Thursday, May 9, 2019

2019 Bay Area Book Festival - Sunday, May 5 - Day 2

Sunday, May 5th, marked day two of the Bay Area Book Festival! It was another cold and brisk day outdoors, but that didn't deter my husband and I from enjoying another full day of festivities.

Once again, I must reiterate how thankful and grateful I am to have attended the Bay Area Book Festival this year. The Bay Area Book Festival offered another wonderful lineup of amazing author speakers and book signings on day two. 

Here's a look at how my husband and I 
spent our time on Day 2 
of the 2019 Bay Area Book Festival!

Tayri Jones, Esi Edugyan, and moderator, Caille Millner.
Event #1

The first event my husband and I attended was the Writer to Writer: Esi Edugyan and Tayari Jones event from 11am to 12:15pm, which was moderated by Caille Millner. This event was held outdoors at the San Francisco Chronicle stage in the Martin Luther King Jr. Civic Center Park.

The BABF website describes this event as follows:
In our Writer to Writer series, two authors who are fans of each other’s work come together for conversation about writing and society today. Novelists Esi Edugyan and Tayari Jones both probe racial injustice in their work, and both women have received considerable praise. Edugyan’s sweeping, imaginative novel “Washington Black” was named a Top Ten Book of 2018 by the New York Times, and Tayari Jones’ “An American Marriage” was an Oprah’s Book Club pick for that same year. Edugyan uses magic realism to explore slavery and freedom in a stupendous tale that moves from Barbados to Nova Scotia to England. Jones weaves a devastating tapestry of a modern marriage wrenched apart by a discriminatory American justice system.
Despite the cold weather, this was a fun event to attend. After both authors spoke and took questions from the audience, they signed copies of their books. I didn't have my picture taken with Esi Edugyan, because I had been the first person in a long line of people waiting to have their books signed by both authors. In an effort to keep from holding up the line too long, I skipped on having my picture taken with her. However, I did have a photograph taken with Tayari Jones (below) and boy, was I having a bad hair day, lol!

Me with Tayari Jones
I loved reading An American Marriage by Tayari Jones earlier this year. At the time, I never imagined that I would be hearing her speak in person and briefly meeting her at the Bay Area Book Festival this year. I now have a signed copies of her novels, Leaving Atlanta (which I look forward to reading) and also An American Marriage.

I've yet to read Esi Edugyan's novel, Black Washington. I hear great things about Black Washington, so I look forward to reading!

Some More Free Time On Our Hands...

Author Gini Grossenbacher and me!
 My husband and I had about 45 minutes before we had to be at the next author speaking/book signing event, so I revisited the Avenue of Authors again. This time around, I purchased a copy of Madam of My Heart by Gini Grossenbacher. I'd met Gini Grossenbacher briefly at a previous Bay Area Book Festival, but didn't buy a copy of her novel at that time. I love historical fiction novels, so decided to buy a copy of Madam of My Heart this year.  Madam of My Heart also has good ratings/reviews on both Amazon and Goodreads, which is definitely a plus. I enjoyed meeting Gini Grossenbacher in person. The only funny thing that happened is that Gini had signed the copy of my novel "To Lina", not "To Lisa". I didn't notice this until after I arrived home Sunday evening. Oh well! Live and learn and be sure to check the details before having a photo taken.

Event #2

The second event that we attended at the Bay Area Book Festival on Sunday, May 5th was titled, A Conversation with Tayari Jones, and was held at the Freight & Salvage from 1:30pm to 2:45pm.

A Conversation with Tayari Jones had to be my favorite event of our entire weekend at the Bay Area Book Festival. My husband loved this event too and he mentioned that it was his favorite event as well. A Conversation with Tayari Jones was a fun, engaging discussion that focused primarily on An American Marriage. Other topics were discussed as well. 

I can't wait for the peeps at the Bay Area Book Festival to post a video of this particular author speaking event on YouTube, so that I may re-watch this event again online!!

As a side note/observation, I was kinda of surprised that this event with Tayari Jones wasn't entirely sold out as she's so popular! But alas, there were still quite a few open spaces left on the periphery of the Freight & Salvage.

Brooke Warner in conversation with Tayari Jones

Event #3

The last event my husband and I attended at the Bay Area Book Festival was titled, Ricanstruction: Popular Fiction and Power in Post-Maria Puerto Rico from 3:15pm to 4:30pm at The Caberet at The Marsh with authors Aya de Leon, Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, and moderator Tianna Paschel.

The BABF website describes this event as follows:
Hurricane Maria has permanently altered the Caribbean. While journalists did initial reporting on the disaster, the first books to be published about the hurricane are popular fiction. NYC’s Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, the creator of the superhero La Borinqueña, assembled “Ricanstruction: Reminiscing and Rebuilding Puerto Rico,” a comic anthology fundraiser to benefit survivors on the island. Berkeley author Aya de Leon’s next feminist heist book “Side Chick Nation” will be the first print novel about the hurricane. Join these two Puerto Rican writers to discuss the challenges of writing about disaster and why popular fiction has the power to bring the pueblo together around urgent issues.
I was interested in attending this specific event as it touches upon the important topic of Hurricane Maria and its devastating effects on Puerto Rico. I wanted to hear from both Aya de Leon and Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez on their viewpoints and insights on this important topic. Both authors were thoughtful in expressing their viewpoints in this discussion, so I was pleased to hear what they had to share with the BABF attendees at their event.

Proceeds for Ricanstruction: Reminiscing & Rebuilding Puerto Rico by Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez will be contributed towards continued hurricane relief efforts in Puerto Rico. I did purchase a copy of this book to be signed by Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez .

Additionally, I've read Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez's comic book, La Borinqueña, back in 2017. So, I was excited to hear him speak in person and sign copies of his books at the BABF. 

I've also met Aya de Leon at previous Bay Area Book Festival events. I truly enjoyed hearing Aya de Leon speak once again at this year's Bay Area Book Festival. I wish her loads of success in the launch of her latest novel in the Justice Hustlers feminist heist series titled, Side Chick Nation, next month.

Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, Aya de Leon, and moderator Tianna Paschel

Me and Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez.

Authors I missed hearing speak in person on day 2 of the BABF include:  Zoraida Córdova, Anna-Marie McLemore, and Cindy Pon. All three of these young adult writers were speaking and signing books at the same time Esi Edugyan and Tayari Jones were speaking and signing books, so unfortunately I missed hearing them at the Bay Area Book Festival.


  1. Another great day! Washington Black is an amazing novel. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. I will be on the look out for Side Chick Nation. Thanks for your report.

    1. Thank you for stopping by and leaving me a comment. :-)