Sometimes all you want is a big, juicy, dramatic book to consume all of your free time. Something like Alexander Chee's The Queen of the Night: a dramatic, ambitious trip though a famous opera singer's life during the Second French Empire. Chee comes to San Francisco this month to celebrate the publication of his new novel, just 13 years after beginning work on it. He's just one of a choice selection of authors to be making the rounds in the Bay Area during these cold sun days of late winter.
Wednesday, Feb. 10: Yann Martel at Kepler's Books, Menlo Park
In 2001, Yann Martel had a big hit on his hands with Life of Pi, a parable involving a boy, a boat, and a tiger. The book became a global phenomenon and was made into a visually stunning film, directed by Ang Lee. Martel's new novel, The High Mountains of Portugal, again dabbles in faith and animals. A quest, a ghost story, and a contemporary fable all rolled into one, the novel promises to mix the same sense of mystery, grief, love, and magic as its predecessor. Details here
Saturday, Feb. 13: One Year Anniversary Party at Liminal, Oakland.
Gina Goldblatt founded Liminal, a feminist writing space in Oakland, as a place where those who feel excluded from the mainstream literary establishment might find community, workshops, and support for the often difficult writing life. Deviance: Inhabit the Liminal Space celebrates the first year of life for this crucial space, and features readings by Daphne Gottleib, Alexandra Naughton, Lauren Traetto, Annah Anti-Palindrome, Lake Lady, Indira Allegra, Alexandra Kostoulas, Liz Green, Brenda Usher-Carpino, Jezebel Delilah X, Chani Bockwinkel, Mk Chavez, Maw Shein Win, Hanna Pesha and Mg Roberts, Joy Elan and Aquelia M. Lewis. Details here