My feelings toward the annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, held at my alma mater UCLA, have always been mixed. On the positive side, it's a delightful event, with tens of thousands of literate Angelinos crowding onto the campus to buy the wares of authors famous and obscure. On the negative side, it's always held on a weekend around the time of my birthday. For that reason, this is the first time I've attended both days of the Festival; usually I'm preparing for and holding a birthday party on the Saturday of the Festival. (And last year, since my party and trial work swallowed the weekend, I couldn't go at all.) But this year, I held the party the weekend before the Festival, freeing us to avail ourselves of two days of Festival events.
And it's a good thing we were there both days, because from our perspective this year our family took over the event. That's because all four of the Goldberg siblings -- Lee, Karen, Linda, and Tod -- were signing books; and Tod was also participating in multiple panels and events. Further, their uncle, Burl Barer (top left), showed up on Sunday for Lee's, Karen's and Linda's joint signing at the Borders booth on Sunday.
Also pictured: The ever-elegant (even as a great-grandmother) Julie Andrews answers questions on the Target kid's stage. (One kid asked her, "Are you Mary Poppins?" She hesitated, then replied, "Yes. Yes, I'm Mary Poppins," provoking thunderous cheers from the children in the audience. Another kid then asked, "Where's Bert?", referring to Dick Van Dyke's character from the movie. She replied, "He lives near here, along the California coast.") Lee, Karen, and Linda, signing at the Border's booth. Tod, signing with his fellow participants on the Saturday afternoon panel, "The Art of the Short Story." Finally, (traveling back in time, as Blogger seems to like to do with photos), a picture of that panel.