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Reading Roundup: This Week's Top Literary Events

Virgie Tovar

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.

Virgie Tovar (Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love, and Fashion)

Thursday, November 8, 7:30 pm, at The Booksmith (1644 Haight St.)

In a country where over 60 percent of adults are overweight, and even thin women face pressure to be thinner, how can a fat woman not only accept, but embrace, who she is? Local writer and sexpert Tovar (above) solicited writing from women of size from around the country for this fat-positive book of essays, which discusses everything from how being fat informs personal politics to how to put together a cool, fashionable wardrobe despite limited options for plus-size shopping. Tovar and six of the book's writers will read their work, and the Booksmith will serve cupcakes and champagne.

Sherman Alexie (Blasphemy)

Wednesday, November 7, 7:30 pm, at Herbst Theatre (401 Van Ness Ave.)

Widely regarded as one of the leading chroniclers of contemporary Native American life, Alexie has written books for both adults (War Dances) and teens (The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which won a National Book Award). He also produced the popular indie film Smoke Signals, about a group of Native American teens, and advocates for Indian youth. Alexie's new book is a collection of short stories from throughout his career, blending some of his most popular work with 15 previously unpublished tales. Tickets are $22-27, and available here.

Literary Death Match: All Jew Review

Thursday, November 8, 7 pm, at Contemporary Jewish Museum (736 Mission St.) 

Goyim need not apply for this special edition of the popular Literary Death Match, featuring an all-Jewish lineup of judges and authors. Randall Babtkis, Zarina Zabrinksy, Suzanne Kleid, and Jason Turbow will each read a seven-minute-long selection of their work, with the judges crowning a winner. For this edition, the panel includes novelist Ayelet Waldman (judging literary merit), producer and director Richard Kramer (judging performance), comedian Nato Green (judging intangibles), and comedian Josh Kornbluth (judging Jewish intangibles). Tickets are $10, and include admission to the museum. 

24th Annual San Francisco Author's Luncheon

Saturday, November 10, 10 am-3:30 pm, at Marriott Marquis San Francisco (55 Fourth St.) 

The National Kidney Foundation's annual literary benefit brings together six diverse authors: novelist Emma Donoghue (Room), Fleur de Lys chef and cookbook author Hubert Keller (Hubert Keller's Souvenirs), novelist and physician Vincent Lam (The Headmaster's Wager), bestselling children's author Tom Lichtenheld (Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site), Brat-Pack-actor-turned-travel-writer Andrew McCarthy (The Longest Way Home), and flight-saving pilot Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger (Making a Difference). Tickets ($125) include a luncheon, talks, signings, and meet-and-greets with the authors, and all proceeds benefit kidney dialysis and transplant patients and their families.