Check out some of the authors who will be at the 2018 Festival. Who do YOU want to see?
Keynotes! Saturday night with Robert Reich on The Common Good… Sunday night with Pico Iyer with an address on how literature and travel overcome divisions to create understanding.
Elaborating on how we can create a better society are CNN commentator Sally Kohn with The Opposite of Hate… Nadine Strossen(former president of the ACLU) launching a new book on free speech… Michael Kimmel (Angry White Men), a leading writer on masculinity, on Healing from Hate about young men and extremism… and Khaled Beydoun with American Islamophobia about overcoming fear.
Enjoy a plethora of other interviews on art, literature, politics, and activism! Hear Pulitzer Prize winner Viet Thanh Nguyen… Rebecca Solnit… and Kenyan writer Ngugi wa Thiong’o (often mentioned for the Nobel in Literature) with his prison memoir.
Who says food isn’t political? See Alice Waters with her new memoir in conversation with the Chronicle’s food writer Jonathan Kauffman with a book of his own: Hippie Food… plus, Laura Lively with The Berkeley Bowl Cookbook!
Lucy Kalanithi, widow of the late neurosurgeon author Paul Kalanithi, was promoting Paul’s gorgeous, bestselling book When Breath Becomes Air and blurbed a similar book by Nina Riggs,The Bright Hour, also about facing death from cancer. When Nina died, Lucy helped Nina’s husband, John Duberstein, through the worst of it. Can you tell where this is going? Lucy and John fell love. This Washington Post story tells the tale. They’ll appear together at the festival to discuss love, loss, and the meaning of life.
With the launch of the festival’s Women Lit society, #metoo and more, we have an especially strong slate of female writers and topics relevant to women. Geneen Roth (Women Food and God) appears with a new memoir about midlife. Magdalena Yesil, first investor in Salesforce and a tech entrepreneur, advises us with Power Up: How Smart Women Win in the New Economy. Belva Davis and others show us how All the Women in My Family Sing. Post-punk musician Viv Albertine comes to us from the UK to talk about her new memoir (in conversation with legendary rock critic Greil Marcus).
Also from the UK comes Winnie Li, author of the “Not the Booker Prize” winning novel Dark Chapter on sexual assault… Also on the topic: Renowned Irish novelist Eimear McBride, whose Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing broke literary ground in telling a story of sexual assault… T. Christian Miller, whose reporting behind A False Report: A True Story of Rape in America won the Pulitzer Prize… Peggy Orenstein of Girls and Sex, with a book about boys underway.
Catch novelist and fearless memoirist Lidia Yuknavitch with The Misfit’s Manifesto and The Book of Joan, part of a session “Women & Speculative Fiction: Following the Footsteps of Atwood, Butler, and Le Guin.” And don’t miss bestsellers Catherine Coulter and Joyce Maynard.
An absolute must-see: Dr. Edith Eger, 92-year-old Auschwitz survivor and trauma psychologist with one of the most compelling books we’ve read this year, The Choice: Embrace the Possible. Also on the spiritual/psychology front are Zen Roshi Joan Halifax with Standing at the Edge: Finding Freedom Where Fear and Courage Meet and Zen hospice founder Frank Ostaseski with The Five Invitations on how to live meaningfully in the face of death (the greatest teacher).
Other highlights: Legendary poet Gary Snyder with Kim Stanley Robinson on naming Mt. Thoreau… a session on immigration with Francisco Cantú (The Line Becomes a River), Lauren Markham (The Far Away Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life), and Hernan Diaz… two-time Pulitzer Prize winner T. J. Stiles… Michael Imperioli (from The Sopranos) with a novel… Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Errol Morris in conversation with Edward Frenkel about Morris’s new book on truth and reality….
If all this makes you want to write, come hear Grant Faulkner, executive director of the hugely popular NaNoWriMo, with Pep Talks for Writers. Get truly behind the scenes of book reviewing with a star-studded reviewing panel with Paul Laity of The Guardian, Jane Ciabattari (board of National Book Critics Circle, reviewer for NPR and BBC), Lydia Kiesling (editor of The Millions), and more.
Don’t forget the kids! Dave Eggers debuts The Lifters for middle-graders. Middle-grade Newbery Award winner Katherine Applegate appears in an interview. Former U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera inspires middle-graders to embrace their creativity with a performance and book called Jabberwalking. For the littler ones we’ll have the ever-popular Mac Barnett and many more.
Finally, one of the most exciting areas of publishing: Young adult literature. Just drop these names to your teenagers: Melissa De La Cruz. Nina LaCour. Sabaa Tahir… and more to come.
All this barely scratches the surface! The full schedule (and the tickets link) is revealed on March 15. Sign up for our newsletter to be among the first to hear.
Over the weekend of May 4th and 5th, 2019, the Fifth Anniversary Bay Area Book Festival will fill downtown Berkeley with a literary extravaganza that offers pleasure to anyone who has ever loved a book.