top of page

With arts venues closed, time to turn to a few good books

Arts venues across the Bay Area are pausing plays, concerts, ballets and exhibits in an effort to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, so now is a great time to cozy down at home with a book. With venues shut down, I am a critic without a cause. However, in addition to reviewing the arts, I get paid to lead book discussion groups, or what I call book seminars. I’ll take this opportunity to share some of my favorite books. And who knows, maybe I’ll add book reviews to my repertoire even after the arts schedule resumes. Right now I am in the middle of books on the Silk Road, “The Silk Roads: A New History of the World” by Peter Frankopan, on the Opium Wars, “Imperial Twilight: The Opium War and the End of China’s Last Golden Age” by Stephen R. Platt and Amitav Ghosh’s “River of Smoke.”

For the complete story, pick up this week's edition of The Ark on newsstands or SUBSCRIBE NOW for home delivery.

Recent stories

Support The Ark’s commitment to high-impact community journalism.

The Ark, twice named the nation's best small community weekly, is dedicated to delivering investigative, accountability journalism with a mission to increase civic engagement and participation by providing the knowledge that can help sculpt the community and change lives. Your support makes this possible.

In addition to subscribing to The Ark for weekly home delivery, please consider making a contribution to support independent local journalism. For more information, contact Publisher & Advertising Director Henriette Corn at or 415-435-1190.​

bottom of page