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Debuts of Summer

Bookshop Santa Cruz has an exciting line-up of debut authors appearing at the store this season—brand new voices who are already making a mark on the literary world. Join us at our Debuts of Summer events and receive an exclusive button, designed by Bookshop, to commemorate each writer’s appearance. You only get one chance to meet a debut author! 


Monday, June 18th, at 7:00 pm  
Tommy Orange, There There

The first event in our Debuts of Summer series will feature Tommy Orange sharing his highly-acclaimed debut novel, There There. Fierce, angry, funny, groundbreaking—Orange’s first novel is a wondrous and shattering portrait of an America few of us have ever seen. Not since Louise Erdrich has such a powerful and urgent Native American voice exploded onto the landscape of contemporary fiction. There There introduces a brilliant new author at the start of a major career.

“An astonishing literary debut!” —Margaret Atwood

“Welcome to a brilliant and generous artist who has already enlarged the landscape of American Fiction. There There is a comic vision haunted by profound sadness. Tommy Orange is a new writer with an old heart.” —Louise Erdrich


Wednesday, July 11th, at 7:00 pm
Aja Gabel, The Ensemble
In conversation with Chloe Benjamin, author of The Immortalists

"Sweeping, romantic, elegiac, The Ensemble gives you the feeling of being inside the music of a quartet, a look into the relationships under the music, the love and heartbreak, set against their ruthless commitment to both their art, and to each other. Aja Gabel is a phenomenon." —Alexander Chee, author of How to Write an Autobiographical Novel


Thursday, August 9th, at 7:00 pm
Katharine Dion, The Dependents
In conversation with Elizabeth McKenzie, author of The Portable Veblen

"When this book arrived in the mail, its author, Katharine Dion, was a person unknown to me. Not anymore. The Dependents is a fine debut, full of intelligent writing and free of the canine desire to please that afflicts so much contemporary writing. And yet this book pleases on many levels. I will look for Ms. Dion's work in the future." —Jeffrey Eugenides, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Middlesex and The Marriage Plot


Monday, August 13th, at 7:00 pm 
Paula Saunders, The Distance Home

"Paula Saunders has given us a riveting family saga for the ages. The Distance Home is fresh, with a seductive Midwestern innocence, though the book's outwardly ideal clan holds dark secrets that kept me turning pages into the wee hours. This is one of the best books I've read in years--destined to become a classic." —Mary Karr


Thursday, August 30th, at 7:00 pm
Lisa Locascio, Open Me

"Locascio’s story of a young American abroad is unflinching in its portrayal of sex, desire, racism, and the excitement and confusion of youth. Infused with erotics and politics, this is a novel that will haunt you.” —Viet Thanh Nguyen, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sympathizer


Each of these authors will appear at Bookshop Santa Cruz to talk about their buzzed-about debut novels. We are creating a collectible button to commemorate each of their debuts, which will be handed out exclusively at their Bookshop events. Join us this summer to meet these fantastic authors, find out why we're so excited about their new novels, and collect all the buttons!



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