Wall Kimmerer, Jose Gonzalez, Peter Raven, Mary Ellen Hannibal, Ileene Anderson, and more.

Enjoy this stunning visual tour of California’s wildflowers and renew your resolve to care for this precious place we call California!

Nita Winter and Rob Badger are internationally acclaimed, award-winning photographers who have been life partners and creative collaborators for over three decades. Rob's first environmental assignment (1980) was documenting the effects of groundwater pumping in California's Owens Valley. Since then, he has photographed more than thirty projects for land-conservation groups throughout the world. Nita began her photographic career nearly forty years ago documenting her work fighting wildfires in Northern California. Her first major exhibit, The Children of the Tenderloin, was first shown in 1986 in San Francisco. It was followed by 7 exhibits and public art projects celebrating the Bay Area's ethnic diversity. Their media credits include Time, Mother Jones, Flora and Sierra Magazines and the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Washington Post. WinterBadger fine art prints and architectural installations have been commissioned by Kaiser Permanente, Sutter Health, the San Francisco Arts Commission, the Alameda County Arts Commission, and the James Irvine Foundation.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Andy Weinberger - An Old Man's Game (Corte Madera Store)

Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 1:00pm

Beginning when a controversial celebrity rabbi drops dead over his matzoh ball soup at the famed Canter's Deli in Los Angeles, An Old Man's Game follows retired private eye Amos Parisman—a sixtyish, no-nonsense Jewish detective who lives with his addled wife in Park La Brea—who is hired by the temple's board to make sure everything is kosher. As he looks into what seems to be a simple, tragic accident, the ante is raised when more people start to die or disappear, and Amos uncovers a world of treachery and hurt that shakes a large L.A. Jewish community to its core.

Andy Weinberger is a longtime bookseller who opened Readers' Books in Sonoma, California, with his wife, Lilla Weinberger, in 1991. Born in New York, he grew up in the Los Angeles area and studied poetry and Chinese history at the University of New Mexico. He lives in Sonoma, where Readers' Books continues to thrive. This is his first novel.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Kristin Morrison - The Hiring Handbook for Pet Sitters and Dog Walkers (Corte Madera Store)

Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 4:00pm

What if hiring were easy? Wouldn't you like to know how to attract and retain the ideal staff for your pet sitting and dog walking business? To be able to take a sick day, a long vacation, or simply a day off while your business continues to meet you and your client’s needs—and earn you money?

The Hiring Handbook for Pet Sitters and Dog Walkers will take you through every aspect of the hiring process, from finding the right people, to effectively managing them, to knowing what to do if it’s time to let them go. Plus, you’ll receive expert instruction on exactly what you need to make a great hire now. This book has all the information you need to succeed with pet business hiring!

Over the course of nearly two decades running her pet business, author and pet business coach Kristin Morrison hired over 250 people. When she sold her business in its 18th year, she had 35 staff members and 4 managers.

Now is your chance to take all the stress and overwhelm out of hiring staff in your own pet business. Whether you’re looking to hire your first staff members, make the transition from contractors to employees or expand your existing staff, everything you need to succeed on your hiring journey is in this book.

Kristin Morrison is the author of five books for pet business owners. Kristin started her pet sitting and dog walking company in 1995 and it grew to be one of the largest pet care companies in California before she sold it eighteen years later. She hired over 250 pet sitters and dog walkers during the course of running her business and when she sold it, her business had 35 staff members and 4 managers.

Since 2000, Kristin has provided pet business coaching for thousands of pet sitters, dog walkers, and other service-based pet business owners from across the United States, Canada, UK, and Australia. Kristin is the founder of Six-Figure Pet Sitting Academy™ and Six-Figure Pet Business Academy™ which provides pet business coaching, webinars, and business products for pet sitters, dog walkers, dog trainers, pet groomers and dog daycare owners. 

Kristin is a nationally recognized speaker at pet business conferences. She also hosts a podcast called Prosperous Pet Business which can be found on iTunes and wherever podcasts are available. Kristin lives in Marin County with her husband, Spencer Jackson and a pushy, lovable neighborhood cat who has adopted them.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Left Coast Writers® Launch: Antoinette Constable - Natalie in the Shadow of the Swastika (Corte Madera Store)

Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 7:00pm

Author Antoinette Constable, who was a young girl in WWII France, has written a compelling coming-of-age novel for young adult readers, Natalie in the Shadow of the Swastika. Set in 1940 occupied Paris, eight-year-old Natalie and her family—a Jewish mother, gentile father, and two sisters—cope with the harsh facts of war and Hitler’s occupying army. When her ailing father suddenly disappears, Natalie’s safe surroundings are forever changed. Her struggles with the painful family separation and the dangerous threats against her Jewish mother reveal a growing maturity in the face of confusing loss. Natalie’s fierce resolve to hold onto hope and her love of family leads her from innocence to understanding and resilience, despite the violence of war.

Born and raised in France, Antoinette Constable was a career nurse holding British and American degrees, and is also retired from her own catering business. She has lived in the United States for many years, where she raised her four children as a single mother. Her work has won the PEN First Prize for Poetry, as well as the Ann Stanford Award from the University of Southern California, and has appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, Barnabe Mountain Review, Bay Area Poets Coalition, California Quarterly (CQ), Denver Metropolitan State Magazine, The Healing Muse, Louisville Review, and POEM. Her chapbook of war-related poems, The Lasting War, was published in December 2014.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Dog Lovers Weekend: Doggy Valentine Day with Mark Rogers (Corte Madera Store)

Sunday, February 9, 2020 - 1:00pm

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with unconditional love!

Mark Roger’s book, Canines of San Francisco is a love story of our dogs and our home here in the Bay. Mark, a renowned animal photographer, photographed all kinds of dogs, many of whom are rescue dogs, in the most iconic spots in the Bay Area.

Join us at this special event where he will demonstrate how to capture beautiful shots of your dog. Good dogs will get treats!

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Eoin Colfer - Highfire (Corte Madera Store)

Sunday, February 9, 2020 - 4:00pm

In the days of yore, he flew the skies and scorched angry mobs—now he hides from swamp tour boats and rises only with the greatest reluctance from his Laz-Z-Boy recliner. Laying low in the bayou, this once-magnificent fire breather has been reduced to lighting Marlboros with nose sparks, swilling Absolut in a Flashdance T-shirt, and binging Netflix in a fishing shack. For centuries, he struck fear in hearts far and wide as Wyvern, Lord Highfire of the Highfire Eyrie—now he goes by Vern. However...he has survived, unlike the rest. He is the last of his kind, the last dragon. Still, no amount of vodka can drown the loneliness in his molten core. Vern’s glory days are long gone. Or are they?

A canny Cajun swamp rat, young Everett “Squib” Moreau does what he can to survive, trying not to break the heart of his saintly single mother. He’s finally decided to work for a shady smuggler—but on his first night, he witnesses his boss murdered by a crooked constable.

Regence Hooke is not just a dirty cop, he’s a despicable human being—who happens to want Squib’s momma in the worst way. When Hooke goes after his hidden witness with a grenade launcher, Squib finds himself airlifted from certain death by…a dragon?

The swamp can make strange bedfellows, and rather than be fried alive so the dragon can keep his secret, Squib strikes a deal with the scaly apex predator. He can act as his go-between (aka familiar)—fetch his vodka, keep him company, etc.—in exchange for protection from Hooke. Soon the three of them are careening headlong toward a combustible confrontation. There’s about to be a fiery reckoning, in which either dragons finally go extinct—or Vern’s glory days are back.

A triumphant return to the genre-bending fantasy that Eoin Colfer is so well known for, Highfire is an effortlessly clever and relentlessly funny tour-de-force of comedy and action.

Eoin Colfer is the internationally bestselling author of the Artemis Fowl series, as well as several standalone novels, including the highly acclaimed Airman. His newest series is W.A.R.P. Eoin was born and raised in Ireland, where he was appointed Children's Laureate. Eoin has two imaginary friends who are hilarious because they insist they are his actual sons and need stuff like food and clothing.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Shauna Shapiro with Rick Hanson - Good Morning, I Love You (Corte Madera Store)

Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 7:00pm

In conversation with Rick Hanson

All signs pointed to a promising future for the vibrant 17-year-old. Her entire life lay before her. The possibilities seemed bright and limitless—until they weren’t.

Shauna Shapiro was the star of her high school volleyball team and had just accepted early admission to Duke University when an early childhood health problem remerged, leading to emergency spinal surgery. Instead of finishing up high school with her peers and preparing for her freshman year of college, Shauna was living in pain, both mentally and physically with little reprieve. It wasn’t until she was given a copy of Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Wherever You Go, There You Are that she realized she could be happy again by practicing mindfulness. Flash-forward four years when Shauna is making her practice a reality, visiting and meditating among monks and nuns in Nepal and Thailand. Yet, even with all of the time she’d put into her practice back home, something here was different. It was harder; her mind wandered, and her frustration with herself took over. It became less about what Shauna could do, and more about what she couldn’t.

That is, until she met a monk who said five simple words that she’ll never forget—what you practice grows stronger.

It was then when Shauna realized what mindfulness truly is. That it’s not just about paying attention. It’s about how you pay attention—with kindness. That’s where the magic is. Because kindness changes everything. In her debut book, Good Morning, I Love You: Mindfulness + Self-Compassion Practices to Rewire Your Brain for Calm, Clarity + Joy, she draws on both her 20+ years of clinical experience and the remarkable research she’s compiled over the years, addressing topics that resonate on a universal level, like:

  • How we can encourage the brain’s neuroplasticity (its ability to change itself)
  • The roadblocks to self-compassion and how we can overcome them
  • Applying mindfulness to sex, decision-making, the workplace, parenting and eating
  • Mindfulness meditation and practices for greater feelings of calm, joy, and possibility

Dr. Shapiro’s goal is to teach us not only what mindfulness is but how mindfulness can work when used effectively. When it’s oversimplified, it loses its radical transformational power. Because it’s not just about paying attention, it’s how you pay attention—with kindness. What we practice grows stronger.

Shauna Shapiro, PHD, is a clinical psychologist and internationally recognized expert in mindfulness and self-compassion. She is a widely published scholar whose TEDx talk, “The Power of Mindfulness”, has been viewed over one million times. She is a professor at Santa Clara University and a fellow of the Dalai Lama’s Mind and Life Institute. Dr. Shapiro lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. For more information, visit

Rick Hanson, Ph.D., is a psychologist, Senior Fellow of the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley, and New York Times best-selling author. His books are available in 26 languages and include Resilient, Hardwiring Happiness, Buddha’s Brain, Just One Thing, and Mother Nurture. He edits the Wise Brain Bulletin and has numerous audio programs. A summa cum laude graduate of UCLA and founder of the Wellspring Institute for Neuroscience and Contemplative Wisdom, he’s been an invited speaker at NASA, Oxford, Stanford, Harvard, and other major universities, and taught in meditation centers worldwide. His work has been featured on the BBC, CBS, and NPR, and he offers the free Just One Thing newsletter with over 120,000 subscribers, plus the online Foundations of Well-Being program in positive neuroplasticity that anyone with financial need can do for free.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Katy Butler - The Art of Dying Well (Corte Madera Store)

Wednesday, February 12, 2020 - 7:00pm

“A common sense path to define what a ‘good’ death looks like” (USA TODAY), The Art of Dying Well is about living as well as possible for as long as possible and adapting successfully to change. Packed with extraordinarily helpful insights and inspiring true stories, award-winning journalist Katy Butler shows how to thrive in later life (even when coping with a chronic medical condition), how to get the best from our health system, and how to make your own “good death” more likely. Butler explains how to successfully age in place, why to pick a younger doctor and how to have an honest conversation with them, when not to call 911, and how to make your death a sacred rite of passage rather than a medical event. This handbook of preparations—practical, communal, physical, and spiritual—will help you make the most of your remaining time, be it decades, years, or months.

Based on Butler’s experience caring for aging parents, and hundreds of interviews with people who have successfully navigated our fragmented health system and helped their loved ones have good deaths, The Art of Dying Well also draws on the expertise of national leaders in family medicine, palliative care, geriatrics, oncology, and hospice. This “empowering guide clearly outlines the steps necessary to prepare for a beautiful death without fear” (Shelf Awareness).

Katy Butler’s articles have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The Best American Science Writing, and The Best American Essays. A finalist for a National Magazine Award, she lives in Northern California. She is the author of Knocking on Heaven’s Door.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Special Event: Toni Morrison, A Literary Legend Remembered (Corte Madera Store)

Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 7:00pm

As one of the icons of literature, Toni Morrison changed the world with her words, influencing generations of readers and writers. The literary and publishing worlds continue to mourn her recent passing while also celebrating her life. As such, and in conjunction with her birthday, Book Passage will honor her with a special event celebration featuring Bay Area authors, booksellers, and you, the community. We’ll read passages from her novels and share stories of her impact.

Authors attending include:

Jose Antonio Vargas
A Pulitzer Prize- winning journalist, Emmy-nominated filmmaker, and a leading voice for the human rights of immigrants. His debut book, Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen is a best-selling memoir.

Carolina de Robertis
Author of the novels Cantoras, a finalist for the Kirkus Prize and a New York Times Editors’ Choice; The Gods of Tango; Perla; and the international bestseller The Invisible Mountain. Her books have been translated into seventeen languages and have received numerous other honors.

Jacqueline Luckett
Author of the novels Passing Love and Searching for Tina Turner. The native Californian is currently working on a third novel and several screenplays.

Margaret Wilkerson Sexton
Her debut novel, A Kind of Freedom, was a National Book Award Nominee, a Book Passage “First Edition Club” selection, and a New York Times Notable Book of 2017.

C Pam Zhang
Born across one ocean, dragged over another. Went willingly every time after. Strange stories. Reluctant realist. Brown / Cambridge / Iowa educated. Lived in 13 cities & still pondering home. Currently located in San Francisco. Her debut novel, How Much of These Hills is Gold is coming next spring.

Tom Barbash
Author of the short story collection Stay Up With Me, a New York Times Editor's Choice and picked as a Best Book of the Year by NPR and the San Francisco Chronicle, and the novels The Last Good Chance, awarded the California Book Award, and The Dakota Winters.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925