Sam Lipstye reads from his new novel “Hark”

In an America convulsed by political upheaval, cultural discord, environmental collapse, and spiritual confusion, many folks are searching for peace, salvation, and—perhaps most immediately—just a little damn focus. Enter Hark Morner, an unwitting guru whose technique of “Mental Archery”—a combination of mindfulness, mythology, fake history, yoga, and, well, archery—is set to captivate the masses and raise him to near-messiah status. It’s a role he never asked for, and one he is woefully underprepared to take on. But his inner-circle of modern pilgrims have other plans, as do some suddenly powerful fringe players, including a renegade Ivy League ethicist, a gentle Swedish kidnapper, a crossbow-hunting veteran of jungle drug wars, a social media tycoon with an empire on the skids, and a mysteriously influential (but undeniably slimy) catfish.

In this social satire of the highest order, Sam Lipsyte, the New York Times bestseller and master of the form, reaches new peaks of daring in a novel that revels in contemporary absurdity and the wild poetry of everyday language while exploring the emotional truths of his characters. Hark is a smart, incisive look at men, women, and children seeking meaning and dignity in a chaotic, ridiculous, and often dangerous world.

Genre: Fiction

Madhuri Vijay reads from her debut novel “The Far Field”

An elegant, epic debut from a tremendous new talent and Pushcart Prize-winner, Madhuri Vijay The Far Field follows one young woman’s search for a lost figure from her childhood, a journey that carries her from cosmopolitan Bangalore in Southern India to the mountains of Kashmir and to the brink of a devastating political and personal reckoning.

In the wake of her mother’s death, Shalini, a privileged and restless young woman from Bangalore, sets out for a remote Himalayan village in the troubled northern region of Kashmir. Certain that the loss of her mother is somehow connected to the decade-old disappearance of Bashir Ahmed, a charming Kashmiri salesman who frequented her childhood home, she is determined to confront him. But as soon as Shalini arrives, she is brought face to face with Kashmir’s dark politics, as well as the tangled history of the local family that takes her in. And when life in the village turns volatile and old hatreds threaten to erupt into violence, Shalini finds herself forced to make a series of choices that could hold dangerous repercussions for the very people she has come to love.

With rare acumen and evocative prose, in THE FAR FIELD Madhuri Vijay masterfully examines Indian politics, class prejudice, and sexuality through the lens of an outsider, offering a profound meditation on grief, guilt, and the limits of compassion.

Genre: Fiction

Thomas Perry discusses and signs “The Burglar”

Elle Stowell is a young woman with an unconventional profession: burglary. But Elle is no petty thief–with just the right combination of smarts, looks, and skills, she can easily stroll through ritzy Bel Air neighborhoods and pick out the perfect home for plucking the most valuable items. This is how Elle has always gotten by–she is good at it, and she thrives on the thrill. But after stumbling upon a grisly triple homicide while stealing from the home of a wealthy art dealer, Elle discovers that she is no longer the only one sneaking around. Somebody is searching for her. As Elle realizes that her knowledge of the high-profile murder has made her a target, she races to solve the case before becoming the next casualty, using her breaking-and-entering skills to uncover the truth about exactly who the victims were and why someone might have wanted them dead. With high-stakes action and shocking revelations, The Burglar will keep readers on the edge of their seats as they barrel towards the heart-racing conclusion.
Genre: Fiction

Publication Party! Gregg Hurwitz discusses and signs “Out of the Dark”

When darkness closes in–he’s your last, best hope. Evan Smoak returns in Gregg Hurwitz’s #1 international bestselling Orphan X series.

Taken from a group home at age twelve, Evan Smoak was raised and trained as part of the Orphan Program, an off-the-books operation designed to create deniable intelligence assets–i.e. assassins. Evan was Orphan X. He broke with the Program, using everything he learned to disappear and reinvent himself as the Nowhere Man, a man who helps the truly desperate when no one else can, but now Evan’s past is catching up to him.

Someone at the very highest level of government has been trying to eliminate every trace of the Orphan Program by killing all the remaining Orphans and their trainers. After Evan’s mentor and the only father he ever knew was killed, he decided to strike back. His target is the man who started the Program and who is now the most heavily guarded person in the world: the President of the United States.

President Bennett knows that Orphan X is after him and, using weapons of his own, he’s decided to counter-attack. Bennett activates the one man who has the skills and experience to track down and take out Orphan X–the first recruit of the Program, Orphan A.

With Evan devoting all his skills, resources, and intelligence to find a way through the layers of security that surround the President, suddenly he also has to protect himself against the deadliest of opponents. It’s Orphan vs. Orphan with the future of the country–even the world–on the line.

Genre: Fiction

Activity: Vroman’s Local Author Day introducing Judy Choi, John T. L. Lu, and Colyna Winbush

Vroman’s Local Author Day introducing Judy Choi, John T. L. Lu, and Colyna Winbush

Judy Choi presents and signs The Cloud that Fell from the Sky

The Cloud that Fell from the Sky is a photographic art book that uses imagery, taken by Francis George, to interpret poetry written by Judy Choi and Phoenix Brown. In 2015, Judy Choi, a Harvard and University of Colorado Boulder alum, discovered the poems of her 15-year old niece, Phoenix Brown. Moved by the sophistication, eloquence, and poignancy of Phoenix’s writing, they both set forth to write a book in hopes of sharing their message. Phoenix’s poems document the travesty of a child watching both her parents succumb to drug addiction, while Judy’s writing portrays the anticipation, hope, and disappointment of love. The 152-page, 9-3/4″x 12″ book features 85 original images and 55 poems and is hand bound using traditional Asian stitch binding. Since each book is hand bound, there will be aspects unique to each book.

John T. L. Lu presents and signs The Unlikely Yank

This book is as much a memoir of my first ten years in the United States as it is an immigrant boy’s adventures. Join me on my journey from being a 15-year-old FOB in Hawaii, to academic enlightenments on the Mainland, to my backpacking exploits in Europe. Take a front row seat on my tour bus as I take you on my domestic and international tours. Discover how, I, The Unlikely Yank, utilize my earlier experiences to secure safe passage out of China during political chaos.

Colyna Winbush presents and signs It’s Not Your Fault: Coco Girl to the Rescue

This book, It’s Not Your Fault, is to help adults and children that have been Molested or sexually abused to talk about it and or get help weather its counseling or just to get to safety. This book is also a Molestation /Sexual abuse Prevention booklet as well as a conversation starter about Sexual abuse. This book also introduces COCO GIRL a Super Hero that helps abused children get to safety and she helps adults face the hurtful reality about Molestation and this book is a Great read and can HELP anyone that needs it.

Genre: Fiction

Publication Party! Amanda Sthers discusses and signs “Holy Lands”

As comic as it is deeply moving, Holy Lands chronicles several months in the lives of an estranged family of colorful eccentrics. Harry Rosenmerck is an aging Jewish cardiologist who has left his thriving medical practice in New York–to raise pigs in Israel. His ex-wife, Monique, ruminates about their once happy marriage even as she quietly battles an aggressive illness. Their son, David, an earnest and successful playwright, has vowed to reconnect with his father since coming out. Annabelle, their daughter, finds herself unmoored in Paris in the aftermath of a breakup.

Harry eschews technology, so his family, spread out around the world, must communicate with him via snail mail. Even as they grapple with challenges, their correspondence sparkles with levity. They snipe at each other, volleying quips across the Atlantic, the Mediterranean, and Europe, and find joy in unexpected sources.

Holy Lands captures the humor and poignancy of an adult family striving to remain connected across time, geography, and radically different perspectives on life.

Genre: Fiction

Johanna Hedva discusses their novel “On Hell” with Asher Hartman

On Hell transcribes a body broken by American empire, that of ex-con Rafael Luis Estrada Requena, hacking itself away from contemporary society. Johanna Hedva, author of Sick Woman Theory, takes the ferocious compulsion to escape (from capitalism, from the limits of the body-machine, from Earth) and channels it into an evisceration of oppression and authority. Equal parts tender and brutal, romantic and furious, On Hell is a novel about myths that trick and resist totalitarianism.
Genre: Fiction

Michael Conant discusses and signs “Mother’s Child”

Told in the voice of June, the story’s protagonist, Mother’s Child is a “slice of life” as it unfolds during a short period in a lifetime; strung together by one intensely charged event after another. It is the humor of life, marriage, and motherhood surrounded by the challenges of fighting the onslaught of mitochondrial disease, broken societal systems, and the suffering of broken hearts. It is the story of the average woman, finding her extraordinary voice and having the courage to be heard. (Incognito Publishing Press)

Those wishing to get books signed will be asked to purchase at least one copy of the author’s most recent title from Vroman’s. For each purchased copy of the newest title, customers may bring up to three copies from home to be signed. This policy applies to all Vroman’s Bookstore events unless otherwise noted. Save your Vroman’s receipt; it will be checked when you enter the signing line.

Genre: Fiction

Reading: Drunken Masters “Love & Liberation”

Drunken Masters is: 3 writers read/perform short excerpts from a work-in-progress in front of a panel of 3 established writers in the field who provide on-the-spot feedback. The only catch is that these master writers have been plied with drink or PG indulgence of their choosing. A laid-back, entertaining (and sometimes riotous) reading!

January theme is: LOVE & LIBERATION

Featuring:

Tanzila Ahmed (#GOODMUSLIMBADMUSLIM Podcast)
Natashia Deón (Grace)
Sara Borjas (Heart Like a Window, Mouth Like a Cliff)

Come early to drink with the Masters! Then stay and listen to good writing and great feedback.

At 8020 Studios in West Hollywood.
8020 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles CA 90046

Once again, co-sponsored by PEN America

Genre: Fiction