Paul Yamazaki

Long time book buyer at City Lights Bookstore in conversation with Stephen Sparks
Paul Yamazaki Stephen Sparks City Lights Bookstore Point Reyes Books Ode Books
Saturday, May 18, 2024 - 4:00pm
Dance Palace Church Space
503 B St.
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956


Free, no registration required

Paul Yamazaki, who has been the principal buyer at City Lights Bookstore for over fifty years, joins Stephen Sparks for a conversation about Reading the Room: A Bookseller's Tale (Ode Books).

"A wry, stirring, profoundly uplifting ode to bookselling––complete with riffs on capitalism, San Francisco, jazz, even the meaning of life––from one of the underappreciated literary titans of our time." — Hua Hsu, author of Stay True: A Memoir

"Paul Yamazaki is one of the greatest and most influential readers in the world. [This volume] reminds us that reading is an act of imagination, defiance, optimism and love. Paul brings the whole of his being to the world of books. May we all learn to do the same." — Katie Kitamura, author of Intimacies and A Separation

This is a free event. No registration required.

About Reading the Room

Reading the Room is Paul Yamazaki's love letter to the work of bookselling and an engaged life of the mind.

Over twenty-four hours, Paul Yamazaki leads us through the stacks of storied City Lights Booksellers in San Francisco; the care and prowess of his approach to book buying; his upbringing in a Japanese American family in Southern California and moving to San Francisco at the height of revolutionary foment; working with legendary figures in the book publishing industry like Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Sonny Mehta, and others; and his vision for the future of bookselling. Navigating building trust with readers and nurturing relationships across the literary industry, Yamazaki testifies to the value of generosity, sharing knowledge, and dialogue in a life devoted to books.

About Paul Yamazaki

Paul Yamazaki has been the principal buyer at City Lights Booksellers, the legendary San Francisco bookstore and publisher founded by Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Peter Martin, for more than fifty years. A champion for national and global literature, writers, publishers, and independent bookstores, Yamazaki was the recipient of the National Book Foundation's 2023 Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community. He has mentored generations of booksellers across America.

Reading the Room: A Bookseller's Tale By Paul Yamazaki, Rick Simonson (Foreword by) Cover Image
By Paul Yamazaki, Rick Simonson (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9781958846698
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ode Books - May 8th, 2024