In L.A. this week: Brush up on politics and vampires

With the election a little over a week away, it’s a good time to brush up on presidents and politics  at a few book signings this week,  starting with Pulitzer prize-winning journalist David Maraniss. He will discuss the current commander-in-chief and his book, “Barack Obama: The Story,” today at 4:30 p.m. at  Occidental College. 

Later this week, historian Walter Stahr will discuss one of President Lincoln’s loyal Cabinet members, Secretary of State William Seward, in his new biography, “Seward: Lincoln’s Indispensable Man.” Seward initiated the acquisition of Alaska and survived a brutal attack by conspirators the same day as Lincoln’s assassination. Stahr will be appearing at Vroman’s on Friday at 7 p.m. and at Diesel Bookstore in Brentwood on Sunday at 3 p.m.

Abraham Lincoln may have played a vampire hunter on film earlier this year, but Abe won’t be the one slaying vamps in the upcoming film adaptation of Stephenie Meyer’s bestselling Twilight Series, “Breaking Dawn Part 2.” Film critic Robert Abele will be signing copies of his book “The Twilight Saga: The Complete Film Archive” at Dark Delicacies Sunday. Free posters signed by director Bill Condon will be given away (with purchase of the book).

As always, we recommend that you check with bookstores and venues listed below for any event cancellations or changes.


4:30-6 p.m. Monday: Discussion and book signing with David Maraniss, author of “Barack Obama: The Story.” Occidental College.

7 p.m. Monday: Marco Roth discusses his memoir “The Scientists.” Book Soup

7:30 p.m. Tuesday: Writers Bloc presents film critic-historian David Thomson in conversation about his new book, “The Big Screen: The Story of the Movies,” with novelist Steve Erickson. Goethe Institut.

7 p.m. Thursday: Author Edward J. Blum discusses and signs  “The Color of Christ: The Son of God and the Saga of Race in America.” Eso Won Books


7 p.m. Thursday: Don Lattin discusses and signs “Distilled Spirits: Getting High, Then Sober, With a Famous Writer, a Forgotten Philosopher, and a Hopeless Drunk,” a memoir incorporating stories of Aldous Huxley, Gerald Heard and Bill Wilson. Book Soup

7 p.m. Thursday: Molly Ringwald signs “When it Happens to You: A Novel in Stories.” Barnes & Noble The Grove at Farmers Market

7 p.m. Thursday: Poet Harryette Mullen reads from “Blues for Smoke.” Geffen Contemporary at MOCA

7:30 p.m. Thursday: Poet and UCLA professor Stephen Yenser will host poet Dora Malech, author of two collections of poems, “Say So” and “Shore Ordered Ocean.” Hammer Museum

7 p.m. Friday: Oliver Stone discusses and signs “The Untold History of the United States.” Book Soup

Noon Saturday:  Lisa Simmons tells the story of her husband, Randy, the first LAPD SWAT officer to lose his life in the line of duty, in “41 D-Man of Valor."  Barnes & Noble Woodland Hills

1:30-3 p.m. Saturday: World-renowned explorers and photographers Carol Beckwith and Angela Fisher will present their new book,  “Painted Bodies: African Body Painting, Tattoos, and Scarification.” Bowers Museum

5-7 p.m. Saturday: Cornelia Funke will be reading a sneak preview from “Fearless,” the next installment of her dark, fairy-tale inspired “Mirrorworld” series (publishing April 2013). Children’s Book World


3 p.m. Sunday: Historian Walter Stahr will discuss and sign his new biography, “Seward: Lincoln’s Indispensable Man.” Diesel Brentwood. Also Friday at 7 p.m. at  Vromans.

4 p.m. Sunday: Michael Feinstein discusses and signs “The Gershwins and Me: A Personal History in 12 Songs.” Book Soup

4 p.m. Sunday: Film critic Robert Abele will be signing copies of “The Twilight Saga: The Complete Film Archive.”  Dark Delicacies


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