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Helen Phillips with Sarah Rich / The Need

July 15, 2019 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm PDT

The Bindery hosts Helen Phillips for her new novel The Need. She’ll be in conversation with Sarah Rich. Please join us!

When Molly, home alone with her two young children, hears footsteps in the living room, she tries to convince herself it’s the sleep deprivation. She’s been hearing things these days. Startling at loud noises. Imagining the worst-case scenario. It’s what mothers do, she knows.

But then the footsteps come again, and she catches a glimpse of movement.

Suddenly Molly finds herself face-to-face with an intruder who knows far too much about her and her family. As she attempts to protect those she loves most, Molly must also acknowledge her own frailty. Molly slips down an existential rabbit hole where she must confront the dualities of motherhood: the ecstasy and the dread; the languor and the ferocity; the banality and the transcendence as the book hurtles toward a mind-bending conclusion.

In The Need, Helen Phillips has created a subversive, speculative thriller that comes to life through blazing, arresting prose and gorgeous, haunting imagery. Anointed as one of the most exciting fiction writers working today, The Need is a glorious celebration of the bizarre and beautiful nature of our everyday lives.

Helen Phillips is the author of, most recently, the novel The Need. Her collection Some Possible Solutions received the 2017 John Gardner Fiction Book Award. Her novel The Beautiful Bureaucrat, a New York Times Notable Book of 2015, was a finalist for the Los Angeles TimesBook Prize and the NYPL Young Lions Award. Her collection And Yet They Were Happy was named a notable collection by The Story Prize. She is also the author of the middle-grade novel Here Where the Sunbeams Are Green. Helen has received a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award and the Italo Calvino Prize in Fabulist Fiction, and her work has appeared in The AtlanticThe New York Times, and Tin House, and on Selected Shorts. She is an associate professor at Brooklyn College and lives in Brooklyn with her husband, artist Adam Douglas Thompson, and their children. Visit HelenCPhillips.com. Author photo by David Barry.

Sarah Rich is the Global Editorial Director at IDEO. She co-edited the book Leave Me Alone With the Recipes: The Life, Art and Cookbook of Cipe Pineles (Bloomsbury, 2017), which tells the life story of the legendary yet unsung designer Cipe Pineles, alongside her original paintings and recipes. Sarah was formerly a senior editor at Dwell and managing editor of Worldchanging, where she co-authored the bestselling book, Worldchanging: A User’s Guide for the 21st Century (Abrams, 2006), a celebrated book about sustainability and social change. She is also the founding managing editor of Inhabitat; co-founder of the Knight-Batten Award-winning Longshot Magazine and the Foodprint Project; and created and edited Medium’s design criticism publication, re:form. Sarah received her BA from Stanford University in Cultural and Social Anthropology and began her career in the world of food. She worked as a food justice community advocate, a television production assistant for the Food Network, and a chef at the Berkeley Art Museum café. She is a founding editor of James Beard Award-winning Civil Eats, and author of the book Urban Farms(Abrams, 2011). Sarah’s work has been published in Wired, The Atlantic, AFAR, Gourmet, BusinessWeek, Details, the Globe & Mail, Huffington Post, Creative Review and elsewhere. She has lectured in Brazil, India, the United Arab Emirates, and throughout North America, and has been a new media and sustainability expert commentator on NPR, BBC World Service, and Current TV. She serves on the board of directors for Project H and Girls Garage, a non-profit design/build program for girls ages 9-13. She lives with her husband, son, and daughter in Oakland, California.

Please note: this event will be held at The Bindery, 1727 Haight.

This is an all ages event. The bar opens at 7pm; event starts at 7:30pm.

As with all of our events, seating may be limited; you can guarantee a seat by pre-purchasing the book below — when checking out, just be sure to include a note that you’d like to attend the event. If you cannot attend the event but would like to request a signed copy of The Need, order below and put your request in the comments field; to order a signed copy of any of Helen’s other books, order here and be sure to include your request in the comments field; for Sarah’s book, here.

RSVP appreciated but not required.


July 15, 2019
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm PDT
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The Bindery
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The Bindery
1727 Haight St
San Francisco , 94117 United States
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