Home Brentwood Brentwood Literary Stroll Scheduled for April 3

Brentwood Literary Stroll Scheduled for April 3

Press Release

by ECT

The Brentwood Literary Stroll is scheduled for Sunday, April 3 from 1p.m. To 4p.m. Ten fiction and nonfiction authors will meet with participants at different restaurants and businesses throughout downtown Brentwood. Refreshments will be included.

There will be three children’s book authors located at the Brentwood Library Community Room. Children 12 and under can attend for free at the Library, 104 Oak Street in Brentwood. Bring your children to this wonderful opportunity to hear children’s stories right from the authors who wrote them.

Tickets are $5 per person and are available now. Go online to brentwoodlibrary.brownpapertickets.com. The day of the event, tickets will be exchanged for a wristband that will be your entrance into the different venues. Check-in tables will be located in front of the Brentwood Library, 104 Oak Street and also at the corner of Oak Street and First Street. Attendees can begin checking in at 12:30 p.m.

This event is presented by Friends of the Brentwood Library and supported with a grant from the City of Brentwood.

Participating Downtown Locations:

  • Brentwood Library
  • Chelsea Fusion
  • CoCo Wine Company
  • Corcoran Global Living
  • Dino’s Sandwich Shop
  • Harry’s Wine Depot & Tavern
  • La Fuente, Roadees Café
  • Sip and Scoo
  • VFW Brentwood and Zephyr’s.

Participating Authors:

Tamim Ansary was born in Kabul, Afghanistan in 1948, to an Afghan father and an American mother, and lived in Afghanistan until he was 16. Then he came to the United States to go to school and never went back. He spent the sixties and the early seventies in Portland, Oregon, part of a counterculture newspaper collective that published a weekly tabloid called The Scribe. He left the counterculture to join the Asia Foundation where he helped edit a bi-weekly publication about Asian culture and politics. From there, he drifted into textbook publishing, writing nonfiction books for children, writing a column for the learning site Encarta.com and. running the San Francisco Writers Foundation . Then came 9/11. The day after that event, he wrote a 900-word essay to some 20 friends, analyzing what had happened. That email went viral, reaching tens of millions within four days, and by the following Monday, his career had changed. Now he was delivering talks about Afghanistan, doing a radio show about Islamic history, and writing essays and books about Afghanistan and Islam.


Steven Burchik grew up in New York City and earned his bachelor’s degree from Manhattan College during the turbulent 1960s. He worked his way through school, including a stint at the New York Daily News, and remained active on campus–even starting a second student newspaper to provide an outlet for students to voice different views. After graduating, he entered the US Army at the peak of the Vietnam War. He trained at various bases in the U.S. then spent a year in the rice paddies northeast of Saigon in the role of a forward observer as a sergeant with the First Infantry Division. He later earned his MBA from Michigan State University and had a successful career as a marketing executive and entrepreneur in the food industry. Married with grown children, Burchik enjoys pursuing photography and sailing on San Francisco Bay. Compass and a Camera, his memoir of his Vietnam War experience, is his first book. He also published Focus on Vietnam.


Matthew Félix is an author and the Program Director and Host of the San Francisco Writers Conference Podcast. He also publishes and markets books for other authors. Publishers Weekly’s BookLife Prize called Matthew’s debut novel, A Voice Beyond Reason, “(a) highly crafted gem.” Matthew’s With Open Arms won four Solas Awards and has topped Amazon’s Africa and Morocco categories. Matthew was also awarded the $750 Solas Grand Prize for Story of the Year for his “The Citroën & the Pomegranate.” Matthew’s latest book, Porcelain Travels, won Gold for Humor in the 2019 Readers’ Favorite Awards and was a Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award finalist. Its stories were awarded Gold, Silver, and Bronze Solas Awards, as well as the First and Third Prizes in Humor in the 2020 Soul-Making Keats Literary Competition.


Joey Garcia’s poem, “After 9/11,” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and featured on Capital Public Radio. She has received poetry fellowships in Spoleto and Paris, an honorable mention in the Randall Jarrell International Poetry Prize (judged by Lucille Clifton), the Isadore Paiewonsky Poetry Prize, First Place in the Sacramento Public Library Poetry Contest, and First Place in the Artists Embassy International Poetry Contest. Her non-fiction book, “When Your Heart Breaks, It’s Opening to Love: Healing and finding love after an affair, heartbreak or divorce,” won a national Bronze Living Now award that recognizes books that inspire people to be more tolerant and forgiving. For more than 23 years, she has written a relationship advice column for the Sacramento News & Review newspaper.


Dan Hanel is the author of the historical mystery series, In the Shadow of Diablo that includes Mystery of the Great Stone House, Death at the Healing Waters and Ghosts of Black Diamond. He has been an educator for over 35 years as an award winning science teacher when he received the Eukel Teacher Trust award for outstanding teachers of Contra Costa County and was named the Distinguished High School Science Teacher for the State of California, and as an award winning school administrator serving at the high school, district, and county office levels. He grew up in Richmond, CA and received a degree in Biology from U.C., Berkeley and a Masters in Education from Cal State University, Hayward.


Carol A. Jensen is a native daughter and resident of eastern Contra Costa County, California. She is a history graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara. Carol delights in discovering the history of the California San Joaquin Delta, collecting early twentieth-century ephemera, and documenting the cultural history of the area from those who lived, farmed, recreated and visited the beautiful California Delta. The fruits of her historical search can be found at the East Contra Costa Historical Society & Museum, Knightsen, California. She is pleased to compile and edit an anthology of Ghost Stories from the East Contra Costa County communities. She is the author of many books about the local area.


Steven Kent Mirassou received his BA in American Literature from the George Washington University and his MA in Literature from NYU. He was born in the Salinas Valley and grew up in San Jose and Los Gatos before going east to college. Lineage: Life and Love and Six Generations in California Wine is his first book. Mirassou started his wine career in sales but found his true passion after moving into the production side of the business in 1996. Steven has made the highest rated wines from the Livermore Valley, is a founder of the Mount Diablo Highlands Wine Quality Alliance, and the President of the Livermore Valley Wine Growers Association.


Suzy Quenneville-Orpin, a Canadian born author has always had a vivid imagination and a keen desire to write. Suzy views the world through her own narrative, weaving in the fascinating challenges, triumphs, and lifestyles of the people she meets. An unapologetic daydreamer, Suzy’s early experiences in Toronto, Ontario and Woodland Beach, Ontario provided the perfect upbringing to fuel her creativity and discover the wonder of the roads less traveled. S.Q.Orpin’s Catwalk series begins in the glamorous but perilous Los Angeles world of modeling where characters struggle to find meaning in life and love. The story progresses through five books, delving into intricate, sometimes dark, areas of human existence and experiences through multiple points of view. Her companion books for this series feature amazing recipes from each story.


Sarah Sundin enjoys writing about the drama and romance of the World War II era. She is the bestselling author of Until Leaves Fall in Paris. Her best-selling novel When Twilight Breaks was a 2021 Christy Award finalist, The Land Beneath Us was a Christy Award finalist, The Sky Above Us won the 2020 Carol Award, and The Sea Before Us received the 2019 Reader’s Choice Award from Faith, Hope, and Love. Both When Tides Turn and Through Waters Deep were named to Booklist’s “101 Best Romances of the Last 10 Years,” Through Waters Deep received the 2016 INSPY Award and was a 2016 Carol Award Finalist, and her novella “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” in Where Treetops Glisten was a 2015 Carol Award Finalist.


Vicki L. Ward has authored several books designed to enlighten, inspire, and encourage women. Her book, Life’s Spices from Seasoned Sistahs, is an anthology showcasing the changing lives and experiences from the voice of mature women of color. Awards for this book include the ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Award, The Bronze Award from the Independent Publishers Association, and Best Anthology from the Los Angeles Black Book Expo. Continuing to focus on maturing women, she wrote Savvy, Sassy, and Bold after 50, a handbook for maturing women considering retirement. This book contains financial, health, and retirement strategies for women approaching midlife seeking vital economic lifestyle and retirement information. It garnered the Best Women’s Self Help Book Award from Bay Area Publishers and Authors, and an Honorable Mention from the Northern California Publishers and Authors. Vicki knows well the need for maturing women to gain perspective and supportive information as they begin retirement planning, which spawned the book Supercharge Your Life after 60, addressing dynamics for women 60 and beyond.


Children’s Book Authors:

Carolyn Joyce Dodds lives in Northern California where she has raised her two grown sons. She is a retired syndicated newspaper columnist and is now passionate about her role as a Special Education Teacher and Reading Specialist. Carolyn has an extensive background as a Behavior Modification Therapist, working with all ages of children and young adults on the autism spectrum. Tessa’s Tall Tales is the first in a long line of children’s books written by Carolyn. Tessa, the little wolf cub, has a fabulous imagination. She loves stories of exploration, adventure and fantasy! Her wide-eyed vision takes her parents, teacher, and classmates back in time and on to the future. But has Tessa gone too far with her tales? Tessa’s Tall Tales explores the range of exaggerated tales that we all enjoy while skating the edge between fact and fiction. Children will delight in Tessa’s stories while modern parents will see themselves as they encourage creativity without sanctioning misleading white lies. Children will particularly enjoy Tessa’s adventures on a treasure island, walking in space, and talking with the trees. Parents and caregivers will find this charming story an entry to discussing the values and virtues of truthfulness.

Claudia Hull has always been an avid reader. She spent many a hot summer day in her local air conditioned library. She passed this love of reading to her kids. While on family trips, she made up stories for bedtime. Her kids finally said, “Mom, you need to write these down!” So she did. She has published three books as of now. She has enjoyed managing the local elementary school libraries for several years. Reading and sharing stories is her passion.

Phelicia Lang is a native of California and has her roots in the Bay Area. She’s a wife, mother to four, grandmother to two, an author and a publisher. She has a Masters in Reading Leadership with a focus on Multicultural Literature. Her twenty years in education includes working for private, charter and public schools. She is currently a First Grade Teacher and sits on the board of Contra Costa Counties Local Planning Council for Early Care and Education. After creating and successfully coordinating a summer Kindergarten Intervention Program for African American Children within her local school district, she participates on the design team for Ready Kids East County. Teaching students to learn to read well, think critically, and develop a love of literacy is a portion of her work. Assuring students have access to literature that reflects their lives and cultures in a positive light is the fuel of her passion. Thus, writing and publishing books for beginning and early readers is a byproduct of her company’s mission. She writes so African American children can say, I see Me On the Page.

Any Contra Costa County Covid mandates in place on April 3, 2022 will be adhered to.

For more info, go to www.brentwoodlibraryfoundation.org

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