Reading Roundup: This Week's Top Literary Events


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.

Ron Tanner (From Animal House to Our House: A Love Story)

Tuesday, July 3, 7:30 pm, at The Booksmith (1644 Haight St.)

Thursday, July 5, 7 pm, at Books Inc. Berkeley (1760 4th St.)

After moving to Baltimore a decade ago, Tanner decided to purchase a condemned Victorian that was once home to the city's most notorious fraternity-- despite knowing nothing about renovating old houses. What's more, his partner in the project was his then-girlfriend Jill (pictured at left with Tanner), who he'd only been dating for six months. Tanner's memoir tells the story of the couple's attempts to restore the home without destroying their relationship in the process. The Booksmith event (in collaboration with the California Preservation Foundation and the Victorian Alliance of San Francisco) will offer extra insights for aspiring DIY renovators, including slides and a Q&A with Tanner, who's now a licensed home inspector. 

Christian Kiefer (The Infinite Tides)

Saturday, July 7, 4 pm, at Book Passage Corte Madera (51 Tamal Vista Blvd.)

In Kiefer's debut novel, astronaut Keith Corcoran simultaneously achieves his dream of living on the International Space Station and weathers enormous tragedy when his 16-year-old daughter dies in a car crash. After his wife leaves him, the newly earthbound astronaut and brilliant engineer has to discover what's truly important, with the help of his neighbor and unlikely new friend, a Ukranian immigrant who shares his affection for the stars. Kiefer is also an acclaimed singer-songwriter, and he'll be accompanied by his band at the Book Passage event (where Tang will be served). Can't catch Kiefer this weekend? He'll return to the Bay Area to read at Mrs. Dalloway's in Berkeley on August 2nd.

Stephanie Lucianovic (Suffering Succotash: A Picky Eater's Quest to Understand Why We Hate the Foods We Hate)

Monday, July 9, 6 pm, at Omnivore Books on Food (3885a Cesar Chavez St.)

Tuesday, July 10, 6 pm, at Book Passage SF (1 Ferry Building)

Though she's a culinary school grad and sometime cheesemonger, local author Lucianovic concealed a dark secret within her food-friendly profession: she's a deeply picky eater who spent her childhood living on grilled cheese and can't stand peaches, among other edibles. Her book explores the science behind what makes us picky, including "feeding" clinics that help others overcome their hated foods, the science of the supertaster, and lessons from sword-swallowers about overcoming a strong gag reflex. In the process, Lucianovic also tries to overcome her own dislike of certain foods. 

Tim Kreider (We Learn Nothing)

Monday, July 9, 7 pm, at Books Inc. Berkeley (1760 4th St.)

Humorist and cartoonist Kreider's recent New York Times essay about the perils of always being "busy" was a huge hit; now, he's appearing in Berkeley to offer more insights into modern American foibles. Whether it's a brush with death that had no effect on his behavior, getting outed as a "moby" left-winger at a Tea Party rally, or coping with a pathologically lying friend who won't seek help, Kreider's chronicles of his life experiences (punctuated with cartoons) are funny and deeply honest. 

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