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Reading Roundup: This Week's Top Literary Events

Kathleen Alcott

Kathleen Alcott

Each week, we offer a roundup of the best literary events in the city. All events are free and open to the public, unless otherwise noted. Want to submit an upcoming event for consideration? Go here.

Editor's note: In addition to the events below, the Litquake festival continues through Saturday. Check out our top picks for events to see at Litquake. 

Kathleen Alcott (The Dangers of Proximal Alphabets)

Thursday, October 11, 7 pm, at the Belmont Library (1110 Alameda de Las Pulgas, Belmont).

Saturday, October 13, 10 am, at West Coast Live (1 Ferry Building)

Tuesday, October 16, 6:30 pm, at Alley Cat Books (3036 24th St.)

Former local Alcott (left) has been garnering lots of praise for her debut novel, which tells the story of three kids who grow up as close friends-- brothers Jackson and James, and their next-door neighbor Ida. Both brothers are prone to sleepwalking, but when Jackson explodes into violent rages while he slumbers, Ida provides him with art materials, causing him to produce beautiful paintings he can't match while awake. As Jackson and Ida fall in love and James falls deeper into mental illness, the trio and their parents have to come to terms with their relationship. Tickets to Alcott's West Coast Live appearance ($15) are available here

James and Caitlin Freeman (The Blue Bottle Craft of Coffee)

Thursday, October 11, 7 pm, at Books Inc. Marina (2251 Chestnut St.)

Saturday, October 13, 3 pm, at Omnivore Books on Food (3885a Cesar Chavez St.)

The impresarios behind SF's biggest third-wave coffee phenomenon tell their story in this new book, which explores how they grew from a tiny roastery in Oakland to bi-coastal shops in New York and SF. James Freeman offers advice on properly selecting, roasting, brewing, and serving beans, while his wife Caitlin, a pastry chef and Miette alum, adds a few recipes for the delectable baked goods she serves at their various outposts. 

A.M. Homes (May We Be Forgiven)

Thursday, October 11, 1 pm, at Book Passage Corte Madera (51 Tamal Vista Blvd.) 

Saturday, October 13, 10 am, at West Coast Live (1 Ferry Building)

Homes (The End of Alice, The Safety of Objects) is known for her darkly comic portrayals of families and American cultural mores. Her latest book focuses on sibling relationships: Harry, a historian, has always been deeply envious of his younger brother George, a wealthy TV executive with a beautiful wife and two teenage children. But Harry also knows that George has a dark temper, and when it gets the better of him, Harry suddenly finds himself responsible for not only both teens, but his aging parents as well. Homes will appear alongside Alcott at West Coast Live on Saturday; tickets ($15) are available here

Stacy London (The Truth About Style)

Thursday, October 11, 7 pm, at Book Passage Corte Madera (51 Tamal Vista Blvd.) 

Friday, October 12, 12-2 pm, at Westfield San Francisco Centre (865 Market St., 2nd floor)

London, one half of the acerbic stylist team on TLC's popular What Not to Wear, turns the laser on herself for a change in this memoir/style guide, exploring a painful past that included severe, scarring psoriasis, a bout with anorexia, and a problem with binge eating. She discusses how developing a strong personal style gave her the confidence to take on her life, and then performs makeovers on eight real women, demonstrating how a better look can help people overcome their fears and struggles in life. The Westfield event has some ground rules, including purchasing a copy of the book; get more info here