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Opus & Olives: Fine Print and Fine Food

Since its humble beginnings in 2004, Opus & Olives has become the premier literary evening of the Twin Cities. Publishers and authors call it “the best book party in the country!” Attendance at this fun event has grown to include more than 1,100 community leaders from the business, political and social worlds. The evening begins with a reception during which the emcee and authors are available to speak with guests and sign books, which can be purchased at the event. There’s a fun martini bar, as well as traditional cocktails and complimentary wine. Following this is a wonderful, chef-prepared, sit-down dinner after which each author speaks about their book, the writing process, and their inspiration. At the end of the author presentations, a representative from Delta Air Lines will draw the winning ticket for two First Class travel tickets. The evening ends with another opportunity to visit with authors and purchase books.


The 2016 author lineup has now been finalized! It’s an all-woman cast featuring: historian Candice Millard; comedian and journalist Faith Salie; ever-curious, often humorous science writer, Mary Roach; the fully breathing and ‘groovy’ Terry McMillan; and Nadia Hashimi, pediatrician and internationally bestselling author of Afghan descent. Get your tables early—it’s going to be another amazing Opus & Olives!


Aproval Junkie by Faith SalieFaith Salie, author of Approval Junkie: Adventures in Caring Too Much

From comedian and journalist Faith Salie, of NPR’s Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me! and CBS News Sunday Morning, a collection of humorous essays chronicling the author’s adventures during her lifelong quest for approval. She’s done it all in the name of validation. Whether it’s trying to impress her parents with a perfect GPA, undergoing an exorcism in the hopes of saving her toxic marriage, or maintaining the BMI of “a flapper with a touch of dysentery,” Salie is the ultimate approval seeker—an “approval junkie,” if you will. As a commentator on politics and pop culture, Salie’s been interviewed by the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Bill O’Reilly, and Anderson Cooper. As a television and public radio host, she herself has interviewed newsmakers from Lorne Michaels to President Carter to Robert Redford, who invited her to call him “Bob.” Faith attended Oxford University on a Rhodes scholarship… Pretty. Smart. Very funny.


Featured Authors. Latest Books.

Hero of the EmpireCandice Millard, author of Hero of the Empire: The Boer War, a Daring Escape and the Making of Winston Churchill

Millard says she doesn’t write “full biographies” of historical figures; rather, she delves into “moments of time that are powerful and illuminating” about that person. Hero of the Empire might be classified as nonfiction, but it reads like an action-adventure tale, with a swashbuckling hero performing amazing feats while evading villains intent on capturing him. Despite there being so many books about Churchill, not many people know of his heroism during the Second Boer War (1899–1902), when he was in his mid-20s. Captured and imprisoned in Pretoria in 1899, Churchill became a national hero in Britain after escaping and making his way 300 miles through the desert to the British consulate in Portuguese South Africa. He then returned to Pretoria to rescue his imprisoned comrades.

I Almost Forgot About You, by Terry McMillanTerry McMillan, author of I Almost Forgot About You

Terry McMillan was born and raised in Port Huron, Michigan, and discovered her love of literature while shelving books at the local library. She burst on to the literary scene in 1987 with her wildly acclaimed New York Times bestseller Mama, which won the Doubleday New Voices in Fiction award in 1986.  Her signature humor, wisdom, and warmth are on full display in her latest book, I Almost Forgot About You. Dr. Georgia Young’s wonderful life—great friends, family, and successful career—aren’t enough to keep her from feeling stuck and restless. When she decides to make some major changes in her life, quitting her job as an optometrist, and moving house, she finds herself on a wild journey that may or may not include a second chance at love. As in Waiting to Exhale and How Stella Got Her Groove Back, legions of readers will learn what can happen when you face your fears, take a chance, and open yourself up to life, love, and the possibility of a new direction.

House Without WindowsNadia Hashimi, author of A House Without Windows

A vivid, unforgettable story of an unlikely sisterhood—an emotionally powerful and haunting tale of friendship that illuminates the plight of women in a traditional culture—from the author of the bestsellingThe Pearl That Broke Its Shell and When the Moon Is Low. For two decades, Zeba was a loving wife, a patient mother, and a peaceful villager. But her quiet life is shattered when her husband, Kamal, is found brutally murdered with a hatchet in the courtyard of their home. Nearly catatonic with shock, Zeba is unable to account for her whereabouts at the time of his death. Arrested and jailed, Zeba hires an Afghan-born, American-raised lawyer. With the fate of a seemingly ordinary housewife in his hands, her lawyer discovers that, like Afghanistan itself, his client may not be at all what he imagines.

Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, by Mary Roach

Mary Roach, author of Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War

With humor and inimitable interest, Mary Roach tackles the science behind some of a soldier’s most challenging adversaries—panic, exhaustion, heat, ​flies, ​noise—and introduces us to the scientists who seek to conquer them. ​She ​​visits a re-purposed movie studio where amputee actors help prepare Marine Corps medics for the shock and gore of combat wounds. At Camp Lemmonier, Djibouti, ​she discovers that diarrhea can be a threat to national security. At the U.S. Army’s Natick Labs, fashion designers​ explain to her why a zipper is a problem for a sniper. Grunt answers questions not found in any other book on the military, such as: “How is a wedding gown like a bomb suit?” and “Why are shrimp more dangerous to sailors than sharks?”

Recommended attire: Cocktail or Business Professional

Tickets now on sale

Bookplate Seat: $150.00 | Bookplate Table (10 seats): $1,500.00
Recommended Read Seat: $250.00 | $2,500.00
First Edition Seat: $350.00
 | $3,500.00

Reserve Now


Opus & Olives is a fundraising event hosted by–and supporting the work of–The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library and local literacy projects of the Pioneer Press.
Event date: 
Sunday, October 16, 2016 - 5:00pm
Event address: 
Saint Paul RiverCentre
175 Kellogg Blvd W
St Paul, MN 55102
Approval Junkie: Adventures in Caring Too Much Cover Image
ISBN: 9780553419931
Availability: Special Order Only - Please Contact Us
Published: Crown Archetype - April 19th, 2016

A House Without Windows: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062449689
Availability: Not in Our Store - Available to Order
Published: William Morrow - August 16th, 2016

I Almost Forgot about You Cover Image
ISBN: 9781101902578
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Crown Publishing Group (NY) - June 7th, 2016

Hero of the Empire: The Boer War, a Daring Escape, and the Making of Winston Churchill Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385535731
Availability: Not in Our Store - Available to Order
Published: Doubleday - September 20th, 2016

Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393245448
Availability: Not in Our Store - Available to Order
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - June 7th, 2016