Local Lit | Top tips for book lovers in March

Caroline Paul presents “Tough Broad” at Mrs. Dalloway’s Bookstore, March 5

The subtitle says all about bestselling local author Paul’s new book: “From Boogie Boarding to Wing Walking–How Outdoor Adventure Improves Our Lives as We Age.” Tough Broad springboards from Paul’s own outdoor adventures to land on the stories of bird watchers, hills runners, airplane wing riders, boogie boarders and other women — all of them well over the age of 50. Living in a dynamic body as it changes doesn’t mean the rocking chair is an (aging) girl’s best friend. Paul is the author of “Gutsy Girl: Escapades for Your Life of Epic Adventure”, her memoir, “Fighting Fire”, and others. Her TED talk about raising brave girls has been viewed over 2 million times. Paul will be in conversation with Elaine Lee, a Bay Area-based travel writer and editor of “Go Girl: The Black Woman’s Book of Travel and Adventure.” Expect to leave the Elmwood neighborhood bookshop energized — at any age.

March 5; 7 p.m.; free; mrsdalloways.com

YWCA’s 30th Annual Festival of Women Authors at Berkeley Marina, March 16

The annual event marks its third decade with a cavalcade of women authors and emphasis on literary works from people of color. The roster this year includes Ingrid Rojas Contreras (“The Man Who Could Move Clouds”, a Pulitzer Prize finalist), Oakland’s Dorothy Lazard (“What You Don’t Know Will Make a Whole New World”), National Bestselling Author Gail Tsukiyama (“The Brightest Star”, “Dreaming Water”), and Independent Press Winner Irene Sardanis (“Connections”, “Out of the Bronx)”. Each writer has the forum for designing a presentation of her/their choice and most often, the stories are inspiring messages for professional writers and also for women whose voices have yet to be heard. Learn while enjoying breakfast, lunch, book signings, and swag bags, the diverse paths and practices that brought their books into being.

March 16; 8:30 a.m.  – 2:30 p.m., $120; https://www.ywca-berkeley.org/events-feed/festival-of-women-authors

Berkeley Symphony: Literary Soundscapes at First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley, March 23

This signature program with literature transformed into sonic resonance is a remarkable opportunity combing notes and words. The concert marks the West Coast premiere of composer Joel Puckett’s orchestral song cycle, There Was a Child Went Forth, inspired by Walt Whitman’s poetry, just one of the program’s multifaceted features. Included among others, the charismatic and much-heralded tenor Nicholas Phan (appearing in Puckett’s work), the orchestra performing the overture from Mendelssohn’s Shakespeare-inspired A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and jazz selections from composer Laura Karpman’s Ask Your Mama: 12 Moods for Jazz. Infusing the evening with Langston Hughes’ masterwork, Karpman’s work is sung by a trio of accomplished women vocalists: jazz singer Clairdee, Mezzo-soprano, Olivia Johnson, and soprano Arianna Rodriguez. This is great literature come alive and a sensory experience unique to the orchestra; book lovers can hope it becomes a regular part of each season in future..

March 23; 7:30 p.m.; $40; berkeleysymphony.org

George O’Connor at Great Good Place for Books, March 27

One good way to get more people reading is to serve up a new book with pizza attached. That is exactly what will happen at the venerable Montclair Village bookstore when O’Connor, the New York Times–bestselling author of “Olympians,” a Greek-god centric series of graphic novels, mixes tales of outer realm gods engaged in wars, subterfuge, and quests for illumination with pepperoni, cheese, and chewy dough. The in-person event introduces “Asgardians: Odin,” the first volume in his new series. The Brooklyn-based writer/illustrator has created picture books such as the New York Times–bestselling “Kapow!” and “If I Had a Triceratops.” As an innovator in the graphic novel genre, his first book, “Journey into Mohawk Country,” tested the parameters with text entirely drawn from a historical journal of seventeenth-century Dutch trader Harmen Meyndertsz van den Bogaert. Come and taste it all: strong text, bold artistic talent, and of course, great pizza!

March 27; 6:30 p.m.; free; ggpbooks.com

This story was updated on March 5 and a listing that included inaccurate information has been removed. There is no feminist zine making event scheduled at the Claremont branch of the Berkeley public library.

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