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Acclaimed author Dave Eggers will be joined on the ALOUD stage by the fascinating subject of his newest book. The Monk of Mokha is the true story of Mokhtar Alkhanshali, an ambitious young Muslim man who was raised in the coffee-loving city of San Francisco and became fascinated by the rich history of coffee. When he travels to his ancestral home of Yemen with the hopes of resurrecting the ancient art of Yemeni coffee, he’s on the brink of success just as the country becomes engulfed in civil war. Join us for a special blend of storytelling as Eggers discusses this heart-pounding work that weaves together biography, a history of the hot commodity of coffee, global conflict, and the high stakes of chasing the American dream.

Dave Eggers

Dave Eggers is the author of eleven books, including: The Circle; Heroes of the Frontier;  A Hologram for the King, a finalist for the National Book Award; and What Is the What,  winner of France’s Prix Médicis Etranger and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. His nonfiction and journalism has appeared in the Guardian, the New Yorker, the Best American Travel Writing and the Best American Essays. He is the founder of McSweeney’s, the publishing company that distributes the Voice of Witness series of books, which use oral history to illuminate human rights crises around the world. He is the cofounder of 826 National, a network of youth writing and tutoring centers with locations around the country, and of Scholar Match, which connects donors with students to make college accessible. His work has been translated into forty-two languages. He lives in Northern California with his family.


Mokhtar Alkhanshali

Mokhtar Alkhanshali grew up between Brooklyn, San Francisco and Yemen. Mokhtar comes from an ancient lineage of coffee farmers, that traces back to when the world’s first coffee was cultivated in his home province of Ibb over five centuries ago.

Mokhtar is the first licensed Q grader (coffee sommelier) from Yemen and made international news in March 2015 when he escaped war-torn Yemen on a fishing boat with his coffee samples. Mokhtar strives to empower coffee farmers with the knowledge and tools to bring about radical improvements in the quality of their coffees and lives.


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: Port of Mokha


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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