Here are some of the most noteworthy literary events and author appearances happening this summer.

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If you can lift your head from your books this summer, here are just a few of the authors and literary events happening around town — mark those calendars! Dates are, as always, subject to change; events are free unless otherwise noted.


Temple Grandin

The professor, autism spokesperson, scientist, inventor and author speaks specifically to young people at this event, at which she’ll discuss her new children’s book “Calling All Minds: How to Think and Create Like an Inventor.” 7 p.m. June 1 at University Temple United Methodist Church, presented by University Book Store; $18.99 (includes book; available through

Summer Books Guide 2018

Elizabeth George

Creator of the best-selling Inspector Lynley crime novels (a favorite series of mine), George will headline the 2018 Summer Bookfest at Eagle Harbor Books on Bainbridge Island, joined by 19 other local authors. George will sign copies of her latest Lynley novel, “The Punishment She Deserves,” as well as her book about writing, “Write Away: One Novelist’s Approach to Fiction and the Writing Life.” Twenty percent of all sales during the event will benefit the Bainbridge Schools Foundation. Noon to 2 p.m. June 2, Eagle Harbor Books.

Ken Jennings

Local author and “Jeopardy” champion Jennings takes on comedy with his new book “Planet Funny: How Comedy Took Over Our Culture.” 7 p.m. June 4, Elliott Bay Book Co.

Geoff Baker

The Seattle Times sportswriter, covering the Seattle Sounders, speaks about his new book, “100 Things Sounders Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die.” 7 p.m. June 4, Third Place Books at Seward Park, also 6 p.m. June 29 at Third Place Books at Lake Forest Park.

Khaled Beydoun

A race theorist and law professor, Beydoun will discuss his book “American Islamophobia: Understanding the Roots and Rise of Fear.” 7:30 p.m. June 4, Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute, presented by Town Hall; $5.

Nicola Griffith

The Seattle-based author of the acclaimed 2013 novel “Hild,” set in seventh-century England, has a new and very different novel out this year: “So Lucky,” about a successful contemporary woman facing the reality of a chronic illness. 6:30 p.m. June 7, Eagle Harbor Books.

Semiannual Used Book Sale

Not an author per se, but worth noting the date: All three Third Place Books locations (Lake Forest Park, Ravenna, Seward Park) will be offering 40 percent off on all used books, June 9-10 only.

Madeline Miller

The Orange Prize-winning author will speak in conversation with Nancy Pearl about “Circe,” her new novel about the mythological witch, inspired by Homer’s “Odyssey.” 7 p.m. June 11, University Book Store.

Ken Auletta

The New Yorker columnist explores the world of the advertising industry in “Frenemies: The Epic Disruption of the Ad Business (And Everything Else).” 7 p.m. June 12, University Book Store.

Michael Eric Dyson

Dyson, author of the best-selling nonfiction book “Tears We Cannot Stop,” speaks in conversation with Angela Rye about his new book, “What Truth Sounds Like: RFK, James Baldwin, and Our Unfinished Conversation about Race in America.” 7 p.m. June 13, University Temple United Methodist Church, presented by University Book Store; $24.99 (includes book, available through

Tommy Orange

There’s plenty of buzz already for Orange’s first novel, “There There,” a multigenerational story of urban Native Americans making their way to a powwow. 7 p.m. June 13, Elliott Bay Book Co.

Angela Garbes

A former staff writer for The Stranger, Garbes will speak (with Lindy West) about her new book “Like a Mother: A Feminist Journey Through the Science and Culture of Pregnancy.” 7:30 p.m. June 13, The Summit Event Space (420 E Pike St., Seattle), presented by Town Hall; $5.

Charles Johnson

A National Book Award winner (in 1990, for “Middle Passage”) and emeritus professor of English at the University of Washington, Johnson will read from his new story collection, “Night Hawks.” 7 p.m. June 13, Ravenna Third Place Books.

Fredrik Backman

The best-selling Swedish author of “A Man Called Ove” (soon to be a Tom Hanks movie) and “Beartown” returns to town with his new book, also set in Beartown, “Us Against You.” 7 p.m. June 14 at Third Place Books at Lake Forest Park; tickets required (with advance purchase of book).

Roxane Gay

Gay, acclaimed author of fiction (“An Untamed State,” “Difficult Women”) and nonfiction (“Bad Feminist: Essays,” “Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body”), is the editor of the new anthology “Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture.” She’ll discuss the book at 7 p.m. June 21, University Temple United Methodist Church, presented by University Book Store; $16.99 or $26.99 (includes choice of “Hunger” or “Not That Bad,” available through

Cara Black

The author of the popular Aimee Leduc mysteries, set in Paris, is in town with her 18th novel in the series, “Murder on the Left Bank.” 7 p.m. June 22, Ravenna Third Place Books.

Tessa Fontaine

Ever dreamed of running away with a circus? Fontaine’s first book is “Electric Woman: A Memoir in Death-Defying Acts,” about her time in a traveling carnival. 7 p.m. June 25, Elliott Bay Book Co.

Ben Rhodes

A senior aide and former deputy national-security adviser in the Obama administration, Rhodes is here with his behind-the-scenes memoir: “The World As It Is: A Memoir of the Obama White House.” 7 p.m. June 27, Seattle Public Library’s Central Library.

Terrance Hayes

The winner of the National Book Award for Poetry in 2010, Hayes will read from his new collection, “American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin.” 7 p.m. June 27, Langston Hughes Performing Art Institute.

Amber Tamblyn

The actor (“The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants,” “House,” “Two and a Half Men”) is here with her debut novel, “Any Man,” the tale of a serial female rapist. 7 p.m. June 29, Third Place Books at Seward Park; ticket required (via advance purchase of book).


Nell Painter

Painter, a historian who taught for many years at Princeton, returned to school after retirement to study painting, earning a BFA and MFA. She writes of the experience in her new memoir, “Old in Art School.” 7 p.m. July 9, Northwest African American Museum.

Ottessa Moshfegh

The author of “Eileen” and “Homesick for Another World” returns with her latest novel, “My Year of Rest and Relaxation,” about a young Manhattan woman embarking on a year of hibernation. 7 p.m. July 13, Elliott Bay Book Co.

Thor Hanson

Bee-lovers alert: Hanson, an author and biologist, will speak about his new book “Buzz: The Nature and Necessity of Bees.” 7 p.m. July 14, Elliott Bay Book Co., and 7 p.m. July 19, Third Place Books at Lake Forest Park.

Glen David Gold

Gold, author of the novels “Carter Beats the Devil” and “Sunnyside,” is in town with his first memoir, “I Will Be Complete,” about growing up with his very unconventional mother. 1 p.m. July 17, Ravenna Third Place Books (Literary Luncheon series; tickets are $45 and include book and lunch); 7 p.m. July 17, Third Place Books at Lake Forest Park.

Finn Murphy

Murphy, a long-haul trucker, has put in more than a million miles on the road; he’s briefly stopping in town to celebrate the paperback release of his memoir, “The Long Haul.” 7 p.m. July 19, Ravenna Third Place Books.

Colleen Hoover

A best-selling YA and adult author, Hoover returns to town with her latest novel, “All Your Perfects,” about a troubled marriage. 7 p.m. July 24, Third Place Books at Lake Forest Park.

Laurie Frankel

Frankel’s 2017 novel, “This is How it Always is,” is the 14th annual Lake Forest Park Reads title, and is 20 percent off at Third Place Books stores in June and July. Read it, and join her for the discussion at July 31 at Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park.


Sallie Tisdale

Tisdale, a Pushcart Prize-winning essayist and experienced palliative-care nurse, discusses her new book “Advice for Future Corpses (And Those Who Love Them): A Practical Perspective on Death and Dying.” 7 p.m. Aug. 4, Elliott Bay Book Co.

Valerie Trueblood

Local author Trueblood will read from her new collection, “Terrarium: New and Selected Stories.” 7 p.m. Aug. 7, Elliott Bay Book Co.

Edgar Cantero

Cantero, author of the 2017 best-seller “Meddling Kids,” returns with a new novel, “This Body’s Not Big Enough for Both of Us.” 7 p.m. Aug. 9, Elliott Bay Book Co.

Patricia Hampl

The author of “A Romantic Education” comes to town with a new memoir about daydreaming, “The Art of the Wasted Day.” 7 p.m. Aug. 20, Elliott Bay Book Co.

Back to Hogwarts Party

In honor of the 20th anniversary of the U.S. release of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” this family-friendly bash will include a costume contest, wand booth, sorting hat and a 20th birthday cake. 7 p.m. Aug. 28, Third Place Books at Lake Forest Park.


Kim Brooks

Charged with a crime several years ago after leaving her child alone in a car for a few minutes, Brooks reflects on the changing world of parenting in her new memoir “Small Animals: Parenthood in the Age of Fear.” She’ll speak with local author Claire Dederer (“Love & Trouble”).  7 p.m. Sept. 4, Elliott Bay Book Co.