MONDAY Lyndon Johnson is perhaps the modern president who most lends himself to literary works. He’s appeared in Robert Caro’s ridiculously ambitious biographies, one of David Foster Wallace’s best short stories, and Robert Schenkkan’s incredible plays. But tonight, Betty Boyd Caroli looks at an under-appreciated side of the LBJ story in her book Lady Bird and Lyndon. Lady Bird Johnson could not have been a dull or unintelligent woman, but she’s gotten short shrift in most of the above-mentioned literary accounts. Caroli will be reading from the book at Town Hall Seattle tonight.
TUESDAY Elliott Bay Book Company hosts Michael Witwer, who will be reading from his new book Empire of Imagination: Gary Gygax and the Birth of Dungeons and Dragons. This is the first biography of Dungeons & Dragons inventor Gary Gygax, who has one of the all-time best names.
WEDNESDAY It’s time for the twelfth edition of WordsWest at C&P Coffee Company in West Seattle. The readers tonight are memoirist Allison Green, who recently wrote a great blog post about the controversy surrounding the Seattle: City of Literature anthology, and poet Hannah Faith Notess, whose debut collection Ghost House knocked my socks off.
THURSDAY: The Northwest African American Museum hosts Lauret Savoy, whose book Trace: Memory, History, Race, and the American Landscape was called “a stunning excavation and revelation of race, identity, and the American landscape” by Terry Tempest Williams.
FRIDAY: It’s time again for the Hugo Literary Series at Hugo House. Like every entry in the series this year, writers will present new work based on a cliche. Tonight’s cliche is "Beggars can't be choosers.” The writers are novelist and essayist Leslie Jamison, the poet Roger Reeves, and Portland novelist Alexis M. Smith. YVES singer Susie Philipsen will also present new music on the theme.
SATURDAY: I suppose it’s time to start thinking about Christmas shopping. Today is the 2015 Holiday Bookfest at the Phinney Neighborhood Center, which will for the day be turned into “a boutique bookstore, created especially by local indie bookstore Secret Garden.” Find books, baked goods, and 27 local authors, including Garth Stein, Elizabeth George, Nancy Horan, Jim Lynch, Megan Chance, and Sean Beaudoin. Go get some autographed books for Christmas.
SUNDAY: Okay, so Patti Smith at Town Hall has long since sold out. So here’s an alternate event for the kids in your life: at the southwest branch of Seattle Public Library, there will be a workshop for kids “based in the legend of El Bibliobandido (or 'Book Bandit'), a ravenous, story-eating bandit that pesters youth to write and offer him fresh-baked stories.” The stories will involve digital media, paper craft, and good old-fashioned talkin’ and writin’. This looks like it should be a fun way to cap a fun week.