Portland Book Festival virtual events, presented by Bank of America, will feature variety-show style interviews. Each night, three authors whose work shares thematic connections will join remotely, and interviewers will be broadcasting live from Portland literary locations. The audience will be tuning in via our custom streaming platform, PDXBookFest.org. Get your virtual festival pass here!
Thursday night, we’ll be live from Powell’s Books with the theme “Hidden Worlds.” This evening will feature:
Julia Cooke discusses Come Fly the World: The Jet-Age Story of the Women of Pan Am with the Oregonian’s Amy Wang
Award-winning novelist Ruth Ozeki on The Book of Form and Emptiness, with OPB’s Dave Miller, host of Think Out Loud
Poet Atsuro Riley shares his new collection, Heard-Hoard, with David Biespiel
This year’s VIRTUAL Festival programming is presented by Bank of America. From November 8–12, Portland Book Festival will feature authors in a variety of virtual events, from live-streamed discussions to podcast and radio broadcasts. Access to the Festival’s virtual platform will be via a sliding scale ($0–$100) pass; one pass includes access to all five days of virtual events. Get your pass here.
MORE ABOUT TONIGHT’S AUTHORS AND THEIR BOOKS:
Julia Cooke‘s Come Fly the World tells a story of glamour, danger, liberation: in a Mad Men–era of commercial flight, Pan Am World Airways attracted the kind of young woman who wanted out, and wanted up. Required to have a college education, speak two languages, and possess the political savvy of a Foreign Service officer, a jet-age stewardess serving on iconic Pan Am between 1966 and 1975 also had to be between 5′3″ and 5′9″, between 105 and 140 pounds, and under 26 years of age at the time of hire. Cooke’s intimate storytelling weaves together the real-life stories of a memorable cast of characters as they embraced the liberation of their new jet-set life.
“Come Fly the World tells the story of adventurous women navigating a world on the cusp of change. In confident, clear-eyed, multi-layered prose, Julia Cooke brings to life the true stories of unforgettable Pan-Am stewardesses who defied convention, to seek more from life than they were given. This is a well-researched and fascinating history of air travel, gender equality, and so much more.”—Rachel Khong, author of Goodbye, Vitamin
A boy who hears the voices of objects all around him; a mother drowning in her possessions; and a Book that might hold the secret to saving them both—the brilliantly inventive new novel from the Booker Prize-finalist Ruth Ozeki. With its blend of sympathetic characters, riveting plot, and vibrant engagement with everything from jazz, to climate change, to our attachment to material possessions, The Book of Form and Emptiness is classic Ruth Ozeki: bold, wise, poignant, playful, humane, and heartbreaking.
“This compassionate novel of life, love and loss glows in the dark. Its strange, beautiful pages turn themselves. If you’ve lost your way with fiction over the last year or two, let The Book of Form and Emptiness light your way home.” —David Mitchell, Booker Prize-finalist author of Cloud Atlas and Utopia Avenue
Recognized for his “wildly original” poetry and his “uncanny and unparalleled ability to blend lyric and narrative,” Atsuro Riley deepens here his uncommon mastery and tang. In Heard–Hoard, Riley has “razor-exacted” and “raw-wired” an absorbing new sequence of poems, a vivid weavework rendering an American place and its people. At once an album of tales, a portrait gallery, and a soundscape; an “inscritched” dirt-mural and hymnbook, Heard-Hoard encompasses a chorus of voices shot through with (mostly human) histories and mysteries, their “old appetites as chronic as tides.” From the crackling story-man calling us together in the primal circle to Tammy figuring “time and time that yonder oak,” this collection is a profound evocation of lives and loss and lore.
This year’s VIRTUAL Festival programming is presented by Bank of America. Access to the Festival’s virtual platform will be via a sliding scale ($0–$100) pass; one pass includes access to all five days of virtual events. Get your pass here.