Book Talk: Ruth Ozeki
One of our favorite writers, and human beings who are of the writerly persuasion, novelist, filmmaker, and Zen Buddhist priest Ruth Ozeki makes this most welcome in-person Seattle return for the paperback release of last year’s luminous novel, her fourth, The Book of Form and Emptiness (Penguin). We had a wonderful online launch for this book in hardcover – this scheduled in-person appearance should be even better. Ruth Ozeki is a presence. And her books, including The Book of Form and Emptiness: “[A] tale of sorrow, danger and tentative redemption serves as the springboard for extended meditations on the interdependence of all beings, the magic of books, the disastrous ecological and spiritual effects of unchecked consumerism and more . . . one of Ozeki’s gifts as a novelist is the ability to enfold provocative intellectual material within a human story grounded in sharply observed social detail . . . The Book itself has a marvelous voice: adult, ironic, affirming at every turn the importance of books as a repository of humanity’s deepest wisdom and highest aspirations.” — The Washington Post.
“[Ozeki] writes with bountiful insight, exuberant imagination, and levitating grace about psychic diversity, our complicated attitude toward our possessions, street protests, climate change, and such wonders as crows, the moon, and snow globes. Most inventively, Ozeki celebrates the profound relationship between reader and writer. This enthralling, poignant, funny, and mysterious saga, thrumming with grief and tenderness, beauty and compassion, offers much wisdom.” — Booklist.
“This compassionate novel of life, love and loss glows in the dark. Its strange, beautiful pages turn themselves. If you’ve lost your way with fiction over the last year or two, let The Book of Form and Emptiness light your way home.” — David Mitchell.
Co-presented by The Elliott Bay Book Company and Hugo House. The Book of Form and Emptiness is available for purchase Elliott Bay Book Company here.
Ruth Ozeki is a novelist, filmmaker, and Zen Buddhist priest, whose books have garnered international acclaim for their ability to integrate issues of science, technology, religion, environmental politics, and global pop culture into unique, hybrid, narrative forms.
Her new novel, The Book of Form and Emptiness, tells the story of a young boy who, after the death of his father, starts to hear voices and finds solace in the companionship of his very own book. The Book of Form and Emptiness has been shortlisted for the UK Women’s Prize for Fiction.
Her first two novels, My Year of Meats (1998) and All Over Creation (2003), have been translated into 11 languages and published in 14 countries. Her third novel, A Tale for the Time Being (2013), won the LA Times Book Prize, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and has been published in over thirty countries.
Her work of personal non-fiction, The Face: A Time Code (2016), was published by Restless Books as part of their groundbreaking series called The Face.