The usual flurry of author tours isn’t happening this fall — but authors are coming to Seattle nonetheless, by way of a computer screen. Here is just a sampling of some of the highlights of the virtual literary season; for many more events, check the websites of your favorite local venues and bookstores.

Fall Arts Guide 2020

Sigrid Nunez

Nunez’s new book, “What Are You Going Through,” examines the value of companionship, as a woman narrator describes a series of encounters. The author’s previous novel, “The Friend,” was a National Book Award winner. She’ll speak in conversation with Alexander Chee, author of “The Queen of the Night” and “How to Write an Autobiographical Novel.”

5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 16; free but registration required,

Laila Lalami and Viet Thanh Nguyen

Two masterful chroniclers of the immigrant experience in fiction — Lalami’s most recent novel is “The Other Americans”; Nguyen wrote the Pulitzer Prize-winning “The Sympathizers” — will speak in conversation, inspired by Lalami’s new nonfiction book “Conditional Citizens: On Belonging in America,” about what it means to be an American.

7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 25; $5-10 (free to audience members 22 and under);

Helen Macdonald

The naturalist and author of the bestselling “H is for Hawk” will speak about her latest book, “Vesper Flights,” a collection of essays whose wide-ranging topics include ostrich farming, mushroom hunting, songbird migration and sleeptime vespers.


 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 29; $33 (includes copy of book);

Michael Ian Black

Best known for “Wet Hot American Summer,” “Ed,” and numerous other television shows, Black is also an author; he’ll speak about his latest book, “A Better Man: A (Mostly Serious) Letter to My Son,” about boyhood, toxic masculinity, and moving forward as a man.

6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 30; $5 (free for those 22 and under);

Barbara Kingsolver

Kingsolver’s essays and novels (including “The Bean Trees,” “Animal Dreams” and “The Poisonwood Bible”) have been beloved for decades; she’s also an acclaimed poet, whose new volume of work is titled “How to Fly (In Ten Thousand Easy Lessons),” about finding lightness in everyday acts. Her appearance here includes a reading, an audience Q&A, and a copy of the book.

6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 30; $35 (includes book);; purchase tickets at

Ron Chew

A Seattle historian, author and community organizer, Chew will speak about his new book, “My Unforgotten Seattle,” about his years growing up in the city and its Asian American community, including the story of his own campaign to create a new home for the Wing Luke Museum. He’ll be in conversation with Seattle Times columnist Naomi Ishisaka.


6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 1; $5 (free to audience members aged 22 and under);

Tana French

If you are a crime-fiction lover and you haven’t yet discovered the Dublin Murder Squad — you, my friend, have missed something. French’s series, each narrated by a different member of the squad (though her latest novel, “The Trespasser,” is a stand-alone), are addictive masterpieces of suspense and voice. She’ll be interviewed at her SAL virtual event by another elegant practitioner of crime fiction, Ruth Ware (“The Turn of the Key,” “In a Dark, Dark Wood”).

7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 12; individual tickets begin at $35 (includes copy of book), subscriptions available;

Tommy Orange

Orange’s 2018 debut novel “There There,” a Pulitzer Prize finalist and winner of the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award, follows a group of Native Americans living in contemporary Oakland, California. The book is the 2020 Seattle Reads selection.

Time tbd, Saturday, Oct. 17; free but limited “seats” available, register at (also will livestream on SPL’s Facebook page).

Tasveer South Asian Literary Festival

The second annual Litfest, presented by the local South Asian arts nonprofit Tasveer, will have the theme of “Refuge,” explored by a strong lineup of authors through readings, panel discussions and Q&As. Among those scheduled to participate: Ayad Akhtar (“Homeland Elegies”), Fatima Bhutto (“The Runaways”), Chitra Bannerjee Divakaruni (“The Forest of Enchantments”) and Shruti Swamy (“A House Is a Body”).

Oct. 20-25; free;

Yaa Gyasi 

Gyasi’s debut novel “Homegoing” was the Seattle Reads pick at Seattle Public Library in 2018. Now she’s back with another layered saga of a family: “Transcendent Kingdom,” whose central characters are Ghanaian immigrants in Alabama facing addiction, grief and faith.

7:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 16; individual tickets $10-100, subscriptions available;