February Events!!

by Jessica on January 27, 2015

Hello there. Hope everyone’s year is getting started off on the right foot. Are you reading more? We hope so! February is just as packed as January and there’s no sign of stopping us in 2015!
Check out the full list of events below. See you soon!

Sunday, February 1, 4pm
Rebecca Scherm discusses and signs Unbecoming

On the dirty outskirts of Paris, Grace restores bric-a-brac and mends teapots. She calls herself Julie, says she’s from California, and slips back to a rented room at night. Regularly, she checks her hometown paper on the Internet. Home is Garland, Tennessee, and there, two young men have just been paroled. One she married and the other she’s in love with. Both men were jailed for a crime that Grace planned. The heist went bad but not before she was on a plane to Prague with a stolen canvas in her bag. In Paris, a waiting game begins as Grace’s web of deception and lies unravel and she becomes another woman entirely. This debut thriller about a daring art heist and a small-town girl’s major transformation is sure to attract fans of Gillian Flynn and Donna Tartt.

Monday, February 2, 7pm
Alexandra Fuller discusses and signs Leaving Before the Rains Come

A child of the Rhodesian wars and a daughter of two deeply complicated parents, Alexandra Fuller is no stranger to pain. But the disintegration of Fuller’s own marriage leaves her shattered. Looking to pick up the pieces of her life, she finally faces the tough questions about her past, about the American man she married, and about the family she left behind in Africa. Recalling her unusual courtship in Zambia—elephant attacks on the first date, sick with malaria on the wedding day—Fuller struggles to understand her younger self as she overcomes her current misfortunes. Fuller reveals how, after spending a lifetime fearfully waiting for someone to show up and save her, she discovered that, in the end, we all simply have to save ourselves.

Wednesday, February 4, 7pm
Jan-Christopher Horak discusses and signs
Saul Bass: Anatomy of Film Design

Academy Award winning filmmaker Saul Bass (1920-1996) defined an innovative era in cinema. With title sequences such as Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo (1958) and Billy Wilder’s The Seven Year Itch (1955), he introduced the idea that opening credits could tell a story and set the mood for the movie that followed. Bass’s stylistic influence can be seen in popular Hollywood franchises from the Pink Panther to James Bond, as well as in more recent works such as television’s Mad Men. The first book to examine the life and work of this fascinating figure, Saul Bass: Anatomy of Film Design explores the designer’s revolutionary career and his lasting impact on the entertainment and advertising industries.

Thursday, February 5, 11am
Mo Willems discusses and signs Waiting Is Not Easy!
Gerald is careful. Piggie is not. Piggie cannot help smiling. Gerald can. Gerald worries so that Piggie does not have to. Gerald and Piggie are best friends. In Waiting Is Not Easy!, Piggie has a surprise for Gerald, but he is going to have to wait for it. And Wait. And wait some more… (Disney Press)
PLEASE NOTE: We apologize but we are no longer taking class reservations for this event! 

Thursday, February 5, 7pm
Gayle Forman discusses and signs I Was Here
Cody and Meg shared everything. So when Meg drinks a whole bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room, Cody is shocked that there was no warning. When Cody travels to Meg’s college town to pack up the things Meg left behind she discovers a lot more that Meg has never told her. She learns of Ben McAllister, a boy with a guitar and secrets of his own. Cody also learns about an encrypted computer file that she eventually gets open, and everything she knew about her best friend and her death gets thrown into question.Gayle will be joined by Margaret Stohl & Deanna Kizis!

Friday, February 6, 7pm
Jenn Clark discusses and signs How to Be a Goddess: A Step-By-Step Guide to Becoming the Woman Men Dream About

Are you tired of reading relationship advice books only to see no real improvement in your relationships? Do you wish you had a dating coach to guide you every step of the way? Relationship guru and magazine columnist Jenn Clark has written the only book on love and dating you’ll ever need. Using her signature style of insightful straight talk, laugh-out-loud humor, and candid personal confessions that made her blog Jenn X: 30Something & Single so popular, Jenn takes you through each step of the relationship process. You’ll learn exactly what to do to become a goddess with men. You’ll find out where to meet guys, how to act on a first date, how to handle conflict in a long-term relationship, and everything in between. Ladies, meet your new best friend, Jenn!

 Saturday, February 7, 10:30am
Christian & Parker Jacobs present and sign Welcome to Goon Holler

From the creators of Yo Gabba Gabba comes a story about Tooba, a lonely, timid, and always hungry bigfoot, who stumbles upon Goon Holler, where Dosie takes him to a Goon Scout pancake breakfast and helps him make new friends. Tooba will also make a special appearance!

Sunday, February 8, 2pm
IWOSC Reads Its Own
IWOSC Reads Its Own is a spellbinding afternoon of eclectic, eccentric, and exemplary works — from poems to true stories to hilarious monologues and beyond, read aloud by distinguished IWOSC scribes. Fifteen of IWOSC’s talented member writers will read short excerpts from their work.  We’ll be regaled with their wit, have our emotions stirred, or be plunged into deep thought.  First-time and return readers will share their work.  Selections may be published, unpublished, or works in progress, several minutes in length. For more information, see www.iwosc.org or contact info@iwosc.org.

Monday, February 9, 7pm
Lily Yuriko Nakai Havey discusses and signs Gasa Gasa Girl Goes to Camp: A Nisei Youth Behind a World War II Fence

Lily Nakai and her family lived in southern California, where sometimes she and a friend dreamt of climbing the Hollywood sign. At age ten, after believing that her family was simply going on a “camping trip,” she found herself living in a tar-papered barrack, nightly gazing out at a searchlight. She wondered if anything would ever be normal again. In this creative memoir, Lily Havey combines storytelling, watercolor, and personal photographs to recount her youth in two Japanese-American internment camps during World War II. Vintage photographs reveal the historical, cultural, and familial contexts of the Nakais’ dislocation. The paintings paired with her animated writing pull us into a turbulent era when America disgracefully incarcerated, without due process, thousands of American citizens because of their race.

Tuesday, February 10, 7pm
Patricia Bracewell discusses and signs The Price of Blood

Readers first met Emma of Normandy in Patricia Bracewell’s gripping debut novel, Shadow on the Crown. Unwillingly thrust into marriage to England’s King Æthelred, Emma has given the king a son and heir, but they have never had a happy marriage. In The Price of Blood, Bracewell returns to 1006 when Æthelred, still haunted by his brother’s ghost, governs with an iron fist and a royal policy that embraces murder. As tensions escalate, Emma forges alliances to protect her young son from ambitious men including the man she loves. When Viking armies ravage England, loyalties are shattered and no one is safe from the sword.

Wednesday, February 11, 7pm
Lynsey Addario discusses and signs It’s What I Do: A Photographer’s Life of Love and WarMacArthur Genius Grant winner Lynsey Addario was just finding her way as a young photographer when September 11 changed the world. One of the few photojournalists with experience in Afghanistan, she gets the call to return and cover the American invasion. She makes a decision she would often find herself making–not to stay home, not to lead a quiet or predictable life, but to set out across the world, face the chaos of crisis, and make a name for herself.

 Addario finds in photography a way to travel with a purpose, and It’s What I Do is the story of that singular calling–how it shapes and drives her life and how it changes the lives of others. She captures virtually every major theater of war of the twenty-first century and from it creates a historical document of truth on the international conflicts that have made, and remade, our world. She photographs the Afghan people before and after Taliban reign, the civilian casualties and misunderstood insurgents of the Iraq War, as well as the burned villages and the countless dead in Darfur. She exposes a culture of violence against women in the Congo and tells the riveting inside story of her headline-making kidnapping by pro-Qaddafi forces in the Libyan civil war.
As a woman photojournalist determined to be taken as seriously as her male peers, Addario fights her way into a boys’ club of a profession. Rather than choose between her personal life and profession, Addario learns to strike a necessary balance. In the man who will become her husband, she finds at last a real love to complement her work, not take away from it, and as a new mother, she gains an all the more intensely personal understanding of the fragility of life.   Watching uprisings unfold and people fight to the death for their freedom, Addario understands she is documenting not only news but also the fate of society. It’s What I Do is more than just a snapshot of life on the front lines; it is witness to the human cost of war. (Penguin Press)

Thursday, February 12, 7pm
Vroman’s Bookstore presents an Evening with Nick Hornby in conversation with Carolyn Kellogg of The Los Angeles Times

Nick Hornby, the bestselling author of High Fidelity, About a Boy, and A Long Way Down will be speaking with Carolynn Kellogg about his writing career and his latest book, Funny Girl: A Novel.
Set in 1960’s London, Funny Girl is a lively account of the adventures of the intrepid young Sophie Straw as she navigates her transformation from provincial ingenue to television starlet amid a constellation of delightful characters. Insightful and humorous, Nick Hornby’s latest does what he does best: endears us to a cast of characters who are funny if flawed, and forces us to examine ourselves in the process.

Thursday, February 12, 7pm
Liza Palmer discusses and signs Girl Before a Mirror

Anna Wyatt is an account executive in a Mad Men world. She is recently divorced and has done a lot of emotional housecleaning including a self-imposed break from dating. While working on trying to win over a new client she stumbles upon a self-help book – Be the Heroine, Find You’re Hero – that leads her to a most unlikely place: a romance writers’ conference. If she can sign the Romance Cover Model of the Year Pageant winner for her campaign she’ll win the account. For Anna, taking control means taking chances and indulging in a steamy elevator ride with Lincoln Mallory, a dashing financial consultant she meets in the hotel. When the conference ends, Anna and Lincoln must decide if their intense connection is strong enough to survive outside the romantic fantasy they’ve created. Yet Lincoln is only one of Anna’s dilemmas. Now that her campaign is off the ground, others in the office want to steal her success.

Friday, February 13, 7pm
Kristin Hannah discusses and signs The Nightingale

From the #1 New York Times best selling author Kristin Hannah comes The Nightingale, an epic love story and family drama that centers on two sisters. Older sister Vianne Mauriac see her husband go off to the Front, never really believing that the Nazis will invade France until they do, leaving Vianne to do all she can to keep her and her daughter alive and well. At the same time Vianne’s passionate younger sister Isabelle is on the search for her purpose, briefly finding it when she falls completely in love with and joins Gäetan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France. But when Gäetan betrays her, Isabelle joins the Resistance and never looks back, risking her life time and again to save others. With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah captures the epic panorama of WWII and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war.

Saturday, February 14, 10:30am
Valentine’s Day Craft time with Jen

You’ll be ready to play Cupid once you have created your very own love arrows! This will make a very cute gift
for your valentine!


Monday, February 16, 7pm
Boris Fishman discusses and signs A Replacement Life
In this highly acclaimed literary debut, a failed journalist is asked to do the unthinkable: forge Holocaust-restitution claims for older Russian Jews in Brooklyn, New York. Yevgeny Gelman, grandfather of Slava Gelman, “didn’t suffer in the exact way” he needs to have suffered to qualify for the restitution the German government has been paying out to Holocaust survivors. But suffer he has–as a Jew in the war, as a second-class citizen in the USSR, as an immigrant to America. So? Isn’t his grandson a “writer”?

High-minded Slava wants to put this immigrant scraping behind him. Only the American Dream is not panning out for him–Century, the legendary magazine where he works as a researcher, wants nothing greater from him. Slava wants to be a correct, blameless American, but he wants to be a lionized writer even more. Slava’s turn as the Forger of South Brooklyn teaches him that not every fact is the truth, and not every lie a falsehood. It takes more than law abiding to become an American; it takes the same self-reinvention in which his people excel. Intoxicated and unmoored by his inventions, Slava risks exposure. Cornered, he commits an irrevocable act that finally grants him a sense of home in America, but not before collecting a price from his family. A Replacement Life is a dark, moving, and beautifully written novel about family, honor, and justice. (Harper Perennial)

Tuesday, February 17, 7pm
M.O. Walsh discusses and signs My Sunshine Away

It was the summer everything changed. My Sunshine Away is set in a Baton Rouge neighborhood best known for cookouts on sweltering summer afternoons, barrels of spicy crawfish, and passionate football fans. But in the summer of 1989, when fifteen-year-old Lindy Simpson—free spirit, track star, and belle of the block—experiences a horrible crime late one evening near her home, it becomes apparent that this idyllic stretch of Southern suburbia has a dark side, too. In My Sunshine Away, M.O. Walsh brilliantly juxtaposes the enchantment of a charmed childhood with the gripping story of a violent crime, unraveling families, and consuming adolescent love. Acutely wise and deeply honest, it is an astonishing and page-turning debut about the meaning of family, the power of memory, and our ability to forgive.

Wednesday, February 18, 7pm
Christopher Noxon discusses and signs Plus One
“Well observed, honest, and laugh-out-loud funny, Plus One tells a story from the inside of show business about being on the outside.”– Matthew Weiner, creator of “Mad Men”.

Christopher Noxon’s debut novel Plus One is a comedic take on bread-winning women and caretaking men in contemporary Los Angeles. Alex Sherman-Zicklin is a mid-level marketing executive whose wife’s fourteenth attempt at a TV pilot is produced, ordered to series, and awarded an Emmy. Overnight, she’s sucked into a mad show-business vortex and he’s tasked with managing their new high-profile Hollywood lifestyle. He falls in with a posse of Plus Ones, men who are married to women whose success, income, and public recognition far surpasses their own. What will it take for him to regain the foreground in his own life? (Prospect Park Books)

Thursday, February 19, 7pm
David Morris discusses and signs The Evil Hours: A Biography of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Just as polio loomed over the 1950s, and AIDS stalked the 1980s and ’90s, post-traumatic stress disorder haunts us in the early years of the twenty-first century. Over a decade into the United States’ “war on terror,” PTSD afflicts as many as 30 percent of the conflict’s veterans. In total, some twenty-seven million Americans are believed to be PTSD survivors. Yet to many of us, the disorder remains shrouded in mystery and shame. Now, David J. Morris, who is a war correspondent, former Marine, and PTSD sufferer himself, has written the essential account of this illness. Through interviews with individuals living with PTSD, forays into the scientific, literary, and cultural history of the illness, and memoir, Morris crafts a moving work that will speak not only to those with the condition and to their loved ones, but also to all of us struggling to make sense of an anxious and uncertain time.

Sunday, February 22, 11am
Laurie R. King presents and signs Dreaming Spies: A Novel of Suspense Featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes
Laurie R. King’s New York Times bestselling novels of suspense featuring Mary Russell and her husband, Sherlock Holmes, are critically acclaimed and beloved by readers for the author’s adept interplay of history and adventure. Now the intrepid duo is finally trying to take a little time for themselves–only to be swept up in a baffling case that will lead them from the idyllic panoramas of Japan to the depths of Oxford’s most revered institution.

After a lengthy case that had the couple traipsing all over India, Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes are on their way to California to deal with some family business that Russell has been neglecting for far too long. Along the way, they plan to break up the long voyage with a sojourn in southern Japan. The cruising steamer “Thomas Carlyle” is leaving Bombay, bound for Kobe. Though they’re not the vacationing types, Russell is looking forward to a change of focus–not to mention a chance to travel to a location Holmes has not visited before. The idea of the pair being on equal footing is enticing to a woman who often must race to catch up with her older, highly skilled husband. Aboard the ship, intrigue stirs almost immediately. Holmes recognizes the famous clubman the Earl of Darley, whom he suspects of being an occasional blackmailer: not an unlikely career choice for a man richer in social connections than in pounds sterling. And then there’s the lithe, surprisingly fluent young Japanese woman who befriends Russell and quotes haiku. She agrees to tutor the couple in Japanese language and customs, but Russell can’t shake the feeling that Haruki Sato is not who she claims to be.

Once in Japan, Russell’s suspicions are confirmed in a most surprising way. From the glorious city of Tokyo to the cavernous library at Oxford, Russell and Holmes race to solve a mystery involving international extortion, espionage, and the shocking secrets that, if revealed, could spark revolution–and topple an empire. (Bantam)

Sunday, February 22, 2pm
Vroman’s Local Author Day introduces Victor J. Wright, Doobie Shemer and Karrie Ross

Victor J. Wright discusses and signs The Wright Stuff: A Story of Perseverance, Inspiration and Hope The life of Victor Johnell Wright changed forever during a high-school football game in 1976, when the star running back of the sophomore team at John Muir High School in Pasadena, California suffered a spinal injury during a botched play. Psychologists often point to several attitudes people go through when faced with a crisis: fear, denial, anger, acceptance, etc. Victor experienced them all, yet his faith in God and the loving care of his family and closest friends have allowed him to live the past four decades in a way that has inspired thousands and has made him a community treasure.
Doobie Shemer discusses and signs Walking With Elijah: The Fable of a Life Journey and a Fulfilled Soul
Forty-five-year-old Doobie Shemer has it all: a loving family, two cars, a dog and two cats. He lives in his suburb house, holds a corporate executive position and he is financially stable. Life is comfortable and predictable. Yet something is missing, something he can’t describe, can’t put his finger on. A restless feeling of being incomplete dominates his whole existence. Nevertheless, Doobie soon learns that life for him was not meant to be routine or ordinary.
Karrie Ross discusses and signs Our Ever Changing World: Through the Eyes of Artists: Collaborations and Couples
Just how DO Artists live together? Is it a collaboration or…? Our Ever Changing World—Through the Eyes of Artists —Couples and Collaborations bring together twelve couples, 24 artists, one an artist and the other an artist or involved in a connecting profession, one main question and six self-guided interview questions with photos. What happens is an insight into how strengths, weaknesses, focus, determination, confidence and intention all play a part in the creating of a loving, giving, playful, atmosphere allowing them to thrive.

Monday, February 23, 7pm
Lisa Unger discusses and signs Crazy Love You

Darkness has a way of creeping up when Ian is with Priss. Even when they were kids, playing in the woods of their small upstate New York town, he could feel it. Still, Priss was his best friend, his protection from the bullies who called him a “loser” and from his family’s deadly secrets. Now that they’ve both escaped to New York City, Ian no longer inhabits the tortured shell of his childhood. He is a talented and successful graphic novelist, and Priss is still trouble. The booze, the drugs, the sex – Ian is growing tired of late nights together trying to keep the past at bay. Especially now that he’s met sweet, beautiful Megan, whose love makes him want to change for the better. But Priss doesn’t like change; it makes her angry. And when Priss gets angry, terrible things begin to happen.

Tuesday, February 24, 7pm
Bestselling author, Michael Connelly introduces Denmark’s Queen of Crime, Sara Blaedel and her American debut, The Forgotten Girls

Though not yet well-known in the U.S., Sara Blaedel’s work has found many fans like bestselling author, Michael Connelly, who called her “One of the best I’ve come across.” He’ll be here to introduce this internationally bestselling author and her first U.S. Translation entitled,
The Forgotten Girls.
The Forgotten Girls begins in a forest in Denmark, when a ranger discovers the fresh corpse of an unidentified woman. A large scar on one side of her face should make the identification easy, but nobody has reported her missing. After four days, Louise Rick–the new commander of the Missing Persons Department–is still without answers. But when she releases a photo to the media, an older woman phones to say that she recognizes the woman as Lisemette, a child she once cared for in the state mental institution many years ago. Lisemette, like the other children in the institution, was abandoned by her family and branded a “forgotten girl.” But Louise soon discovers something more disturbing: Lisemette had a twin, and both girls were issued death certificates over 30 years ago. As the investigation brings Louise closer to her childhood home, she uncovers more crimes that were committed–and hidden–in the forest, and finds a terrible link to her own past that has been carefully concealed.

Wednesday, February 25, 7pm
Michael Gazzaniga discusses and signs Tales from Both Side of the Brain

In Tales from Both Sides of the Brain, Gazzaniga tells the story of his life in science and his decades-long journey to understand how the separate spheres of our brains communicate and miscommunicate with each other. Both humorous and moving, Tales from Both Sides of the Brain interweaves Gazzaniga’s scientific achievements with his reflections on the challenges and excitement of working as a scientist. He paints a vivid portrait not only of his discovery of split-brain theory, but also of his many patients, friends, and family who have accompanied him on this wild ride of intellectual discovery.

Thursday, February 26, 7pm
Jim Bell discusses and signs The Interstellar Age: Inside the Forty-Year Voyager Mission

Voyager 1 left the solar system in 2012; its sister craft, Voyager 2, will do so in 2015. This fantastic journey began in 1977. The mission was planned as a grand tour beyond the moon; beyond Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. The fact that it actually happened makes this humanity’s greatest space mission. In The Interstellar Age, award-winning planetary scientist Jim Bell reveals what drove and continues to drive the members of this extraordinary team. A team that includes Ed Stone, Voyager’s chief scientist and the geologist whose Earth-bound experience would prove of little help in interpreting the strange new landscapes revealed in the Voyagers’ astoundingly clear images of moons and planets.

Friday, February 27, 6pm
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar signs Streetball Crew Book Two Stealing the Game
Chris Richards has always looked up to Jax, his older brother and his parents’ “golden child.” Lately, though, Jax has been full of surprises. First he dropped out of law school; then he started hanging out with some shifty-looking friends. One day Jax asks Chris to recruit his best middle school teammates for a pick-up basketball game in the park. Chris doesn’t think much of it until the wrong team wins and Jax goes ballistic. It turns out that Jax bet on the game, hoping to earn enough money to repay a debt to someone who doesn’t forgive easily. While Chris tries to walk a thin tightrope between helping his brother and staying out of trouble, his friend Theo does some behind-the-scenes detective work to learn what Jax has been up to. The day Chris is roped into a police investigation is the day he realizes he made the wrong play. (Disney-Hyperion)

This is a booksigning only.
No tickets necessary to be in line but we will be checking Vroman’s Bookstore receipts for confirmation of a Vroman’s purchase of at least one copy of
Streetball Crew Book Two Stealing the Game.

Saturday, February 28, 4pm
William Albracht & Marvin Wolf discuss and sign Abandoned in Hell: The Fight for Vietnam’s Firebase Kate
In October 1969, William Albracht, the youngest Green Beret captain in Vietnam, took command of a remote hilltop outpost called Fire Base Kate, held by only 27 American soldiers and 150 Montagnard militiamen. He found their defenses woefully unprepared. At dawn the next morning, three North Vietnamese Army regiments–some 6,000 men–crossed the Cambodian border and attacked.

Outnumbered three dozen to one, Albracht’s men held off repeated ground assaults by communist forces with fierce hand-to-hand fighting, air support and a dangerously close B-52 strike. For days, the NVA blanketed Kate in a rain of rockets, mortars, artillery, machineguns, and small arms, blocking efforts to resupply, reinforce, or evacuate the outpost. Albracht continually exposed himself to enemy fire to direct air strikes, to guide re-supply helicopters, to distribute ammunition and water to his men, to retrieve the dead and to rescue the wounded, often shielding men with his own body. Wounded by rocket shrapnel, he refused medical attention or evacuation. Exhausted from days without sleep, he continued to rally his men to beat off each new enemy attack. After five days, Kate’s defenders were out of ammo and water. Aerial resupply was suicidal, and reinforcements were denied by military commanders who had written off Kate. Albracht refused to surrender or die in place. Refusing to allow his men to surrender, Albracht led his troops, including many wounded, off the hill and on a daring night march through enemy lines.

Abandoned in Hell is an astonishing memoir of leadership, sacrifice, and brutal violence, a riveting journey into Vietnam’s heart of darkness, and a compelling reminder of the transformational power of individual heroism. Not since Lone Survivor and We Were Soldiers Once, And Young has there been such a gripping and authentic account of battlefield courage. (New American Library)