Sarah Vowell (author and voice actor of Violet Parr from The Incredibles) debuts her new book “Lafayette in the Somewhat United States” at Bookshop Santa Cruz on Saturday, October 24, 2015 from 7:00 – 9:00 PM!
Sarah Vowell’s newest book is a humorous and insightful account of the Revolutionary War hero Marquis de Lafayette—the one Frenchman we could all agree on—and an insightful portrait of a nation’s idealism and its reality.
On August 16, 1824, an elderly French gentleman sailed into New York Harbor and giddy Americans were there to welcome him. Or, rather, to welcome him back. It had been thirty years since the Revolutionary War hero the Marquis de Lafayette had last set foot in the United States, and he was so beloved that 80,000 people showed up to cheer for him. The entire population of New York at the time was 120,000.
Lafayette’s arrival in 1824 coincided with one of the most contentious presidential elections in American history, Congress had just fought its first epic battle over slavery, and the threat of a Civil War loomed. But Lafayette, belonging to neither North nor South, to no political party or faction, was a walking, talking reminder of the sacrifices and bravery of the revolutionary generation and what they wanted this country to be. His return was not just a reunion with his beloved Americans, it was a reunion for Americans with their own astonishing singular past. Lafayette in the Somewhat United States is a portrait of the famed Frenchman, the impact he had on our young country, and his ongoing relationship with some of the instrumental Americans of the time, including George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, and many more.
Sarah Vowell is the New York Times’ bestselling author of six nonfiction books on American history and culture, including Unfamiliar Fishes, The Wordy Shipmates, and Assassination Vacation. Vowell was one of the original contributors to McSweeney’s, participating in many of the quarterly’s readings and shows, and has been a columnist for Salon.com, Time, San Francisco Weekly, and the New York Times. She was a frequent contributor to This American Life and has made numerous appearances on the Late Show with David Letterman, Late Night with Conan O’Brien and the Daily Show with Jon Stewart. She voiced teen superhero Violet Parr in Brad Bird’s Academy Award-winning The Incredibles. Vowell was the president of the board of 826NYC, a nonprofit tutoring and writing center for students aged 6-18 in Brooklyn, from its founding in 2004 until 2014.
Important signing line details:
Priority signing line vouchers are available with book purchase. Attendees may reserve a spot in the signing line by pre-ordering a copy of Lafayette in the Somewhat United States from Bookshop Santa Cruz before the event (in store or online). At the signing, voucher holders will be called up to enter signing line according to the number on their voucher.
Bookshop Santa Cruz
1520 Pacific Avenue Santa Cruz, CA 95060