Kepler's Events Coming Soon

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Credit: Keith Villaluz


Launch: Jeff Chang

Tuesday, September 13, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

We Gon' Be Alright: Notes on Race and Resegregation



In these provocative, powerful essays, acclaimed writer/journalist Jeff Chang takes an incisive and wide-ranging look at the recent tragedies and widespread protests that have shaken the country. Through deep reporting with key activists and thinkers, passionately personal writing, and distinguished cultural criticism, We Gon’ Be Alright links #BlackLivesMatter to #OscarsSoWhite, Ferguson to Washington D.C., the Great Migration to resurgent nativism. Chang explores the rise and fall of the idea of “diversity,” the roots of student protest, changing ideas about Asian Americanness, and the impact of a century of racial separation in housing. Throughout these essays, Chang includes the voices of many leading activists from around the country as he charts how popular voices on the ground and in social media have been the main catalyst for protest and change.

Jeff Chang is the Executive Director of the Institute for Diversity in the Arts at Stanford University. He co-founded and ran the indie hip hop label, then known as SoleSides, but now known as Quannum Projects, and helped launch the careers of DJ Shadow, Blackalicious, Lyrics Born, and Lateef the Truth Speaker. In 2007 Chang interviewed Barack Obama, for the cover of Vibe Magazine. He's the author Who We Be and Can't Stop Won't Stop and has written for The Nation, the New York Times, the San Francisco ChronicleThe Believer, Foreign Policy, Salon, Slate, and Buzzfeed, among others.




PREMIER EVENT: Daniel J. Levitin

Wednesday, September 14, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

A Field Guide to Lies: Critical Thinking in the Information Age

Tickets are available at Kepler's and online at Brown Paper Tickets


The New York Times bestselling author of The Organized Mind and This Is Your Brain on Music brings us a primer to the critical thinking that is more important and necessary now than ever. There’s no more perfect time than election season to join us for an event that asks us not to passively accept statistical data and faulty arguments, not to dangerously repeat it, and certainly not to make decisions based upon it without first checking the plausibility and reasoning of the information.

Dr. Levitin is a leader in his field, Dean of Social Sciences at the Minerva Schools at KGI in San Francisco, and a faculty member at the Center for Executive Education in the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley.

There is no question Big Data has become a dominant theme of our culture, or that there is more information available to us than ever before oftentimes used to deceive, misdirect, and obfuscate.  Dr. Levitin shows us how to sharpen our critical thinking skills so that we can critically evaluate claims that charlatans, the media, and politicians would have us swallow without a second thought.

Credit: Nataline Calia




PREMIER EVENT: Daniel J. Siegel

Thursday, September 15, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

Mind: A Journey to the Heart of Being Human

Tickets are available at Kepler's and online at Brown Paper Tickets


Internationally acclaimed author and UCLA psychiatrist Dr. Daniel Siegel is easily the most respected name in his field, and his new book, Mind: A Journey to the Heart of Being Human, is being praised by Deepak Chopra, Arianna Huffington, Diane Ackerman, Alanis Morissette, and more. 

Dr. Siegel has led us on thoughtful explorations of the teenage brain, personal transformation, brain development in people of all ages, and so much more.  Now he broadens his focus to try and define the essence of the mind.  Emotions, thoughts, and memories have been described and studied but more broadly: What is the mind? What is the experience of the self truly made of? How does the mind differ from the brain? No matter what is happening in the world, we’re always confronted with pressing personal and global questions about identity, connection, and the cultivation of well-being in our lives.

Join us for a deeply personal and scientific journey into consciousness, subjective experience, and information processing, uncovering the mind’s self-organizational properties that emerge from both the body and the relationships we have with one another, and with the world around us.



PREMIER EVENT: Julian Guthrie

Tuesday, September 27, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

How to Make a Spaceship: A Band of Renegades, an Epic Race, and the Birth of Private Spaceflight

Tickets are available at Kepler's and online at Brown Paper Tickets


Kepler’s is thrilled to bring journalist Julian Guthrie and special guests to celebrate the publication of How to Make a Spaceship.

This exhilarating story chronicles the $10 million Ansari XPRISE offered by entrepreneur and visionary Peter Diamandis for the first private craft to achieve suborbital spaceflight. In the 1990s, this achievement would have been science fiction. In her book, Guthrie chronicles the teams racing against time and technology to achieve one of the greatest entrepreneurial feats of our time: privately funded and designed space flight.

At the heart of the story is the team of renegades that launched the bullet-shaped SpaceShipOne and a saga that draws in larger-than-life characters like designers Dick and Burt Rutan, test pilot Mike Melvill, aviation legacy Erik Lindbergh and mad geniuses like John Carmack and Elon Musk. If you loved Rocket Boys, The Right Stuff, The Martian and other stories of steely-eyed missile men, you won’t want to miss this high-flying event.

Julian Guthrie is an award-winning journalist who spent twenty years at the San Francisco Chronicle. In addition to How to Make a Spaceship she is the author of The Grace of Everyday Saints, based on her Pulitzer Prize-nominated series of articles, and The Billionaire and the Mechanic, a bestselling account of Oracle CEO Larry Ellison’s pursuit of the America’s Cup.


Credit: Brett Hall Jones


PREMIER EVENT: The Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy 2016 featuring John Joseph Adams, Karen Joy Fowler, Charlie Jane Anders and Liz Ziemska

Tuesday, October 4, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016

Tickets are available at Kepler's and online at Brown Paper Tickets


Come back to the future with the premier annual showcase for the country’s finest science fiction and fantasy when the editors and authors included in this year’s Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy visit Kepler’s Books.

This year’s guest editor is Karen Joy Fowler, the Nebula and World Fantasy Award-winning author of We Are All Completely Besides Ourselves. She worked with series editor John Joseph Adams to select twenty or so phenomenal pieces of science fiction and fantasy to publish. Featuring writers with deep science fiction and fantasy backgrounds alongside writers who are infusing traditional fiction with speculative elements, these stories ask big questions about the future, starting with “What if?”

Joining Karen Joy Fowler and John Joseph Adams will be popular sci-fi novelist Charlie Jane Anders, author of All The Birds in the Sky, and acclaimed short story writer Elizabeth Ziemska.


Shilpi Somaya Gowda

Monday, October 17, 7:30 p.m.

The Golden Son



You may know Shilpi from her New York Times bestselling debut, Secret Daughter, which has sold more than a million copies worldwide in over 30 countries and languages and is based on her time volunteering in an Indian orphanage. An advisor on the Children’s Defense Fund and a patron of Childhaven International, Shilpi holds an MBA from Stanford University.

Her second novel, The Golden Son, is about Anil Patel, the first of his family to go to college.  It is a story of family, responsibility, love, honor, tradition, and identity, in which two childhood friends—a young doctor and a newly married bride—must balance the expectations of their culture and their families with the desires of their own hearts.

Credit: Deborah Feingold


Premier Event: Jodi Picoult

Tuesday, October 18, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

Small Great Things

Fox Theatre, 2215 Broadway, Redwood City

Ticketing information coming soon.


Jodi Picoult needs no introduction… she’s the #1 New York Times bestselling author of twenty-three novels, including Leaving TimeThe StorytellerLone WolfBetween the LinesSing You HomeHouse RulesHandle with CareChange of HeartNineteen Minutes, and My Sister’s Keeper.

Every book Jodi writes is impeccably researched and plotted, and she appeals to everyone - the uber-literary, the dedicated book club reader, the college student, the fellow writer, and the young adult. 

Small Great Things is perhaps even more stunning than the rest, complete with her characteristic page-turning plot and gripping moral dilemma at the heart of her characters’ actions.  In the novel, Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse with more than twenty years’ experience and during a routine shift, a newborn who she has been forbidden to touch (the newborn’s parents are white supremacists and ask the hospital to assign a nurse other than Ruth, who is African American), goes into cardiac arrest. Does Ruth obey orders or does she intervene?

In Small Great Things, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion—and doesn’t offer easy answers. 

Credit: Gordon Whiting


A Special Evening Edition of In Deep with Angie Coiro featuring Peter P. Marra and Chris Santella

Thursday, October 20, 2016, 7:30  p.m. 

Cat Wars: The Devastating Consequences of a Cuddly Killer



Are you a cat owner? Do your cats roam freely outside? Does your soft heart lead you to feed stray kitties? 
Mounting scientific evidence confirms what conservationists have long suspected: in the US alone, free-ranging cats both owned and feral are killing birds and other animals by the billions. 
Angie Coiro, host of In Deep Radio, talks to scientists and bird experts Peter P. Marra and Chris Santella about the very controversial and hot topic of the threats free-ranging cats pose to biodiversity and public health throughout the world. Hear the controversies surrounding the management of the explosion of these cat populations. Join the debate and see what happens behind the scenes of a radio show, with questions and comments from you, the live audience.
As controversial as smoking and climate change, these "cat wars" pit advocates of “trap/neuter/release” programs for ferals against backers of stronger, faster measures. Even supporters of mass euthanasia battle over methodology: carbon monoxide? Lethal injections? Wisconsin lawmakers in 2005 considered legalizing the shooting of feral cats by hunters and landowners. While that measure failed, hunting has joined baiting and even poison-dispensing robots as approved eradication methods in Australia.
In Cat Wars, Chris and Peter paint an intricate picture of a complex global problem. Their proposed solutions foresee a time when wildlife and humans are no longer vulnerable to the impacts of free-ranging cats. But they will not be without controversy.
Peter P. Marra has written more than 175 scientific publications, is the coeditor of Birds of Two Worlds, and directs the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center. Chris Santella is the author of many books, including the "Fifty Places" travel and outdoor series and The Tug Is the Drug









David Bodanis

Wednesday, October 26, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

Einstein's Greatest Mistake



Our cultural fascination with Albert Einstein is endless. From his portrayals in popular culture to the reverberations of his discoveries on theoretical physics and the philosophy of science, Einstein remains one of the most influential and yet accessible geniuses of our time.
Now from David Bodanis, the New York Times-bestselling author of E=mc2, comes Einstein’s Greatest Mistake, a page-turner of a biography that reveals the genius and hubris of this titan of modern physics. Here, Bodanis reveals the private Einstein, demonstrating how the scientist’s imagination and self confidence drove him to understand the very fabric of the universe. But later, as newer revelations in the field of quantum unfolded, Einstein’s conviction in his own power of intuition proved to be both his greatest strength and his ultimate undoing. Come hear one of the world’s finest science writers discuss how much we owe Einstein today, and how much more he might have achieved if not for his all-too-human flaws.
As a futurist and business advisor, David Bodanis has modelled economic futures and advised the future planning unit at the World Economic Forum. A keen kickboxer, Bodanis is a regular at Paragon Gym in Shoreditch, London, where he trains with his champion kickboxing brothers.




PREMIER EVENT: Lawrence Levy

Tuesday, November 1, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

To Pixar and Beyond: My Unlikely Journey with Steve Jobs to Make Entertainment History

Tickets are available at Kepler's and online at Brown Paper Tickets


The never-before-told story of Pixar's improbable success.

“Hi, Lawrence?” the caller asked. “This is Steve Jobs. I saw your picture in a magazine a few years ago and thought we’d work together someday.”

After Steve Jobs was unceremoniously dismissed from Apple, he turned his attention to a little-known graphics art company that he owned called Pixar. Out of the blue, he tracked down Harvard-trained Silicon Valley attorney, Lawrence Levy, to help him get Pixar on the right track. Working closely with Jobs and the entire Pixar team, Levy helped produce a highly improbably roadmap that transformed the sleepy graphic art studio into one of Hollywood’s greatest success stories and one of the most prolific and profitable entertainment studios in modern history. 

After giving a talk about his experiences at Harvard, Levy was encouraged by Lisa Brennan-Jobs (Steve Jobs’ daughter) to write this book. Come hear the inside scoop on how a tiny animation studio was transformed into an Academy Award-winning, multibillion dollar empire from a leader who witnessed the events with his own eyes.

Lawrence Levy later left corporate life to study Eastern philosophy and meditation and their relevance to modern life. He lives in Palo Alto.

Credit: Jay Blakesberg

Lori Ostlund and Anne Raeff in conversation with Jan Ellison

Thursday, November 10, 2016, 7:30  p.m. 

After the Parade by Lori Ostlund

The Jungle Around Us: Stories by Anne Raeff



Join us for an evening with two Flannery O'Connor prize winners as they are interviewed by the author of one of the most popular debuts of 2015. Jan Ellison, author of A Small Indiscretion, will lead what's sure to be a deep and engaging discussion between Anne Raeff, author of the upcoming collection The Jungle Around Us, and Lori Ostlund, author of the incredibly well received After the Parade.   
Though very different, both books deal with issues and emotions important to today: embracing the world though the world contains everything we fear; displacement and private grief made public; how we grow up and move on; and how we can change our deepest wounds into our greatest strengths.  

This much talent and depth in the room - with authors loved by Richard Russo; Hanya Yanighara, bestselling author of A Little Life; Yiyun Li; Ann Packer; Emma Donoghue; and more -  guarantees nothing short of an unforgettable evening.