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Babylon Salon: Daniel Handler, Jenny Odell, Namwali Serpell, Nancy Au, Jason Sheeler: Fall
September 14, 2019 @ 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
presents our Fall Reading
(Bottle Grove; A Series of Unfortunate Events)
“Set in San Francisco during the Big Bang of tech, Bottle Grove sees two marriages form and mutate under the influence of greed, secrets, and income inequality. With this dark, timely comedy, Handler continues to prove himself a writer of prodigious gifts.” – Esquire, “Most Anticipated Books of the Year”
“Oh lucky you to have Bottle Grove in your hands! What a funny, riveting, heartbreaking, wise and joyous read you have ahead of you! A masterpiece by Daniel Handler, one of our greatest storytellers. How I envy you.” – Andrew Sean Greer, author of LESS, Winner of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize
Daniel Handler is the author of seven novels, including Bottle Grove, which is forthcoming in August 2019. As Lemony Snicket, he is responsible for numerous books for children, including Swarm of Bees, illustrated by Rilla Alexander. His books have sold more than 70 million copies and have been translated into 40 languages, and have been adapted for screen and stage. The first season of Netflix“s adaptation ofA Series of Unfortunate Events, for which he served as Executive Producer and Writer, won a 2018 Peabody Award for its “lively excellence, strange silliness, and compelling storytelling,” and the teleplay won a 2019 Writers Guild Award. He lives in San Francisco with the illustrator Lisa Brown, to whom he is married and with whom he has collaborated on several books, and one son.
(How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy)
“Odell struck a hopeful nerve of possibility that I hadn’t felt in a long time.”—Jia Tolentino, THE NEW YORKER
“How to Do Nothing is a complex, smart and ambitious book that at first reads like a self-help manual, then blossoms into a wide-ranging political manifesto.”—Jonah Engel Bromwich, THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW
“Your chaotic, fraught internal weather isn’t an accident, it’s a business-model, and while ‘thoughtful resistance’ isn’t ‘productive,’ Odell proves that it is utterly necessary.”—Cory Doctorow, author of Radicalized and Walkaway
Jenny Odell is an artist and writer who teaches at Stanford, has been an artist-in-residence at places like the San Francisco dump, Facebook, the Internet Archive, and the San Francisco Planning Department, and has exhibited her art all over the world. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, SFMOMA’s Open Space, McSweeney’s, The Creative Independent, Sierra Magazine, Topic, and Real Future. Her book, How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy, was recently published by Melville House. She lives in Oakland.
(The Old Drift)
“Extraordinary, ambitious, evocative…. A dazzling debut, establishing Namwali Serpell as a writer on the world stage.” Salman Rushdie, The New York Times Book Review (cover)
“This is a dazzling book, as ambitious as any first novel published this decade. It made the skin on the back of my neck prickle….” Dwight Garner, The New York Times
Namwali Serpell is a Zambian writer who teaches at the University of California, Berkeley. She won the 2015 Caine Prize for African Writing. She received a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award for women writers in 2011 and was selected for the Africa39, a 2014 Hay Festival project to identify the best African writers under 40. The Old Drift is her first novel and has been long listed for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize and the Historical Writers’ Association Debut Crown.
“These stories sparkle with life and secrets, joy and power, pain and hilarity and sharp insights into the human heart. Nancy Au is a rare and blazing talent, and this debut collection is a house of wonders, thrilling and unforgettable.” Carolina De Robertis, author of Cantoras
“An original and delightfully off-kilter debut collection about searching for a sense of belonging. . . . Only a writer who knows how closely bound are heartbreak and resilience could write stories as emotionally stirring as these.” *starred review*, Kirkus Review
Nancy Au‘s essays and stories appear in many journals, including Redivider, Gulf Coast, Lunch Ticket, and Michigan Quarterly Review. She teaches creative writing (to biology majors!) at California State University Stanislaus, and in the Fall will begin teaching at San Francisco State University. She is co-founder of The Escapery, a writing and art unschool. Her flash fiction is included in the Best Small Fictions 2018 anthology, and in The Vestal Review as the winner of their 2018 VERA Flash Fiction Prize. Her flash also won Redivider‘s 2018 Blurred Genre Contest. Her debut full-length collection is Spider Love Song & Other Stories.
Jason Sheeler is a writer newly based in San Francisco. Formerly the style director for Departures magazine, editor-at-large at Entertainment Weekly, senior editor at Glamour, and contributing writer at Texas Monthly, he has done recent work for The Hollywood Reporter,Bloomberg Businessweek, Travel + Leisure, and Condé Nast Traveler.
Check out our partner Podcast: www.grottopod.com
Cash Bar Exotica
Doors at 5.30,
Reading at 6.00
1799 Mission St., San Francisco
across from the San Francisco Armory