This weekend I volunteered at the National Kidney Foundation Book luncheon. I assisted the Bay Area's newly-appointed genius (she won a McArthur Fellowship this month) Yiyun Le at her signing-table. She's a dedicated writer and reader--every time there was a pause in the action she'd open a volume on Turgenev and read a bit. Could it have been my personality? Most impressive to me was that book distributors were coming up saying how much they liked her work and how hard they were pushing it. And the book-loving people from Book Passages were most in awe of her and her story collection Gold Boy, Emerald Girl. Adding to my reading list . . . bought The Vagrants.
Abraham Verghese (Cutting for Stone), also starred . . . the people buying his books persisted with a long line while others were closing shop. He gave a great lecture; a seemingly wonderful man who really drew readers in. Caring more about doctoring than writing, indeed!
Other writers included Mac Barnett (The Clock Without a Face), Carlos Eire (Waiting for Snow in Havana), peripatetic Michael Krasny (Spiritual Envy: An Agnostic’s Quest), Armistead Maupin (Mary Ann in Autumn), and the charming Amanda Hesser (The Essential New York Times Cookbook). A memorable year of a great event.
Causes Kevin Arnold Supports
Poetry Center San Jose, East Palo Alto Police Activities League (EPA PAL), Squaw Valley Community of Writers, Yale Writing Conference, Gold Rush Writers