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Books, Etcetera with Lynn Carey: Andrew Sean Greer

Author of "The Confessions of Max Tivoli" coming to Rakestraw Books in Danville Tuesday.

The amazing Andrew Sean Greer is coming to a bookstore near you soon, and he’s not to be missed. He’s smart, funny, handsome and he writes great books—his best known is probably The Confessions of Max Tivoli and his most recent is The Story of a Marriage, which I loved.

I liked The Confessions of Max Tivoli but must confess … I don’t do well with people aging backwards and the like. I don’t do well with time travel either; reading The Time Traveler’s Wife, I thought my head was about to explode. I felt better when the very smart author Mary Pols told me she’d needed a graph on paper when she read it.

The Story of a Marriage takes place in San Francisco’s Sunset District in the 1950s. It’s amazing how far we’ve come in almost 60 years. At least now, I’d like to think that if a wife had questions, she’d actually ask her husband for answers!

I’ve met Andy a few times, and tried to meet up with him for an interview a few months ago. Then he zipped over to Italy, then went to New York and got some kind of hideous food poisoning. We finally chatted on the phone shortly after he moved back to San Francisco after a year in NYC on a fellowship.

One thing I’m always in awe of with authors is how they discipline themselves to write. Most do write every day. Here’s what Andy does: He goes to the gym (another thing most of us have difficulty with), then goes to the basement of a friend’s house which he rents out as his office. There is a couch. There are assorted books. There is a computer on which he writes, but … there is no internet service. That’s the trick, I think. No emails. No Facebook. But I wonder how he researches … ah well, I’ll ask him next time!

Andy will be at Rakestraw Books in Danville Tuesday evening Aug. 18th at 7 p.m.

Another doozy of an author at Rakestraw is this Friday, at 7 p.m.; Senator Barbara Boxer will be there to talk about her second novel, the juicy-sounding “Blind Trust.” But I’ll bet she’ll answer other questions you may have!

Rakestraw Books, 522 Hartz Ave, Danville, (925) 837-7337, rakestrawbooks.com.
For 12 years, Lynn Carey has run the Times Book Club, which now appears in the Contra Costa Times and Oakland Tribune newspapers. For the past 17 years, she's lived in Lafayette with her husband, Lamorinda Sun columnist Mike Zampa, and their two teenagers.