Open Book

OPEN BOOK, it’s not just an event, it’s an experience.

Sabaa Tahir, ’22 National Book Awardee, in conversation with Sehba Sarwar

Wednesday, April, 26, 2023 | 6:30 – 7:45 PM
followed by book signing

Polytechnic School Library | 996 Cornell Road | Pasadena

Admission to the event is FREE with registration by April 24

Mix & Mingle Donor Reception

5:30 to 6:15 PM

We offer you an extraordinary opportunity to support Open Book Community Events.  Please consider becoming a donor and join us to mix and mingle with Sabaa Tahir and Sehba Sarwar.  

Donor Levels & Benefits

$100 – Bronze Level: Author reception, copy of All My Rage*

$250 – Silver Level: All the above and copy of Black Wings*, 2 tickets to future Fall 2023 Open Book Event

$500 – Gold Level: All the above, reserved parking and $50 Gift Certificate to Octavia’s Bookshelf Bookstore

* Books will be distributed at event reception desk

Free Event Details

Register by April 24, 2023

Sabaa Tahir is best known for her New York Times bestselling An Ember in the Ashes series. She grew up in California’s Mojave Desert at her family’s eighteen-room motel. There, she spent her time devouring fantasy novels, listening to thunderous indie rock, and playing guitar and piano badly. She began writing her #1 New York Times bestselling An Ember in the Ashes series while working nights as a newspaper editor. The series has been translated into over thirty-five languages, and the first book was named one of TIME’s 100 Best Fantasy Books of All Time.

Tahir’s recent novel All My Rage, received the 2022 YA National Book Award, the 2023 Printz Award, and the 2022 Boston Globe–Horn Book Award for Fiction and Poetry. It travels back and forth in time, telling the stories of teens in present-day California and their parents when they were young in Pakistan. She writes in first person, switching between perspectives in chapters that unfold like raw journal entries. Although the book is nuanced in its inclusion of Pakistani, Muslim, and desert culture, it speaks to something shared by many: the “universal experience of being in an inescapable situation where you have no good choices.”

She will be in conversation with local author Sehba Sarwar, author of Black Wings. Her essays, fiction, and poems have appeared in The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, LA Parent, Houston Chronicle, Altadena Literary Review, Asia: Magazine of Asian Literature, Callaloo and elsewhere. Her short stories are anthologized by Feminist Press, Akashic Books, and Harper Collins India. Born and raised in Karachi, Pakistan, Sarwar spent the first half of her life in a home filled with artists, activists, and educators.

Afterwards, there will be audience Q & A followed by a book signing.

As a tribute to Sabaa’s favorite wardrobe item, wear your loudest, most garish socks!

Open Book thanks this event's sponsor

Teachers: Access All My Rage Study Guides for classroom discussion & assignments:

What is the Open Book Series?

Building on the successful Pasadena Festival of Woman Authors event which has been presented annually since 2009, the vision for the new series is to provide opportunities for the community to enjoy authors of all kinds – both established and emerging, national and local, men and women, writers of fiction and non-fiction – in settings that complement the author’s work or background and allow for engagement with the attendees.