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From the Watts Towers in Los Angeles to the Forbidden City in Beijing, Geoff Dyer’s newest collection of essays, White Sands: Experiences from the Outside World, explores what defines place: where do we come from, what are we, where are we going? The elegant, witty, and always inquisitive Dyer returns to ALOUD to reflect on his unexpected findings with Jonathan Lethem — celebrated for his novels, essays, and short stories — to illuminate the questions we ask when we step outside ourselves.

Geoff Dyer

A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Geoff Dyer has received the Somerset Maugham Prize, the E. M. Forster Award, a Lannon Literary Fellowship, a National Book Critics Circle Award for criticism, and, in 2015, the Windham Campbell Prize for nonfiction. The author of four novels and nine works of non-fiction, Dyer is writer-in-residence at the University of Southern California and lives in Los Angeles. His books have been translated into twenty-four languages.


Jonathan Lethem

Jonathan Lethem is the author of Dissident Gardens and eight earlier novels, including Girl In Landscape and Chronic City. His writing has been translated into over thirty languages. He lives in Los Angeles and Maine.


Reservation Policy for Free Programs:
As most ALOUD at Central Library programs are free of charge, it is our policy to overbook. In the case of a FULL program your free reservation may not guarantee admission. We recommend arriving early. Space permitting, unclaimed reservations will be released to standby patrons at approximately 7 PM.

 

Standby Policy:
Standby numbers are distributed in person only one hour before the program, on a first-come, first-served, basis. There is no advance wait list for full programs. Standby patrons will be admitted subject to availability. Most programs will be available via podcast.

 

Book Signing Policy:
ALOUD is one of many free programs at the Los Angeles Public Library made possible by the Library Foundation of Los Angeles. Most ALOUD author programs are followed by book signings. At least one copy of the author’s book must be purchased from The Library Store in order to participate in any post-program book signing, and you will be asked to show proof of purchase. Please be prepared to show your proof of purchase when you enter the book signing line. Proceeds support the Los Angeles Public Library.

 

Main image: Geoff Dyer at Spiral Jetty, the earthwork sculpture by Robert Smithson  Credit: Photo taken from White Sands: Experiences from the Outside World by Geoff Dyer


Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the reservation policy for ALOUD?

    As most ALOUD at Central Library programs are free of charge, it is our policy to overbook. In the case of a FULL program your free reservation may not guarantee admission. We recommend arriving early. Space permitting, unclaimed reservations will be released to standby patrons at 7 PM.

  • Why do programs fill so quickly?

    ALOUD provides a unique experience for the public to engage with scholars, authors, and artists in the intimate 235-seat Mark Taper Auditorium. Library Foundation Members have the benefit of reserving for programs in advance of the public. Consider joining as a Member to receive this benefit, and check the website on an on-going basis for program availability. Be sure to subscribe to our email alerts, and visit our Media Archive for podcasts and other items from our recent programs.

  • Where does ALOUD take place?

    Unless otherwise noted, ALOUD programs are held at the downtown Central Library’s Mark Taper Auditorium.

  • Where should I park for ALOUD programs?

    We recommend taking public transportation. Parking for the Central Library is at the Westlawn Garage at 524 S. Flower Street. For more information, visit the Library’s website.

  • Should I purchase the author’s book in advance?

    We encourage you to purchase books from the Library Store. All proceeds benefit the Los Angeles Public Library. Books are made available for purchase when you reserve for a program online, and are also on sale at programs. In order to participate in the book signing, you must purchase at least one book from The Library Store. Members receive discounts on purchases.


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