Your L.A. literary week: David Sedaris, Roy Choi, Vermin returns

David Sedaris returns to L.A. to read from his latest book, "Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls."
(Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)

Sometimes a week goes by and the Los Angeles literary landscape is as barren and desolate as the Salton Sea. This is not one of those weeks.

Tonight: Vermin on the Mount returns. The punk rock reading series takes its name from its original location, the Mountain Bar, where it began 10 years ago. Host and organizer Jim Ruland has found a new home for the semi-regular series, at NOMAD Studio near the L.A. River. Readers on the bill are Scott O’Connor, Louis Armand, Melissa Broder, Juliet Escoria, Ariana Kelly and Damien Ober. If you’ve been trying to think of a bookish way to honor Veteran’s Day, here’s your answer: Ruland is a Navy vet.

Tuesday: Jerry Stahl with Richard Lange at Skylight Books. Did you miss Jerry Stahl talking to Marc Maron at the Last Bookstore on Friday? I did. Now there’s another chance to hear the author of “Permanent Midnight” and “I, Fatty” talk about his new novel, “Happy Mutant Baby Pills”; Lange has a sweet demeanor but writes dark noir, so who knows what kind of turns their conversation will take.
Or would you prefer something more upbeat -- something funny, or with jazz hands? Also on Tuesday, Carol Burnett, recent recipient of the Kennedy Center’s Mark Twain Prize, will be in conversation with her old colleague Tim Conway, author of the memoir “What’s So Funny,” at Writers Bloc at the Saban Theater. And author Sam Wasson reads from and signs “Fosse,” his massive new biography of the choreographer, at Book Soup. And at the New Beverly, which has been hosting literary events as well as movies recently, comedian Rob Delaney reads from and signs his new book “Rob Delaney: Mother. Wife. Sister. Human. Warrior. Falcon. Yardstick. Turban. Cabbage.”


Wednesday: Roy Choi, the chef behind the Kogi BBQ truck, which as Angelenos know started the whole darn food truck movement, will talk about his new memoir-with-recipes, “L.A. Son.” The restaurateur will be at ALOUD on Wednesday with interviewer Evan Kleinman of Good Food, and at Book Soup in West Hollywood on Friday. If you can’t catch him this week, on Tuesday, Nov. 19, he’ll be at Skylight, and the Kogi truck will be parked outside.

Also on Wednesday, novelist Daniel Alarcon will be at Skylight with his latest, “At Night We Walk in Circles.”

Thursday: Alexander McCall Smith, author of the beloved “No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency” series, comes to All Saints Church in Pasadena courtesy of Vroman’s with his new novel, “The Minor Adjustment Beauty Salon.” Tickets to the event, which are $24.95, include a copy of the book.

Also on Thursday, it’s Artwalk Night in Downtown L.A., and the Last Bookstore is hosting the reading series Hot Dish. On the menu: Jim Gavin and Mary Otis, both marvelous purveyors of short fiction, plus television writer Tracy McMillan (author of “Why You’re Not Married... Yet”), Meg Howrey, one-half of the writing team behind bestseller Magnus Flyte, and essayist Julia Ingalls.

Friday: As of this writing, there are still tickets available to see David Sedaris. He’s at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, in a show presented by KPCC and books -- his latest is the collection “Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls” -- sold by Vroman’s.

Saturday: Indie publisher Curbside Splendor presents three authors at Pop Hop Books & Printshop in Highland Park: Jim Greer, Franki Elliot and Chris Terry.

And Sunday is a day of rest, a time to sit and read -- as long as nothing else comes up.


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