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in conversation with Don George

Wade Davis‘ inspiring tale of hope and redemption, Magdalena: River of Dreams, braids together memoir, history, and journalism to form both a rare, kaleidoscopic picture of Colombia’s most magnificent river and the epic story of a nation on the verge of a new period of peace.

Wade is a writer, photographer, and filmmaker whose work has taken him from the Amazon to Tibet, Africa to Australia, Polynesia to the Arctic. Explorer-in-Residence at the National Geographic Society from 2000 to 2013, he is currently Professor of Anthropology and the BC Leadership Chair in Cultures and Ecosystems at Risk at the University of British Columbia.

Author of 22 books, including One River, The Wayfinders, and Into the Silence, winner of the 2012 Samuel Johnson prize, the top nonfiction prize in the English language, he holds degrees in anthropology and biology and received his Ph.D. in ethnobotany, all from Harvard University. His many film credits include Light at the Edge of the World, an eight-hour documentary series written and produced for the NGS.

Wade, one of 20 Honorary Members of the Explorers Club, is the recipient of 12 honorary degrees, as well as the 2009 Gold Medal from the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, the 2011 Explorers Medal, the 2012 David Fairchild Medal for botanical exploration, the 2015 Centennial Medal of Harvard University, the 2017 Roy Chapman Andrews Society’s Distinguished Explorer Award, the 2017 Sir Christopher Ondaatje Medal for Exploration, and the 2018 Mungo Park Medal from the Royal Scottish Geographical Society. In 2016, he was made a Member of the Order of Canada. In 2018, he became an Honorary Citizen of Colombia.

Don George is an editor-at-large for National Geographic Traveler magazine, as well as host of the National Geographic Live series of conversations with notable authors. In four decades as a travel writer and editor, Don has visited more than 90 countries on five continents. He has traveled throughout—and written extensively about—Europe and Asia. He has also lived in France, Greece, and Japan, working as a translator in Paris, a teacher in Athens, and a television talk show host in Tokyo. Don is the author of The Way of Wanderlust: The Best Travel Writing of Don George, and has received dozens of writing awards, including the Lowell Thomas Travel Journalist of the Year Award.

in conversation with Amitava Kumar

Ayad Akhtar new novel Homeland Elegies is the profound and provocative story an immigrant father and his son search for belonging — in post-Trump America, and with each other.

Ayad is a novelist and playwright. His work has been published and performed in over two dozen languages. He is the winner of numerous awards, including the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and an Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Ayad is the author of American Dervish, published in over 20 languages and named a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2012. As a playwright, he has written Junk (Lincoln Center, Broadway; Kennedy Prize for American Drama, Tony nomination); Disgraced (Lincoln Center, Broadway; Pulitzer Prize for Drama, Tony nomination); The Who & The What (Lincoln Center); and The Invisible Hand (NYTW; Obie Award, Outer Critics Circle John Gassner Award, Olivier, and Evening Standard nominations). As a screenwriter, he was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay for The War Within.

Amitava Kumar is the author of several books of non-fiction and two novels. His novel Immigrant, Montana was named one of the best books of the year by The New Yorker and The New York Times—and included in Barack Obama’s list of favorite books of 2018. Among Kumar’s honors are a Guggenheim fellowship and a fellowship from USArtists. His writing has appeared in GrantaHarper’s MagazineThe GuardianThe Nation, and The New York Times. Kumar is the Helen D. Lockwood Professor of English at Vassar College. His new novel, A Time Outside This Time, will be published by Knopf in 2021.

in conversation with Lisa Ling

Clarissa Ward’s remarkable new memoir On All Fronts is the unforgettable story of an extraordinary journalist and a changing world.

Clarissa is CNN’s chief international correspondent. In her fifteen-year career spanning Fox, CBS, and ABC, she has reported from front lines across the world. Clarissa has won five Emmy Awards, two George Foster Peabody Awards, an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award, two Edward R. Murrow Awards for distinguished journalism, honors from the Radio and Television Correspondents’ Association, the 2016 David Kaplan Award from the Overseas Press Club, and the Excellence in International Reporting Award from the International Center for Journalists. She graduated with distinction from Yale University, and in 2013 received an honorary doctor of letters degree from Middlebury College in Vermont. She lives in London.

Lisa Ling is the executive producer and host of This is Life with Lisa Ling, on CNN. For five seasons prior, Lisa executive produced and hosted Our America on OWN: the Oprah Winfrey Network. As the former field correspondent for The Oprah Winfrey Show and contributor to ABC News’ Nightline  and National Geographic’s Explorer, Lisa has reported from dozens of countries, covering stories about gang rape in the Congo, bride burning in India, the Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda and the Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) gang in Central America, Lisa is the co-author of Mother, Daughter, Sister, Bride: Rituals of Womanhood  and Somewhere Inside: One Sister’s Captivity in North Korea and the Other’s Fight to Bring Her Home, which she penned with her sister, Laura. She is also a co-founder of SecretSocietyofWomen.com, and a contributor to ivolunteer.org.

in conversation with Joel Richard Paul

Bill Petrocelli’s newest book, Electoral Bait & Switch  argues that the Electoral College has changed from the institution that the framers of the Constitution intended to President a mere rubber-stamp operation with only one function: to distort the result of the popular vote for President.

Bill is an author, attorney, and co-owner of Book Passage, the fiercely independent bookstore in Corte Madera, California, and at the San Francisco Ferry Building. In addition to several years in private practice, Bill has also served as a California Deputy Attorney General, the head of a poverty law office in Oakland, a member of the Board of the American Booksellers Association and an attorney for the Northern California Independent Booksellers Association. He is a frequent advocate on women’s issues and on the problems of local businesses.

Bill is also the author of Low Profile: How to Avoid the Privacy Invaders and Sexual Harassment on the Job: What it is and How to Stop It, the first book published on the subject of stopping workplace harassment and sexual violence. He has also written two novels: The Circle of Thirteen and Through the Bookstore Window, which Foreword Magazine calls “an unusual, rewarding take on the nature of memory: how it haunts and heals, how single moments set the future in motion, and how it binds survivors together in ways they seldom expect.”

Joel Richard Paul is a Professor of Constitutional Law at U.C. Hastings Law School in San Francisco. He has lectured and published throughout Europe, Asia, and Latin America. He is the author of Unlikely Allies: How a Merchant, a Playwright, and a Spy Saved the American Revolution and the biography of Chief Justice John Marshall, Without Precedent: Chief Justice John Marshall and His Times.

in conversation with Cara Black

Rhys Bowen‘s latest release, The Last Mrs. Summers, reunites mystery lovers with Lady Georgiana Rannoch, who is just back from her honeymoon with dashing Darcy O’Mara when a friend in need pulls her into a twisted Gothic tale of betrayal, deception and, most definitely, murder.

Rhys is the New York Times bestselling author of more than forty novels, including The Victory GardenThe Tuscan Child, and the World War II-based In Farleigh Field, the winner of the Left Coast Crime Award for Best Historical Mystery Novel and the Agatha Award for Best Historical Novel.

Her work has won twenty honors to date, including multiple Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity awards. Her books have been translated into many languages, and she has fans around the world, including seventeen thousand Facebook followers. A transplanted Brit, Rhys  divides her time between California and Arizona.

Cara Black is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 19 books in the Private Investigator Aimée Leduc series, which is set in Paris. Cara has received multiple nominations for the Anthony and Macavity Awards, a Washington Post Book World Book of the Year citation, the Médaille de la Ville de Paris—the Paris City Medal, which is awarded in recognition of contribution to international culture—and invitations to be the Guest of Honor at conferences such as the Paris Polar Crime Festival and Left Coast Crime. With more than 400,000 books in print, the Aimée Leduc series has been translated into German, Norwegian, Japanese, French, Spanish, Italian, and Hebrew.

in conversation with Michael Krasny

Mary Ladd‘s The Wig Diaries is an irreverent cancer book, delivered with bold gallows humor to intimately address the gravity of cancer. Illustrated by San Francisco Chronicle cartoonist Don Asmussen, this uniquely fresh modern and black comedy covers and pokes fun at everything from diagnosis to treatment to medical bills.

Mary‘s writing has appeared in PlayboyTime MagazineHealth, the San Francisco Chronicle, and in five anthologies, including Lit Starts: Writing Humor from Abrams and the best-selling 642 Things series. You may have seen her onstage at the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley, Breast Cancer Action, Bay Area Young Survivors (BAYS) and Litquake. She is a Writers Grotto member who collaborated with Anthony Bourdain on his Bay Area episodes of No Reservations.

Don is the creator of Bad Reporter, a twice-weekly political comic strip in the San Francisco Chronicle that is syndicated by Universal Press Syndicate and the author of Dog vs. Cat: A Nation Divided and The San Francisco Comic Strip Book of Big-Ass Mocha.

Michael Krasny is the host of the award winning KQED FORUM, a program discussing news and public affairs, current events, culture, health, business and technology.

in conversation with Barbara Wright

Carl Hiaasen‘s new novel Squeeze Me is a hilarious new novel of social and political intrigue, set against the glittering backdrop of Florida’s gold coast.

Carl was born and raised in Florida, where he still lives with his family. A graduate of the University of Florida, at age 23 he joined The Miami Herald as a general assignment reporter and went on to work for the newspaper’s weekly magazine and prize-winning investigations team. Today his column appears on most Sundays in The Herald’s opinion-and-editorial section, and may be viewed online at www.herald.com.

Carl began writing novels in early 1980s with his good friend and fellow journalist, William D. Montalbano. Together they wrote three mystery thrillers – Powder Burn, Trap Line and Death in China – which borrowed heavily from their reporting experiences. Tourist Season, published in 1986, was Carl’s first solo novel. Since then, he has published Double Whammy, Skin Tight, Native Tongue and nine national bestsellers – Strip Tease, Stormy Weather, Lucky You, Sick Puppy, Basket Case, Skinny Dip, Nature Girl, Star Island and Bad Monkey. All the novels are set in Florida.

Carl is also the author of several popular novels for young readers: Hoot, which won a Newbery Honor, Flush, Scat and, most recently, Skink – No Surrender, which introduces one of the wildest characters in his adult books to a teen audience. He has also written two nonfiction books. The first, Team Rodent, is a wry but unsparing rant against the Disney empire and its grip on American culture. In 2008 came The Downhill Lie, which chronicles his ill-advised return to the sport of golf after a “much-needed” 32-year hiatus. He has also published three collections of his newspaper columns, Kick Ass, Paradise Screwed and Dance of the Reptiles.

For his journalism and commentary, Hiaasen has received numerous honors, including the Damon Runyon Award from the Denver Press Club and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. His nonfiction work has appeared in many magazines, including Sports Illustrated, Playboy, Time, Esquire and Gourmet.

Dave Barry was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for his syndicated newspaper column, which appeared in more than 500 newspapers. He has also written more than 30 books, including the novels Big Trouble, LunaticsTricky Business and, most recently, Insane City. Dave’s most recent books are Best. State. Ever.: A Florida Man Defends His HomelandLessons From Lucy: The Simple Joys of an Old, Happy Dog and A Field Guide To The Jewish People, which he co-wrote with his friends Adam Mansbach and Alan Zweibel.

in conversation with Meena Harris

Pramila Jayapal’s Use the Power You Have offers a wealth of ideas and inspiration for a new generation of engaged citizens interested in fighting back and making change, whether in Washington or in their own communities.

Pramila is the Congresswoman who represents Washington’s 7th District, which encompasses most of Seattle and surrounding areas. The first Indian American woman in the House of Representatives, Pramila has spent nearly thirty years working internationally and domestically as an advocate for women’s, immigrant, civil, and human rights. She lives in Seattle, Washington.

Meena Harris was born into a family of strong women whose legacy continues to inspire her. Her grandmother, Shyamala Gopalan, was a cancer researcher and civil rights activist; her mother, Maya Harris, is a lawyer and policy expert; and her aunt, Kamala Harris, is a United States senator from California. Meena herself is a lawyer and entrepreneur. In 2017 she founded the Phenomenal Woman Action Campaign, a female-powered organization that brings awareness to social causes. She currently resides in San Francisco with her partner and two daughters.

Meena’s Kamala and Maya’s Big Idea, an empowering picture book about two sisters who work with their community to effect change, inspired by a true story from the childhood of her aunt, US Senator Kamala Harris, and mother, lawyer, and policy expert Maya Harris.

in conversation with Barbara Wright

Ursula Hegi‘s latest novel, The Patron Saint of Pregnant Girls about three mothers, and set on the shores of the Nordsee – is testament to the ways in which women hold each other up in the most unexpected of circumstances.

Ursula was born in Germany in 1946 and immigrated to the United States as a teenager. She is the author of 12 books. Several of her novels, including Stones from the River and Floating in My Mother’s Palm, explore German and German-American identity in the 20th century. Set in Burgdorf, a fictional village in Germany, they are part of the Burgdorf Cycle, which also includes the novel, Children and Fire published in 2011.

Ursula’s work has been translated into many languages, and her awards include the Italian Grinzane Cavour, an NEA Fellowship, and a PEN/Faulkner Award. She has served as a juror for the National Book Awards and the National Book Critics Circle.

Ursula lives with her husband in in New York State. She teaches in the MFA program in Writing and Literature at Stony Brook, Southampton.

Barbara Wright is the author of three novels: Crow, Easy Money, and Plain Language, which won a Spur Award from the Western Writers of America. She grew up in North Carolina, has traveled all over the world, and lived in France, Korea, and El Salvador.  She worked as a fact-checker for Esquire and as a screenwriter.  Barbara lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband, Frank Gay.

in conversation with John Muir Laws

David Sibley’s new What it’s Like to Be a Bird is the definitive bird book for birders and nonbirders alike, one sure excite and inspire by providing a new, deeper understanding of what common, mostly backyard, birds are doing–and why.

David is the author and illustrator of the series of successful guides to nature that bear his name, including The Sibley Guide to Birds. He has contributed to Smithsonian, Science, The Wilson Journal of Ornithology, Birding, BirdWatching, and North American Birds, and to The New York Times. He is the recipient of the Roger Tory Peterson Award for Lifetime Achievement from the American Birding Association and the Linnaean Society of New York’s Eisenmann Medal. He lives and birds in Massachusetts.

John (Jack) Muir Laws has written and illustrated several books including How to Teach Nature Journaling (co-authored with Emilie Lygren), The Laws Guide to Nature Drawing and Journaling (2016), The Laws Guide to Drawing Birds (2012), Sierra Birds: a Hiker’s Guide (2004), and The Laws Field Guide to the Sierra Nevada (2007). He is a regular contributor to Bay Nature magazine with his “Naturalists Notebook” column.

in conversation with Kelly Corrigan

Darin Strauss’ new novel, The Queen of Tuesday: A Lucille Ball Story, mixes fact and fiction, memoir and novel, to explore the conceit  that the author’s grandfather may have had an affair with Hollywood’s Lucille Ball.

Darin is the acclaimed author of the memoir Half a Life, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for autobiography, a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice, an Entertainment Weekly “Must List” selection, a Chicago Tribune Editor’s Pick, and one of the Best Books of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle.  He is also the renowned author of the novels Chang and EngThe Real McCoy, and the international bestseller More Than It Hurts You. He is a compelling speaker whose experience includes universities, libraries, book festivals, and corporations.

The recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in fiction writing, Darrin is a clinical associate professor at NYU’s creative writing program.

Kelly Corrigan‘s Tell Me MoreStories About the 12 Hardest Things I’m Learning to Say is a wonderfully personal, honest, and hilarious examination of the essential phrases that make love and connection possible.

Kelly has been called “the voice of her generation” by O: The Oprah Magazine and “the poet laureate of the ordinary” by HuffPost. She is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Middle PlaceLift, and Glitter and Glue. Kelly is the host of Tell Me More with Kelly Corrigan premiering on PBS October 5 and the host of a new podcast coming from PRX, also in October

She lives near Oakland, California, with her husband, Edward Lichty, and her daughters, Georgia and Claire.

in conversation with Jordan Pavlin

Susan Minot’s new release, Why I Don’t Write, is the first collection of short fiction in thirty years from the critically acclaimed author of Monkeys, Evening, and Thirty Girls.

Susan is an award-winning novelist, short-story writer, poet, and screenwriter. Her first novel, Monkeys, was published in a dozen countries and won the Prix Femina Étranger in France. Her novel Evening was a worldwide best seller and became a major motion picture. She received her MFA from Columbia University and lives with her daughter in New York City and on an island off the coast of Maine.

Jordan Pavlin is Senior Vice President and Editorial Director at Alfred A. Knopf.

in conversation with Susannah Cahalan

Dr. Christine Montross’ important new work, Waiting for an Echo, reveals the psychological toll of incarceration and examines how we disproportionately punish people of color, people who are poor, and people who are mentally ill.

A 2015 Guggenheim Fellow in Nonfiction, Christine is Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. She is a practicing inpatient psychiatrist and performs forensic psychiatric examinations. She completed medical school and residency training at Brown University, where she received the Isaac Ray Award in Psychiatry and the Martin B. Keller Outstanding Brown Psychiatry Resident Award.

Her first book, Body of Work, was named an Editors’ Choice by The New York Times and one of The Washington Post’s best nonfiction books of 2007. Her second book, Falling Into the Fire, was named a New Yorker Book to Watch Out For. She has also written for many national publications including The New York Times, The New England Journal of Medicine, The Washington Post Book World, Good Housekeeping and O, The Oprah Magazine.

Christine has been named a 2017-2018 Faculty Fellow at the Cogut Center for the Humanities, a 2010 MacColl Johnson Fellow in Poetry, and the winner of the 2009 Eugene and Marilyn Glick Emerging Indiana Authors Award. She has also had several poems published in literary journals, and her manuscript Embouchure was a finalist for the National Poetry Series.

Susannah Cahalan is the award-winning, New York Times bestselling, author of The Great Pretender: The Undercover Mission That Changed Our Understanding of Madness as well as Brain On Fire: My Month Of Madness, a memoir about her struggle with a rare autoimmune disease of the brain. She lives in Brooklyn with her family.

in conversation with Phil Cousineau

John Shea is the co-writer of the instant New York Times and San Francisco Chronicle bestseller  24: Life Stories and Lessons from the Say Hey Kid in which the legendary Willie Mays shares the inspirations and influences responsible for guiding him on and off the field.

John is the San Francisco Chronicle’s national baseball writer and columnist. He is in his 33rd year covering baseball, including 28 in the Bay Area. He wrote three baseball books, including Rickey Henderson’s biography (Confessions of a Thief) and Magic by the Bay, an account of the 1989 World Series.

John has also won several Associated Press Sports Editors awards, including first place in the nation for a World Series game story. He’s a two-time Bay Area chairman of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America and created the Bill Rigney Good Guy Award, given each year to a Giant and Athletic who is most accommodating to the media.

Phil Cousineau is an award-winning writer and filmmaker, teacher and editor, lecturer, and travel leader, storyteller and TV host. His fascination with the art, literature, and history of culture has taken him from Michigan to Marrakesh, Iceland to the Amazon, in a worldwide search for what the ancients called the “soul of the world.” With more than 35 books and 15 scriptwriting credits to his name, the “omnipresent influence of myth in modern life” is a thread that runs through all of his work. His books include Stoking the Creative FiresOnce and Future MythsThe Art of PilgrimageThe Hero’s JourneyWordcatcherThe Painted WordThe Oldest Story in the WorldThe Book of Roads, and The Accidental Aphorist.

in conversation with Ayelet Waldman

Michelle Bowdler’s debut blend of memoir and cultural investigation, Is Rape a Crime?, tells the story of her rape and recovery while interrogating why one of society’s most serious crimes goes largely uninvestigated.

Michelle is a recipient of a 2017 Barbara Deming Memorial Award for non-fiction and has been a Fellow at Ragdale and MacDowell Colony. She has been published in the New York Times and in the anthologies The Anatomy of Silence (Red Press) and We Rise to Resist: Voices from a New Era in Women’s Political Action (McFarland). Her essays: Eventually You Tell Your Kids and Babelogue were both nominated for Pushcart Prizes.

Ayelet Waldman is the author of A Really Good Day: How Microdosing Made a Mega Difference in My Mood, My Marriage, and My Life, the novels Love and TreasureRed Hook RoadLove and Other Impossible Pursuits, and Daughter’s Keeper, as well as of the essay collection Bad Mother: A Chronicle of Maternal Crimes, Minor Calamities, and Occasional Moments of Grace and the Mommy-Track Mystery series. She is the editor of Inside This Place, Not of It: Narratives from Women’s Prisons and of  Kingdom of Olives and Ash: Writers Confront the Occupation.

in conversation with Elizabeth McCracken

Yiyun Li‘s new novel Must I Go tells the story of a woman reflecting on her uncompromising life, and the life of a former lover.

She is the author of the novels Where Reasons End, Kinder Than Solitude, A Thousand Years of Good Prayers, The Vagrants, and Gold Boy, Emerald Girl—and the memoir Dear Friend, from My Life I Write to You in Your Life. She is also the recipient of many awards, including a PEN/Hemingway Award, a PEN/Jean Stein Book Award, a MacArthur Foundation fellowship, and a Windham-Campbell Prize, and was featured in The New Yorker’s 20 Under 40 fiction issue.

Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, A Public Space, The Best American Short Stories, and The O. Henry Prize Stories, among other publications. She teaches at Princeton University and lives in Princeton, New Jersey.

Elizabeth McCracken is the author of six books: Here’s Your Hat What’s Your HurryThe Giant’s House, Niagara Falls All Over AgainAn Exact Replica of a Figment of My ImaginationThunderstruck & Other Stories, and the forthcoming Bowlaway.  She’s received grants and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Liguria Study Center, the American Academy in Berlin, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. Thunderstruck & Other Stories won the 2015 Story Prize.

She has taught creative writing at Western Michigan University, the University of Oregon, the University of Houston, and the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop.  She holds the James A. Michener Chair in Fiction at the University of Texas, Austin, and boy are her arms tired.

in conversation with Arjun Moorthy

Jordan Blashek and Christopher Haugh’s just-released Union: A Democrat, a Republican, and a Search for Common Ground, is the story of the two friends’ three-year journey across America. One a Republican and one a Democrat, they traveled together through 44 states and along 20,000 miles of road to find out exactly where the American experiment stands at the close of the second decade of the 21st Century.

Jordan is a military veteran and businessman from Los Angeles. After college, he spent five years in the US Marine Corps as an infantry officer, serving two combat tours overseas, in Afghanistan and the Middle East. He holds degrees from Yale Law School, Stanford Graduate School of Business, and Princeton University. He is based in New York, where he invests in entrepreneurial efforts to grow the American middle class as part of Schmidt Futures, a new philanthropic venture created by Eric and Wendy Schmidt.

Christopher is a speechwriter and journalist from the Bay Area. He attended UC Berkeley and Oxford University and started speechwriting as an intern in the Obama White House. He went on to join the U.S. Department of State’s Policy Planning Staff where he served as a speechwriter to the Secretary. In 2018, he graduated from Yale Law School where he was a Yale Journalism Scholar. Chris is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and New York.

Arjun Moorthy is CEO and co-founder the Factual– a company that finds and delivers the most credible stories on the most important news topics using a transparent, unbiased machine-learning engine.

in conversation with Emily Krump

Sara Paretsky’s latest release Love & Other Crimes, is a collection of 14 stories about Chicago shamus V.I. Warshawski, her friends and family, and a remarkably diverse group of other people.

Sara revolutionized the mystery world in 1982 when she introduced V I Warshawski in Indemnity Only. By creating a believable investigator with the grit and the smarts to tackle problems on the mean streets, She challenged a genre in which women typically were either vamps or victims. Hailed by critics and readers, Indemnity Only was followed by nineteen more best-selling Warshawski novels. Publishers Weekly says, “Among today’s PIs, nobody comes close to Warshawski.”

Called “passionate” and “electrifying,” V.I. reflects her creator’s own passion for social justice. As a contributor to the New York Times and the Guardian newspapers, and a speaker at such venues as the Library of Congress and Oxford University, Sara is an impassioned advocate for those on society’s margins. She has mentored teens in Chicago’s most troubled schools, and works closely with literacy and reproductive rights groups.

Not only has Sara own work broken barriers, she has helped open doors for other women. In 1986 she created Sisters in Crime, a worldwide organization to support women crime writers, which earned her Ms. Magazine’s 1987 Woman of the Year award. Other awards include the British Crime Writers Cartier Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement; the Mystery Writers of America Grand Master; and a number ofhonorary doctorates. Her work is celebrated in Pamela Beere Briggs’s documentary, Women of Mystery. Her books are published in 30 countries.

Executive Editor Emily Krump has been with William Morrow since 2006. She works on a wide range of projects with award-winning and bestselling authors, but is most passionate about smart, commercial fiction and suspense. Recent and upcoming titles include November Road by Lou Berney, You, Me, and the Sea by Meg Donohue, The Silent Treatment by Abbie Greaves, Never Have I Ever by Joshilyn Jackson, The Brilliant Life of Eudora Honeysett by Annie Lyons, To Tell You the Truth by Gilly Macmillan, Dead Lands by Sara Paretsky, The Lucky One by Lori Rader-Day, The Book of M by Peng Shepherd, The Silent Wife by Karin Slaughter, and A Divided Loyalty by Charles Todd among others.

in conversation with Cara Black

Laurie R. King‘s Riviera Gold brings back Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes – this to the Riviera, where they’re challenged to crack their most captivating case yet.

In her Russell & Holmes stories, Laurie explores ideas—the roots of conflict in the Middle East and Afghanistan; feminism and early Christianity; patriotism and individual responsibility—while also having a rousing good time. Five of Laurie’s novels concern San Francisco homicide inspector Kate Martinelli, Kate’s SFPD partner Al Hawkin, and her life partner Lee Cooper. Her stand-alone suspense novels include A Darker Place, Folly and Keeping WatchShe has also collaborated on nonfiction works including Crime & Thriller Writing and The Grand Game, and on several short story anthologies.  

Laurie is the third generation in her family native to the San Francisco area. She spent her childhood reading her way through libraries up and down the West Coast; her middle years raising children, renovating houses, traveling the world, and doing a BA and MA in theology.  (Her long autobiography goes into detail about how she uses these interests.) She now lives a genteel life of crime, on California’s central coast.

Cara Black is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 19 books in the Private Investigator Aimée Leduc series, which is set in Paris. Cara has received multiple nominations for the Anthony and Macavity Awards, a Washington Post Book World Book of the Year citation, the Médaille de la Ville de Paris—the Paris City Medal, which is awarded in recognition of contribution to international culture—and invitations to be the Guest of Honor at conferences such as the Paris Polar Crime Festival and Left Coast Crime. With more than 400,000 books in print, the Aimée Leduc series has been translated into German, Norwegian, Japanese, French, Spanish, Italian, and Hebrew.

in conversation with Susan Orlean

James McBride’s Deacon King Kong was already one of the most celebrated novels of the year – before it was selected by Oprah Winfrey as her Oprah Book Club Pick.  “In a moment when our country roils with righteous anger and grief,” Oprah says, “Deacon King Kong reminds us that when we come together as a community in compassion and empathy, our love triumphs.”

James is an award-winning author, musician, and screenwriter. His landmark memoir, The Color of Water, published in 1996, has sold millions of copies and spent more than two years on the New York Times bestseller list. Considered an American classic, it is read in schools and universities across the United States. His debut novel, Miracle at St. Anna, was turned into a 2008 film by Oscar-winning writer and director Spike Lee, with a script written by James. His 2013 novel, The Good Lord Bird, about American abolitionist John Brown, won the National Book Award for Fiction and will be a Showtime limited series in fall 2020 starring Ethan Hawke.

Susan Orlean has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1992. She is the author of seven books, including Rin Tin Tin, Saturday Night, and The Orchid Thief, which was made into the Academy Award-winning film Adaptation. She lives with her family and her animals in upstate New York.

in conversation with Brooke Warner

Mark Nepo‘s #1 New York Times bestseller The Book of Awakening is the result of his journey of the soul, speaking of spirit and friendship, and urging readers to stay vital and in love with this life, no matter the hardships

Mark has been called “one of the finest spiritual guides of our time,” “a consummate storyteller,” and “an eloquent spiritual teacher.” His work is widely accessible and used by many and his books have been translated into more than twenty languages. A bestselling author, he has published twenty-two books and recorded fifteen audio projects. In 2015, he was given a Life-Achievement Award by AgeNation. In 2016, he was named by Watkins: Mind Body Spirit as one of the 100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People, and was also chosen as one of OWN’s SuperSoul 100, a group of inspired leaders using their gifts and voices to elevate humanity. And In 2017 Mark became a regular columnist for Spirituality & Health Magazine.

Mark’s recent work includes The Book of Soul (St. Martin’s Essentials, 2020); Drinking from the River of Light (Sounds True, 2019); More Together Than Alone (Atria, 2018) cited by Spirituality & Practice as one of the Best Spiritual Books of 2018; Things That Join the Sea and the Sky (Sounds True, 2017), a Nautilus Book Award Winner; The Way Under the Way: The Place of True Meeting (Sounds True, 2016), a Nautilus Book Award Winner; The One Life We’re Given (Atria) cited by Spirituality & Practice as one of the Best Spiritual Books of 2016; Inside the Miracle (Sounds True) selected by Spirituality & Health Magazine as one of the top ten best books of 2015; The Endless Practice (Atria) cited by Spirituality & Practice as one of the Best Spiritual Books of 2014; and Seven Thousand Ways to Listen (Atria), which won the 2012 Books for a Better Life Award.

Brooke Warner is publisher of She Writes Press, president of Warner Coaching Inc., and author of Write On, Sisters!, Green-light Your Book, What’s Your Book?, and three books on memoir. Brooke is a TEDx speaker, weekly podcaster, and the former Executive Editor of Seal Press. She writes a monthly column for Publishers Weekly.

in conversation with Ann Patchett

Louise Erdrich’s powerful novel The Night Watchman is based on the extraordinary life of her grandfather, who worked as a night watchman and carried the fight against Native dispossession from rural North Dakota all the way to Washington, D.C.

Louise is the author of fifteen novels as well as volumes of poetry, children’s books, short stories, and a memoir of early motherhood. The Round House won the National Book Award for Fiction. The Plague of Doves won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and her debut novel, Love Medicine, was the winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award. She has received the Library of Congress Prize in American Fiction, the prestigious PEN/Saul Bellow Award for Achievement in American Fiction, and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.

Louise lives in Minnesota with her daughters and is the owner of Birchbark Books, a small independent bookstore.

Ann Patchett is the of the recent The Dutch House and seven other novels. She was the editor of Best American Short Stories, 2006, and has written three books of nonfiction–Truth & Beauty, about her friendship with the writer Lucy Grealy, What Now? an expansion of her graduation address at Sarah Lawrence College, and This is the Story of a Happy Marriage, a collection of essays examining the theme of commitment. In 2019, she published her first children’s book, Lambslide, illustrated by Robin Preiss Glasser.

In November, 2011, Ann opened Parnassus Books in Nashville, Tennessee, with her business partner Karen Hayes. She has since become a spokesperson for independent booksellers. She lives in Nashville with her husband, Karl VanDevender, and their dog, Sparky.

in conversation with Liam Mayclem

Judith Martin’s Minding Miss Manners in an Era of Fake Etiquette, is a modern guide to modern manners in which Miss Manners guides you through these turbulent times with her timeless wisdom and archly acid wit.

Also known as Miss Manners, Judith has made tireless efforts to expand the understanding and exercise of etiquette which have not escaped official notice. During a White House ceremony In November, 2005, she was awarded the nation’s highest honor in the humanities, the National Humanities Medal, in recognition of her contributions to society as America’s foremost etiquette columnist and author.

Judith’s “Miss Manners” newspaper column — distributed thrice-weekly by the Universal UClick and carried in more than 200 newspapers in the United States and abroad — has chronicled the continuous rise and fall of American manners since 1978. Since 1996, she has been writing an additional “Miss Manners” column for the Microsoft Network, and she is a contributor to the Financial Times.

John Muir LawsHow to Teach Nature Journaling (co-authored by Emilie Lygren) is the first-ever comprehensive book devoted to helping educators use nature journaling as an inspiring teaching tool to engage young people with wild places. Bestselling author Amy Tan wrote the book’s foreword.

An author, artist, and educator, John is the founder of the Nature Journal Club, a community of people (on Facebook and at in-person groups all over the world) who love to explore the wonder, beauty, and mysteries of the world through the pages of their nature journals. For the last five years, Amy has been a member of that community and a devoted nature journaler. These two artists have become friends and sketching buddies, and they enjoy exploring nature together and finding new things to observe and wonder about in nature.

Amy Tan’s The Joy Luck Club remains a classic examination of the sometimes painful, often tender, and always deep connection between mothers and daughters. Her other novels are The Kitchen God’s Wife, The Hundred Secret Senses, The Bonesetter’s Daughter, Saving Fish from Drowning, and The Valley of Amazement (2013), all New York Times bestsellers. She is also the author of a memoir, The Opposite of Fate, two children’s books, The Moon Lady and Sagwa, The Chinese Siamese Cat and numerous articles for magazines, including The New YorkerHarper’s Bazaar, and National Geographic. She is also the author of the short story “Rules for Virgins” published in e-book format (Byliner Original).  Her work has been translated into 35 languages, from Spanish, French, and Finnish to Chinese, Arabic, and Hebrew. Amy’s latest book, Where the Past Begins: A Writer’s Memoir, was published in October 2017. She is at work on another novel, The Memory of Desire.

John (Jack) Muir Laws has written and illustrated several other books including The Laws Guide to Nature Drawing and Journaling (2016), The Laws Guide to Drawing Birds (2012), Sierra Birds: a Hiker’s Guide (2004), and The Laws Field Guide to the Sierra Nevada (2007). He is a regular contributor to Bay Nature magazine with his “Naturalists Notebook” column.

in conversation with Kate Hudson

Join Kate Hudson in conversation with Kate Schatz and Miriam Klein Stahl, the New York Times bestselling author and illustrator of the Rad Women book series.

The three women will discuss Kate and Miriam’s newest book, Rad American History A-Z, an illustrated history book that explores centuries of radical and transformative political, social, and cultural moments and movements in American history. They’ll touch on multiple topics including the importance of reading and learning about our nations’ lesser-known histories, engaging in honest conversation with their children about current events, and broadening our minds to create a just and sustainable future.

in conversation with Michael Shapiro

Tim Cahill is the author of nine books–one of which, Jaguars Ripped My Flesh, National Geographic named as one of the 100 best adventure/travel books ever written.

Tim is a pioneer of literary adventure writing. One of the founders of Outside, he is the author of its long-running “Out There” column, and an editor-at-large. His work also appears in National Geographic Adventure, the New York Times Book Review, and other national publications.

Tim’s travel books include, A Wolverine Is Eating My Leg, and Pass the Butterworms, Road Fever and Hold the Enlightenment. He also wrote the introduction for The Best Travel Writing, Volume 9: True Stories from Around the World. He is also the co-author of four IMAX documentary screenplays, two of which were nominated for Academy Awards. He lives in Montana, in the shadow of the Crazy Mountains.

Michael Shapiro writes about travel, food, entertainment, art, and environmental issues for magazines and newspapersHe is the author of The Creative Spark, a collection of interviews with many of the world’s most creative people, as well as A Sense of Place featuring conversations with leading travel writers.

in conversation with Elaine Petrocelli

Ann Patchett‘s The Dutch House explores the bond between two siblings, the house of their childhood, and a past that will not let them go. It’s a story of a paradise lost–one that digs deeply into questions of inheritance, love and forgiveness, of how we want to see ourselves and of who we really are.

Ann is the author of seven novels, The Patron Saint of LiarsTaftThe Magician’s AssistantBel CantoRunState of Wonder, and Commonwealth. She was the editor of Best American Short Stories, 2006, and has written three books of nonfiction–Truth & Beauty, about her friendship with the writer Lucy Grealy, What Now? an expansion of her graduation address at Sarah Lawrence College, and This is the Story of a Happy Marriage, a collection of essays examining the theme of commitment. In 2019, she published her first children’s book, Lambslide, illustrated by Robin Preiss Glasser.

In November, 2011, Ann opened Parnassus Books in Nashville, Tennessee, with her business partner Karen Hayes. She lives in Nashville with her husband, Karl VanDevender, and their dog, Sparky.

in conversation with Mark Nieker

Dominique Crenn‘s Rebel Chef: In Search of What Matters is an honest, revealing look at one woman’s evolution from a daring young chef to a respected activist–all as she makes a place for herself in the kitchen, and in the world.

Dominique began her formal kitchen training in San Francisco in 1988. In 1997, she made culinary history as the first female executive chef in Indonesia, heading the kitchen at the InterContinental Hotel in Jakarta. She returned to California in 1998 as executive chef of Manhattan Country Club in Manhattan Beach. She then opened Abode in Santa Monica, but it was Luce that brought her back to San Francisco and where she earned her first Michelin star in 2009.

Atelier Crenn debuted in January 2011, quickly earning its first Michelin star and a second by October 2012. Dominique is the first female chef in the United States to receive a second coveted star and has maintained the distinction through 2018. She was named “Best Female Chef” in 2016 by World’s 50 Best.Fashioned after the food of her childhood in Brittany, she opened Petit Crenn in 2015, followed by Bar Crenn in 2018.

in conversation with Elaine Petrocelli

Dr. Jill Biden‘s Where the Light Enters is a candid, heartwarming glimpse into the creation of a beloved American family, and the life of the woman at its center.

Jill, the wife of former vice president Joe Biden is the New York Times bestselling author of Where the Light Enters and her first children’s book, Don’t Forget, God Bless Our Troops.

She works as a community college professor. She served as second lady of the United States from 2009 to 2017. During the Obama-Biden administration, she advocated for military families, community colleges, the fight against cancer, and the education of women and girls around the world. Dr. Biden and her husband founded the Biden Foundation and the Biden Cancer Initiative.

Her forthcoming release, Joey, is the first ever picture book about the young life of Joe Biden, the 47th Vice President of the United States, and includes never before told family stories about the presidential candidate and former vice president’s childhood.

Jill mother of three and grandmother of five, she and her husband live in Wilmington, Delaware, with their two dogs, Champ and Major.

Elaine Petrocelli is co-owner of Book Passage, the fiercely independent bookstore in Corte Madera, California, and at the San Francisco Ferry Building . Over the past 44 years, Book Passage has hosted more than 10,000 classes, conferences, and author events, featuring Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Salman Rushdie, John McCain, Al Gore, Jimmy Carter, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi and thousands of new writers. She hosts of the Conversations with Authors series with Isabel Allende, Khaled Hosseini, Anne Lamott, Dave Eggers and other great writers.

in conversation with Jacqueline Winspear

Elizabeth George’s Mastering the Process: From Idea to Novel offers readers a master class in the art and science of crafting a novel––a subject she knows well, having taught creative writing both nationally and internationally for over thirty years.

Elizabeth’s crime novels have been celebrated by the New York Times and translated into 30 languages and featured on television by the BBC. She is also the author of a young adult series set on the island where she lives in the state of Washington.

A longtime instructor of creative writing, she has taught at colleges, universities, writers’ retreats, and conferences internationally. She most recently taught a live online creative writing class for Hedgebrook Women’s Writers’ Retreat on Whidbey Island. She is the recipient of the Anthony Award, the Agatha Award, France’s Grand Prix di Literatture Policiere, and Germany’s MIMI. She has twice been nominated for an Edgar Award, and she is the recipient of an honorary doctorate of humane letters from California State University Fullerton, and an honorary MFA from Northwest Institute of Language Arts (Whidbey Island MFA Program).

She has also written the longtime best selling creative writing book Write Away, has edited two volumes of short stories, and is the executive chair of the Elizabeth George Foundation, which makes grants to poets, emerging playwrights, and unpublished novelists.

Jason Rosenthal’s My Wife Said You May Want to Marry Me is an inspiring memoir of life, love, loss, and new beginnings by the widower of bestselling children’s author and filmmaker Amy Krouse Rosenthal, whose last of act of love before her death was setting the stage for her husband’s life without her in the viral New York Times Modern Love column, “You May Want to Marry My Husband.”

Jason and Paris are co-authors of the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dear Boy, the #1 New York Times bestselling follow-up picture book to the #1 New York Times bestseller Dear Girl, co-written by Paris and her mother Amy Krouse Rosenthal.

Jason is also the board chair of the Amy Krouse Rosenthal Foundation, which supports childhood literacy and research in early detection of ovarian cancer. A lawyer, public speaker, and devoted father of three, he is passionate about helping others find ways to fill their blank space as he continues to fill his own. Jason resides in Chicago, a city he is proud to call home.

in conversation with Anne Lamott

Janine Urbaniak Reid’s The Opposite of Certainty is the story of her reluctant journey beyond easy answers and platitudes. Drawn deeply and against her will into herself, and into the eternal questions we all ask, she discovers hidden reserves of strength, humor, and a no-matter-what faith that looks nothing like she thought it would.

Janine writes about her imperfect life, what connects us, and addresses the question of what it means to love fiercely in a sometimes dangerous and always uncertain world.

Anne Lamott is the author of seven novels, Hard Laughter, Rosie, Joe Jones, Blue Shoe, All New People, Crooked Little Heart, and Imperfect Birds. She has also written several bestselling books of nonfiction, including, Operating Instructions, an account of life as a single mother during her son’s first year; Some Assembly Required: A Journal of My Son’s First Son; and the classic book on writing; Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life.

Police Brutality and the Movement for Change

a panel discussion moderated by Paula Farmer

 

Dani McClain reports on race and reproductive health. She is a contributing writer at The Nation and a fellow with Type Media Center. In 2018, she received a James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism. Brian Copeland is an award-winning actor, comedian, author, playwright, television and radio talk show host based in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2004, he debuted his first one-man play, NotGenuine Black Man at the Marsh in San Francisco. His best-selling book based on Genuine is required reading in several high schools and colleges across the country. Aya de Leon is an author and activist based in Berkeley. She directs the Poetry for the People program, teaching creative writing at UC Berkeley. Since 2013, she has been blogging on race, class, gender, culture, and social justice politics.

Moderator Paula Farmer curates special panel events focusing on discussions about topical social issues, like “Race in America” and “Immigration in America.” She is Chairwoman of the Diversity & Inclusion Committee for California Independent Booksellers Association (CALIBA). Her background is in journalism.

in conversation with Paula Farmer

Julie Lythcott-Haims is the author of the anti-helicopter parenting manifesto How to Raise an Adult as well as the critically-acclaimed and prose poetry memoir Real American, which illustrates her experience with racism and her journey toward self-acceptance.

Julie believes in humans and is deeply interested in what gets in our way. Her TED Talk on the raising children was one of the top talks of 2016, and in 2020 she became a regular correspondent with CBS This Morning on parenting. Her second book, Real American, illustrates her experience with racism and her journey toward self-acceptance.

She wrote the foreword for Writing Memoir, a book of writing prompts developed by Julie and her colleagues at the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto for those hungry to share their lived experiences. A fourth book, It’s Your Turn: The Real How-to on Adulting, will be out in April 2021.

in conversation with Helene Cooper

Jennifer Steinhauer’s latest work, The Firsts, breathtakingly chronicles the first-year experiences of the history-making women who entered Congress in November 2018, detailing their transition from running trailblazing campaigns to the daily work of governance.

Jennifer went to work for The New York Times as a news clerk when she was still a journalism student at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. She has covered health care and business in New York, was City Hall bureau chief, Los Angeles bureau chief, congressional correspondent, Mid-Atlantic correspondent and veterans reporter.

Teaming with co-author and friend Jessica Hendra, Jennifer capped her years in Los Angeles with a satirical novel Beverly Hills Adjacent, at times hilarious, at times touching, that sends up the television industry and the ways of those in and near the entertainment industry.

One of the earliest writers for Food52, Jennifer has been writing about food, sharing her recipes and entertaining her public for years. Her first cookbook, Treat Yourself, taught us how to make our own junk food, at home. She then teamed with friend and colleague Frank Bruni to extol the power and diversity of the lowly meat loaf, in A Meat Loaf in Every Oven.

Helene Cooper is a Pentagon correspondent with The New York Times. She joined the paper in 2004 as assistant editorial page editor, before becoming diplomatic correspondent in 2006 and White House correspondent in 2009.

in conversation with Bill Petrocelli

Michael Connelly‘s new release, Fair Warning, returns readers to the world of Jack McEvoy, the journalist who never backs down, as he tracks a serial killer who has been operating completely under the radar–until now.

Michael is the bestselling author of over thirty novels and one work of nonfiction. With over seventy-four million copies of his books sold worldwide and translated into forty foreign languages, he is one of the most successful writers working today.

A former newspaper reporter who worked the crime beat at the Los Angeles Times and the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, Michael has won numerous awards for his journalism and his fiction. His very first novel, The Black Echo, won the prestigious Mystery Writers of America Edgar Award for Best First Novel in 1992. In 2002, Clint Eastwood directed and starred in the movie adaptation of Connelly’s 1998 novel, Blood Work. In March 2011, the movie adaptation of his #1 bestselling novel, The Lincoln Lawyer, hit theaters worldwide starring Matthew McConaughey as Mickey Haller. His most recent #1 New York Times bestsellers include Dark Sacred Night, The Late Show, Two Kinds Of Truth, The Late Show, The Wrong Side Of Goodbye, The Crossing, The Burning Room, The Gods of Guilt, The Black Box, and The Drop.

Michael is the executive producer of Bosch, an Amazon Studios original drama series based on his bestselling character Harry Bosch, starring Titus Welliver and streaming on Amazon Prime. He is also the executive producer of the documentary films, Sound of Redemption: The Frank Morgan Story and Tales Of the American. He spends his time in California and Florida.

Bill Petrocelli is co-owner of Book Passage and author of the novels The Circle of Thirteen and Through the Bookstore Window. He is also the author of the soon-to-be-published Electoral Bait & Switch: How the Electoral College Hurts American Voters.

in conversation with R.O. Kwon

Téa Obreht’s new novel, Inland: A Novel, is an imaginatively mythic journey across the American West that was named one of the best books of the 2019 by publications including Time, The Washington Post, Entertainment Weekly, Esquire, Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal  and BookPage.

Téa is also the author of The Tiger’s Wife, a finalist for the National Book Award and winner of the 2011 Orange Prize for Fiction. An international bestseller, it has sold over a million copies worldwide, with rights sold in 37 countries.

Téa was a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 honoree and was named by The New Yorker as one of the twenty best American fiction writers under forty. She was the 2013 Rona Jaffe Foundation fellow at the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers and was a recipient of the 2016 National Endowment for the Arts fellowship.

She was born in Belgrade, in the former Yugoslavia, in 1985 and has lived in the United States since the age of twelve. She currently lives in New York City and teaches at Hunter College.

R.O. Kwon’s nationally bestselling first novel, The Incendiaries, is being translated into seven languages. Named a best book of the year by over forty publications, The Incendiaries received the Housatonic Book Award and was a finalist or nominated for seven other prizes, including the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Award for Best First Book and Los Angeles Times First Book Prize. Kwon’s next novel, as well as an essay collection, are forthcoming.

R.O’s writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Paris Review, NPR, and elsewhere. She has received fellowships and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, Yaddo, MacDowell, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Born in Seoul, Kwon has lived most of her life in the United States.

in conversation with Alison Gopnik

Jane Hirshfield‘s recently released collection, Ledger: Poems has been hailed as the most important and masterly work of her career.

Jane, one of our most celebrated contemporary poets. is the author of nine collections of poetry, including the newly released Ledger; The Beauty, long-listed for the National Book Award and a San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of 2015; Come, Thief; After, named a Best Book of 2006 by The Washington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, and the Financial Times, and a finalist for England’s prestigious T.S. Eliot Prize; Given Sugar, Given Salt finalist for the 2001 National Book Critics Circle Award, and winner of the Bay Area Book Reviewers Award; The Lives of the Heart; The October Palace; Of Gravity & Angels, winner of the Poetry Center Book Award; and Alaya.

Alison Gopnik is a professor of psychology and affiliate professor of philosophy at the University of California at Berkeley, where she has taught since 1988. She received her BA from McGill University and her PhD from Oxford University. She is a world leader in cognitive science, particularly the study of children’s learning and development.

She is the author of over 100 articles and several books including Words, Thoughts and Theories (coauthored with Andrew Meltzoff), The Scientist in the Crib (coauthored with Andrew Meltzoff and Patricia Kuhl),  and The Philosophical Baby; What children’s minds tell us about love, truth and the meaning of life. She has also written for Science, The Times Literary Supplement, The New York Review of Books, The New York Times, New Scientist, and Slate.

in conversation with Elaine Petrocelli

John Grisham is the #1 New York Times bestselling author whose latest release, Camino Winds, brings readers back to paradise for a little sun, sand, mystery, and mayhem.

Since first publishing A Time to Kill in 1988, John has written one novel a year and all of them have become international bestsellers. There are currently over 300 million John Grisham books in print worldwide, which have been translated into 40 languages. Nine of his novels have been turned into films (The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, A Time to Kill, The Rainmaker, The Chamber, A Painted House, The Runaway Jury, and Skipping Christmas), as was an original screenplay, The Gingerbread Man.

The Innocent Man (October 2006) marked his first foray into non-fiction, and Ford County (November 2009) was his first short story collection.

Elaine Petrocelli is co-owner of Book Passage, the fiercely independent bookstore in Corte Madera, California, and at the San Francisco Ferry Building . Over the past 44 years, Book Passage has hosted more than 10,000 classes, conferences, and author events, featuring Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Salman Rushdie, John McCain, Al Gore, Jimmy Carter, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi and thousands of new writers. She hosts of the Conversations with Authors series with Isabel Allende, Khaled Hosseini, Anne Lamott, Dave Eggers and other great writers.

in conversation with Phil Cousineau

Joan Ryan‘s fascinating new Intangibles: Unlocking the Science and Soul of Team Chemistry explores how team chemistry—that perfect combination of biological and social forces that boosts selfless effort—drives sports teams toward a common goal, encourages players to be the best versions of themselves, and pushes individuals to exceed their own potential as they work together.

Joan is an award-winning journalist and author. She was one of the first female sports columnists in the country, and has covered every major sporting event, from the Super Bowl to the Olympics and championship fights. Her work has earned her thirteen Associated Press Sports Editors Awards, the National Headliner Award and the Women’s Sports Foundation’s Journalism Award by the San Francisco chapter of the National Organization for Women. Her book Little Girls in Pretty Boxes: The Making and Breaking of Elite Gymnasts and Figure Skaters was named one of the Top 100 Sports Books of All Time by Sports Illustrated (the only one to be authored by a woman), and one of the Top 50 Sports Books of All Time by the Guardian. Joan now works as a media consultant to the San Francisco Giants.

in conversation with Jaquira Diaz

Julia Alvarez‘s stunning new novel, Afterlife, is set in the current political moment of tribalism and distrust, and asks: What do we owe those in crisis in our families, including—maybe especially—members of our human family? How do we live in a broken world without losing faith in one another or ourselves? And how do we stay true to those glorious souls we have lost?

Julia left the Dominican Republic for the United States in 1960 at the age of ten. She is the author of six novels, three books of nonfiction, three collections of poetry, and eleven books for children and young adults. She has taught and mentored writers in schools and communities across America and, until her retirement in 2016, was a writer-in-residence at Middlebury College. Her work has garnered wide recognition, including a Latina Leader Award in Literature from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, the Hispanic Heritage Award in Literature, the Woman of the Year by Latina magazine, and inclusion in the New York Public Library’s program “The Hand of the Poet: Original Manuscripts by 100 Masters, from John Donne to Julia Alvarez.” In the Time of the Butterflies, with over one million copies in print, was selected by the National Endowment for the Arts for its national Big Read program, and in 2013 President Obama awarded Alvarez the National Medal of Arts in recognition of her extraordinary storytelling.
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in conversation with Matt Nathanson

Kelly Corrigan‘s Tell Me More: Stories About the 12 Hardest Things I’m Learning to Say is a wonderfully personal, honest, and hilarious examination of the essential phrases that make love and connection possible.

Kelly has been called “the voice of her generation” by O: The Oprah Magazine and “the poet laureate of the ordinary” by HuffPost. She is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Middle Place, Lift, and Glitter and Glue. She is also the creative director of The Nantucket Project and host of their conversation series about what matters most. She lives near Oakland, California, with her husband, Edward Lichty, and her daughters, Georgia and Claire.

Matt Nathanson has evolved into one of the most applauded songwriters and engaging performers on the music scene today. His 2007 album, Some Mad Hope, yielded his breakthrough multi-platinum hit “Come on Get Higher.” His 2013 release, Last of The Great Pretenders, debuted at #16 on the Billboard Top 200 while hitting #1 on iTunes’ Alternative Albums chart. Nathanson has performed on The Howard Stern Show, Ellen, CONAN, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Dancing with the Stars, Rachael Ray, and The CMA Awards to name a few.

His most recent album, Sings His Sad Heart spawned the hit single “Used To Be” which was a chart climber – hitting top 15 at Hot AC and is streaming a million streams a month.

Lori Gottlieb’s new Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, HER Therapist, and Our Lives Revealed invites us into Lori’s world as both clinician and patient, examining the truths and fictions we tell ourselves and others as we teeter on the tightrope between love and desire, meaning and mortality, guilt and redemption, terror and courage, hope and change. Rick Hanson’s latest, the ground-breaking Neurodharma, explores the new neuroscience of awakening and offers a bold, plausible plan for reverse-engineering peak experiences, sense of oneness, and even enlightenment itself.

Lori Gottlieb is a psychotherapist and author of the New York Times bestseller Maybe You Should Talk to Someone, which is being adapted as a television series by Eva Longoria and the creators of Emmy and Golden Globe-winning series “The Americans.” In addition to her clinical practice, she writes The Atlantic’s weekly “Dear Therapist” advice column and contributes regularly to The New York Times and many other publications. Her recent TED Talk is one of the top 10 most watched of the year, and she is a sought-after expert in media such as The Today Show, Good Morning America, The CBS Early Show, CNN, and NPR’s “Fresh Air.” Her new iHeart Radio podcast, “Dear Therapists,” produced by Katie Couric, will premiere this year. Learn more at LoriGottlieb.com.

Rick Hanson, PhD is a psychologist, Senior Fellow of UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, and New York Times best-selling author. His books have been published in 29 languages and include Neurodharma, Resilient, Hardwiring Happiness, Buddha’s Brain, Just One Thing, and Mother Nurture – with 900,000 copies in English alone.

in conversation with Isabel Allende

Adam Hochschild‘s Rebel Cinderella: From Rags to Riches to Radical tells the astonishing but forgotten story of an immigrant sweatshop worker who married an heir to a great American fortune and became one of the most charismatic radical leaders of her time.

He is the author of ten books. King Leopold’s Ghost was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, as was To End All Wars. His Bury the Chains was a finalist for the National Book Award and won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and PEN USA Literary Award. He lives in Berkeley, California.

Isabel Allende—novelist, feminist, and philanthropist—is one of the most widely-read authors in the world, having sold more than 74 million books. In addition to her work as a writer, Allende devotes much of her time to human rights causes. In 1996, following the death of her daughter Paula, she established a charitable foundation in her honor, which has awarded grants to more than 100 nonprofits worldwide, delivering life-changing care to hundreds of thousands of women and girls. More than 8 million have watched her TED Talks on leading a passionate life.

in conversation with Jennifer Barth

Jacqueline Winspear‘s The American Agent was published in 2019, as was What Would Maisie Do? – a non-fiction book based on her acclaimed Masie Dobbs series.

Jacqueline is the creator of the award-winning New York Times and National Bestselling series featuring psychologist and investigator, Maisie Dobbs. Jacqueline’s “standalone” novel set in WW1, The Care and Management of Lies, was a finalist for the 2015 Dayton Literary Peace Prize. Her memoir, This Time Next Year We’ll Be Laughing, will be published in November. Originally from the UK, Jacqueline now lives in northern California.

in conversation with Michael Krasny

Erik Larson is the author of six New York Times bestsellers, including Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania, which hit no. 1 on the Times list soon after launch, and his newest book, The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz. The latter is in large part a domestic drama that examines how Winston Churchill and his “Secret Circle” really went about surviving the German air campaign of 1940-41. Erik’s The Devil in the White City is set to be a Hulu limited series; his In the Garden of Beasts is under option by Tom Hanks, for a feature film. Erik lives in Manhattan with his wife, who is a writer and retired neonatologist; they have three grown daughters.

in conversation with Kathryn Belden

Lisa See’s new novel, The Island of Sea Women, is about the free-diving women of South Korea’s Jeju Island. Lisa is also the New York Times bestselling author of The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Peony in Love, Shanghai Girls, China Dolls, and Dreams of Joy, which debuted at #1. She is also the author of On Gold Mountain, which tells the story of her Chinese American family’s settlement in Los Angeles. Lisa has also written a mystery series that takes place in China. Her books have been published in 39 languages.

in conversation with Yeganeh Rezaian

Jason Rezaian served as Tehran bureau chief for the Washington Post and is now an opinion writer for the paper and contributor to CNN. He was convicted—but never sentenced—of espionage in a closed-door trial in Iran in 2015. He lives in Washington, DC, with his wife. His book Prisoner: My 544 Days in an Iranian Prison, published in January 2019, details his experience in captivity in Iran.

in conversation with Dave Eggers

Colum McCann is the author of seven novels and three collections of stories. Born and raised in Dublin, Ireland, he has been the recipient of many international honors, including the National Book Award, the International Dublin Impac Prize, a Chevalier des Arts et Lettres from the French government, election to the Irish arts academy, several European awards, the 2010 Best Foreign Novel Award in China, and an Oscar nomination. In 2017 he was elected to the American Academy of Arts. His work has been published in over 40 languages. He is the co-founder of the non-profit global story exchange organization, Narrative 4, and he teaches at the MFA program in Hunter College. He lives in New York with his wife, Allison, and their family.

in conversation with Elaine Petrocelli

Khaled Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, and moved to the United States in 1980. He is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, and And the Mountains Echoed. Hosseini is also a U.S. Goodwill Envoy to the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and the founder of The Khaled Hosseini Foundation, a nonprofit that provides humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan.

Elaine Petrocelli is co-owner of Book Passage, the fiercely independent bookstore in Corte Madera, California, and at the San Francisco Ferry Building . Over the past 44 years, Book Passage has hosted more than 10,000 classes, conferences, and author events, featuring Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Salman Rushdie, John McCain, Al Gore, Jimmy Carter, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi and thousands of new writers. She hosts of the Conversations with Authors series with Isabel Allende, Khaled Hosseini, Anne Lamott, Dave Eggers and other great writers.

in conversation with Tom Barbash

Dave Eggers is the author of many books, including The Circle, The Monk of Mokha, What is the What, A Hologram for the King, and The Lifters. He is founder of McSweeney’s, an independent publishing company based in San Francisco that produces books, a humor website, and a journal of new writing, McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern. McSweeney’s also publishes Voice of Witness, a nonprofit book series that uses oral history to illuminate human rights crises around the world. He is the co-founder of 826 National, a network of youth writing and tutoring centers around the United States.

in conversation with Sam Lamott

Anne Lamott is the author of seven novels, Hard Laughter, Rosie, Joe Jones, Blue Shoe, All New People, Crooked Little Heart, and Imperfect Birds. She has also written several bestselling books of nonfiction, including, Operating Instructions, an account of life as a single mother during her son’s first year; Some Assembly Required: A Journal of My Son’s First Son; and the classic book on writing; Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life.

in conversation with Don George

Isabel Allende—novelist, feminist, and philanthropist—is one of the most widely-read authors in the world, having sold more than 74 million books. In addition to her work as a writer, Allende devotes much of her time to human rights causes. In 1996, following the death of her daughter Paula, she established a charitable foundation in her honor, which has awarded grants to more than 100 nonprofits worldwide, delivering life-changing care to hundreds of thousands of women and girls. More than 8 million have watched her TED Talks on leading a passionate life.

in conversation with Juliet Grames

Cara Black is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 19 books in the Private Investigator Aimée Leduc series, which is set in Paris. Cara has received multiple nominations for the Anthony and Macavity Awards, a Washington Post Book World Book of the Year citation, the Médaille de la Ville de Paris—the Paris City Medal, which is awarded in recognition of contribution to international culture—and invitations to be the Guest of Honor at conferences such as the Paris Polar Crime Festival and Left Coast Crime. With more than 400,000 books in print, the Aimée Leduc series has been translated into German, Norwegian, Japanese, French, Spanish, Italian, and Hebrew.