Comedy & Readings

The Authors and Comedians We Can't Wait to See This Fall

Jonathan Van Ness? Ta-Nehisi Coates? Yes, please.

By Chris Gray August 26, 2019 Published in the September 2019 issue of Houstonia Magazine

Asher PriceBrazos Bookstore | Sept. 11

Earl Campbell overcame crippling shyness to electrify college football at UT-Austin and charge into Bayou City immortality with Bum Phillips’s “Luv Ya Blue” Oilers. Austin American-Statesman reporter Price visits town to discuss his new biography of the former running back, Earl Campbell: Yards After Contact, with veteran Houston sportswriter Dale Robertson.

Colson WhiteheadInprint | Sept. 16

Winner of a Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award for 2016’s Underground Railroad (soon to be an Amazon series), the Manhattan novelist reads an excerpt from follow-up The Nickel Boys, in which students at a Tallahassee school (barely) endure the most brutal methods of Jim Crow discrimination imaginable.

Ta-Nehisi CoatesInprint | Oct. 29

In The Water Dancer, the National Book Award–winning author of 2015’s Between the World and Me plunges readers into the world of protagonist Hiram, an escaped Virginia slave who must reconcile his desire to return to his adopted family with his need to understand the supernatural power that appeared after he nearly drowned.

Jay MohrImprov Houston | Nov. 1-3

The former Saturday Night Live player—and, lest we forget, nemesis to Tom Cruise’s character in Jerry Maguire—is yet another comedian to add “podcast host” to his résumé. Mohr Stories reveals his knack for incisive questions amid the wisecracks and impressions. His uncanny Christopher Walken, by the way, proves handy come sponsor-plugging time.

Ellen Byron | Murder by the Book | Nov. 6

The native New Yorker’s “Cajun Country Mystery” series follows Maggie Crozat, a bohemian B&B owner doubling as a detective in the land of green, purple, and gold. In fifth installment Fatal Cajun Festival, Maggie looks into the murder of a singer from her hometown. 

Jane Lynch and Kate FlannerySociety for the Performing Arts | Nov. 8

The stars of Glee and The Office, respectively, have cooked up a comedy cabaret act that combines pop-rock favorites of yesterday and today with the rapid repartee of NPR’s Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me. Their Two Lost Souls tour should include plenty of tunes from their Billboard Top 10 album from 2016, A Swingin’ Little Christmas.

Elizabeth GilbertInprint | Nov. 11

The journalist and author who started a movement with her 2006 memoir Eat, Pray, Love will read from latest novel City of Girls, in which an elderly woman recalls—with few regrets, if any—her uninhibited youth in New York City’s bustling 1940s theater scene.

Jonathan Van NessRevention Music Center | Dec. 7

The sharp-witted Queer Eye grooming specialist is a natural for the standup circuit. With his Funny or Die parody Gay of Thrones at an end, Van Ness’s Road to Beijing tour arrives just in time to plug aptly named new memoir Over the Top.

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