Ebook membership explores Octavia E. Butler’s worlds

Good morning, welcome to the LA Times Book Club.

Growing up in Pasadena, science fiction writer Octavia E. Butler boarded buses everywhere and always wrote about foreign ideas and aspirations to become a writer in savings books, diaries and envelopes.

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“Octavia E. Butler did not ask to stay here, she probably wouldn’t have done it if she had a tire, but she did. Pasadena. Crown of the Valley. Earth,” writes journalist Lynell George in a new book examining a child’s actions and writings.

After working as a telemarketer, potato controller and laundryman, Butler began his career as a writer, distributing 12 books and short donations. He received two Nebulas and two Hugo and became the first fictional writer to win the title of MacArthur “genius”.

On Wednesday, George, author of “Little Hand, Full of Sunshine: The World of Octavia E. Butler,” and metro journalist Julia Wick, our Essential California correspondent, joined the Los Angeles Times Book Club to discuss Butler’s work and his eternal inheritance.

Butler’s 1993 “Sow Illustration” was based on the devastating Los Angeles climate change and the economic downturn in which people are simply living. The author died in 2006 but his book has been popular for recent months. The “Sower’s Parable” reached out to both the Los Angeles Times and the New York Times best-seller list for this fall.

Butler’s other two books, “Wild Seed” and “Dawn,” make TV appearances.

Lynell George is the author of “The Little Hand of the World, the Whole Hand of the World: The World of Octavia E. Butler.”

(Noé Montes / Angel City Press)

Book donations

Club club meetup begins at 7 pm PT on November 18 and will be shared on the LA LA Facebook page, YouTube and Twitter. Sign up for Eventbrite for a reminder and a direct connection. This event is free.

This month, we present our first club gift. If you sign up for the event, you can receive a free copy of one of the 10 books written by Butler or another sci-fi major – for a generous donation from the author.

The books will be sent to read club readers on their first visit, from Bookrore of Vroman.

“Vroman was an Octavia bookstore for the rest of his life, expressing appreciation for the important work he is doing in LA, Octavia E. Butler’s Estate and longtime writer Merrilee Heifetz is donating money to buy 700 of these books for distribution,” he said. Ernestine Walker, Butler’s cousin.

“In choosing all the black writers’ novels, many of which honor Octavia for paving the way, we would also like to thank its readers for giving away their five free books. We also thank LA Times for all they have done to support and support the event.”

On the donor list are five books by Butler, “Kindred,” “The Parable of the Sower,” “The Parable of the Talent,” “The Wild Seed” and “Fledgling.” It also includes “The Dark Ages: 100 Years of Myths From African Diaspora,” by Sheree R. Thomas; “Daughter: The Whole Trilogy” by Nnedi Okorafor; “The Grace of the Spirits” by Solomon’s Rivers; “Pet” author Akwaeke Emezi; and “Until the Next Month?” and NK Jemisin.

Books by black fiction writers including Octavia Butler, Rivers Solomon and NK Jemisin.

(Grand Central Publishing, Beacon Press, Aspect, DAW, Akashic Books, Make Me a World, Orbit)

Last month clubbers have been reading and sharing Octavia Butler’s stories.

Most readers like it. Mine may be “The Parable of the Sower”; I’m fascinated by dystopian LA’s 2020s, even though I’m still working on his books.

My friend Tracy Brown is a fan of “Dawn,” the first book from the Xenogenesis / Lilith’s Brood series. “It’s a lot harder than some of the other things, but it was her first book I read and I still love it, because it covers so many topics through relationships / conversations,” Tracy says. “These two issues are also about what people can do about it, which seems to be important so far.”

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Hurry up with our Essential California story from journalist Julia Wick, who discusses Octavia E. Butler’s legacy at our event on November 18th.

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Mayor Cooley, who reads the book, admits: “I just finished ‘Dawn,’ so I have to say that I really like it. The idea of ​​repeating Eve and Mitochondrial Eve’s initial stories with a Black woman is impossible. ”

Tracy adds that the first job she read with Butler was “Bloodchild” and that a brief contribution is a good gateway to some of her work.

Several other readers shared their love for “Kindred,” one of Butler’s best-known books. “It made me think so much,” says Anna Elves of the club’s Facebook group.

Teacher Lisa Vasquez says she has been sharing “Family” with her students since 1995. “Butler spends a lot of time teaching her readers about the dangers of slavery,” she says.

But the author of “Little Hand” has a hard time deciding what he likes after spending a long time immersed in Butler’s archives at Huntington’s Library.

George’s new book includes essays and lists written by the author, comments from early teachers and detailed notes of his or her difficulties in living a writer’s life. Butler wrote: “The biggest hurdle I had to overcome was my fear and self-doubt.”

During interviews and conferences, people often ask Butler: What does science fiction mean to you?

“He has responded in many ways over the years,” George writes in these words in his book. “Science fiction allowed him to achieve more than he could ever imagine. Reading Octavia’s writings was difficult, I was intrigued by some of the answers. Scientific fiction is… a small earth and a hand-filled universe with everything round and in the middle. ”

What questions do you have for our booksellers? Email us ahead of Wednesday’s meeting at [email protected]

Manuscripts on the inside cover of one of Octavia E. Butler's novels, 1988.

Manuscripts on the inside cover of one of Octavia E. Butler’s novels, 1988.

(© Octavia E. Butler’s Place)

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