Silicon Valley Reads 2014 Books Focus on Literacy, Technology

Free kick-off event begins at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22 at the Campbell Heritage Theater, 1 W Campbell Ave.

Nicholas Carr is the author of 'The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing To Our Brains' and Robin Sloan is the author of 'Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore.' Courtesy SV Reads 2014
Nicholas Carr is the author of 'The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing To Our Brains' and Robin Sloan is the author of 'Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore.' Courtesy SV Reads 2014

—Submitted by Silicon Valley Reads 2014

Silicon Valley Reads 2014 kicks off Wednesday, Jan. 22, when the authors of this year’s two featured books are interviewed byMercury News columnist Mike Cassidy about the theme “Books & Technology: Friends or Foes?” 

The free event begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Campbell Heritage Theater.

It is the first of dozen of events in Santa Clara County for Nicholas Carr, author of The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing To Our Brains and Robin Sloan, author of Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore.

The authors will appear at public libraries, schools and community centers between the kick off and the closing event on March 30 at 1:30 p.m. at Cupertino Community Hall, the only other time they will be on stage together.

Silicon Valley Reads will offer 140 free public events in 13 cities throughout Santa Clara County, including films, panel discussions, book groups, and activities for children and families.  

The complete schedule of events is listed on the website SiliconValleyReads.org.

“Digital devices are now the centerpiece of how we gather information and communicate. ‘Book’ is being redefined, and no one can accurately predict how these technology innovations will help or hinder literacy, writing, publishing, and creativity,” said Diane McNutt, Silicon Valley Reads coordinator, who is also a Los Gatos Town Council member. “It is a provocative topic that will engage the community in reading, thinking and sharing different perspectives.”

Special events for Silicon Valley Reads 2014 include:

  • Silicon Valley Reads Day at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View on Saturday, Feb. 15, including free admission to the museum’s galleries, a panel discussion on “The e-Book Revolution” and an exclusive showing of the award winning documentary “Google and the World Brain.”
  • An art exhibit titled “Deep Reading” at the Euphrat Museum of Art at De Anza College Feb. 3-March 20 featuring paintings, tapestries, prints, animation and sculpture.
  • “Off The Page,” a program about the growing use of digital tools to create video poetry organized by Los Gatos Poet Laureate Erica Goss, on Thursday, Feb. 6 at the Visual & Performing Arts Center, De Anza College.  The event includes the premiere of a video version of “A Family Album of Silicon Valley,” a poem created by former Santa Clara County Poet Laureate Nils Peterson using 100 lines contributed by the public, narrated by community leaders and featuring images taken by Silicon Valley Community Newspaper staff photographers.
  • “Treasure In Your Bookshelf,” a talk about how to evaluate the worth of old books and how to take care of printed volumes to last for generations by Steven Yvaska, author of the “The Seasoned Collector” newspaper column.  It will be presented at four libraries in February and March.
  • A panel discussion at the Tech Museum on Thursday, March 27, at 6:30 p.m. on the theme “Unintended Consequences: Is Too Much Information, Too Fast, Too Much of a Good Thing?”  Panelists include Carr, Zack Lynch, author of The Neuro Revolution: How Brain Science Is Changing Our World, and Marilyn Walker, Ph.D., Professor of Computer Science at U.C. Santa Cruz.  It is moderated by Barbara Marshman, Editorial Page Editor, Mercury News.

The authors of all three children’s books selected for Silicon Valley Reads 2014 will also visit schools, public libraries and bookstores.

Chris Grabenstein, author of Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library, a fun adventure story for ages 8 and up, will be in town March 11-14.  

Bill Joyce and Joe Bluhm, author and illustrator of the beautiful picture book The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, are scheduled for events March 20-22.  

Todd Parr, author of Reading Makes You Feel Good for preschoolers, will be at public libraries Feb. 15-16 and March 8-9, and the first 40 families at each location will receive free copies of his book, compliments of FIRST 5 Santa Clara County.             

This is the 12th year of Silicon Valley Reads, presented by the Santa Clara County Library District, San Jose Public Library Foundation and Santa Clara County Office of Education.  

Funding comes from corporate, foundation and individual donors including these major sponsors in 2014: the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, The Michael and Alyce Parsons Foundation, Cupertino Library Foundation, Los Altos Library Endowment, Cisco, Pacific Library Partnership, Friends of Cupertino Library, Technology Credit Union, FIRST 5 Santa Clara County, and Fairmont Hotel San Jose.

Silicon Valley Reads is also supported by dozens of other businesses and community groups and media partners The Mercury News, Silicon Valley Community Newspapers, NBC Bay Area, KLIV, KRTY and KBAY.

For further information, visit the website SiliconValleyReads.org SVReads@aol.com.

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