Vroman’s Live

Bookstore boasts stellar lineup for December

By Arroyo Staff

The renowned bookstore Vroman’s is hosting more top-notch virtual programs throughout December.

The “Vroman’s Live” events are held virtually through Crowdcast. Register through vromansbookstore.com.

All “Vroman’s Presents” events are ticketed and will be held in-person offsite and will have COVID-19 event safety guidelines that need to be followed attend. 

Anyone with questions is asked to email email@vromansbookstore.com.

Lorne M. Buchman discusses “Make to Know: From Spaces of Uncertainty to Creative Discovery”

6 p.m. Thursday, December 2

The creative process is winding. It involves entertaining uncertainty and improvising new paths to knowing. In this book, Lorne M. Buchman, an international leader in art and design education and president of ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena, guides readers through stories of a diverse group of artists, entrepreneurs, innovators, and designers. 

Including such luminaries as Yves Béhar, Chris Kraus, Zack Snyder, Paula Scher and Frank Gehry and businesses like Apple and Tesla who have changed the world as we know it, Buchman focuses on the revelatory nature of the creative journey itself.

Michelangelo is said to have seen the angel in the stone and carved away until he set him free. “Make to Know” is about making as a path to knowing — presenting creativity as a “carving away” toward a revelation, not as a fully formed epiphany gleaned from a mysterious ether. 

As Buchman reveals throughout this provocative book, uncertainty is the space where discovery happens and where creators can be both playful and imaginative. 

Vroman’s Local Author Day featuring Robert Smith

Robert Smith presents “Journaling Memories”

6 p.m. Monday, December 6

“Journaling Memories” is a self-help workbook process intended to encourage seniors and others to chronicle the most relevant experiences, thoughts and feelings of their life. The process’ central component is to guide the user in recalling and journaling significant aspects of their life.  

The book guides the user by organizing life milestones and stimulating thought through over 350 questions. 

Van Hoang, in conversation with Katie Zhao, discusses “Girl Giant and the Jade War”

5 p.m. Tuesday, December 7

In this sequel to “Girl Giant and the Monkey King,” Thom and her friends set off on a far-flung adventure to save the Heavens and the Jade Emperor from certain destruction.

Thom Ngoh thought the Monkey King was her friend. He taught her to control her super strength and to stand up for herself. But, really, he was just using her. He tricked her into stealing from the Heavens and releasing him from his 500-year prison. Now the Monkey King is waging a war against the Heavens and Thom must do everything in her power to fix the mess she made.

Determined to prevent a war, Thom and her dragon friend, Kha, set off on an adventure across the Heavens to search for allies. But with the stakes higher than ever, the price for help may be more than Thom is willing to pay.

This richly woven middle-grade fantasy series is full of humor, magic, and heart, and will appeal to readers who love Roshani Chokshi and Sayantani DasGupta. 

Kiley Roache & Chloe Gong present “Killer Content” and “Our Violent Ends”

6 p.m. Thursday, December 9

In “Killer Content,” the six teenagers who make up the Lit Lair have it made. A beachfront mansion, millions of followers, stunning good looks, and sponsorship deals worth more money than they ever dreamed. They live together, making videos about their perfect lives.

Except it’s not so perfect after one of them turns up dead in the infinity pool. When the group TikTok account starts posting cryptic messages, the police stop looking outside the house for suspects — and start looking straight at them. Everyone in the Lit Lair had reasons why their lives would have been easier without Sydney Reynolds. But only one of them killed her.

Underlined is a line of totally addictive romance, thriller and horror titles coming to you fast and furious each month. 

In “Our Violent Ends,” the year is 1927, and Shanghai teeters on the edge of revolution.

After sacrificing her relationship with Roma to protect him from the blood feud, Juliette has been a girl on a mission. One wrong move, and her cousin will step in to usurp her place as the Scarlet Gang’s heir. The only way to save the boy she loves from the wrath of the Scarlets is to have him want her dead for murdering his best friend in cold blood. If Juliette was guilty of the crime Roma believes she committed, his rejection might sting less.

Roma is still reeling from Marshall’s death, and his cousin Benedikt will barely speak to him. Roma knows it’s his fault for letting the ruthless Juliette back into his life, and he’s determined to set things right — even if that means killing the girl he hates and loves with equal measure.

Then a new monstrous danger emerges in the city, and though secrets keep them apart, Juliette must secure Roma’s cooperation if they are to end this threat once and for all. Shanghai is already at a boiling point: The Nationalists are marching in, whispers of civil war brew louder every day, and gangster rule faces complete annihilation. Roma and Juliette must put aside their differences to combat monsters and politics, but they aren’t prepared for the biggest threat of all: protecting their hearts from each other. 

Matt Coyle, in conversation with Naomi Hirahara, discusses “Last Redemption”

6 p.m. Tuesday, December 14

Will Rick Cahill survive an insidious disease long enough to see his first-born child — or will sadistic killers murder him first?

Rick is finally living a settled, happy life. His fiancée, Leah Landingham, is pregnant with their first child and he is doing PI work that pays well and keeps him out of danger. Then a doctor gives him the bad news about the headaches he’s been suffering — CTE, the pro football disease that leads to senility and early death — a secret he keeps from Leah and his best friend Moira MacFarlane.

When Moira asks him to monitor her son, Luke — who’s broken a restraining order to stay away from his girlfriend — a simple surveillance explodes into greed, deceit and murder. Luke goes missing, and Rick’s dogged determination compels him to follow clues that lead to the exploration of high finance and DNA cancer research.

Ultimately, Rick is forced to battle sadistic killers as he tries to find Luke and stay alive long enough to see the birth of his child. 

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