LA
06/19/2010 02:04 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

LA Book Parties: Jennifer Egan's 'Goon Squad' And Jonathan Alter's 'The Promise'

It was a busy night for book lovers as fans and friends hopped between two Westside author events.

Celebrated novelist Jennifer Egan was at the trendy Brentwood Katsuya signing copies of her fourth novel , "A Visit From The Goon Squad." The Washington Post has named Egan "our reward for living through the self-conscious gimmicks and ironic claptrap of postmodernism" and praised her "deeply humane story about growing up and growing old in a culture corroded by technology and marketing."

At the event, Jennifer Egan complimented the Los Angeles book community:

Los Angeles has the reputation on the East Coast of being a place that cares more about movies than books. But in my experience, having read here for all of my books, is that it's also a city of great bookstores and serious readers. In a way, that's no surprise - because a city full of people who love film is a city full of people who love great storytelling.

Meanwhile, Michael and Jamie Lynton and Arianna Huffington were celebrating Newsweek journalist Jonathan Alter's new book on Obama's first year in office, "The Promise." Jamie Lynton delivered a personal introduction to Alter, her brother. Arianna Huffington followed with praise for the book, and then Alter gave a warm, funny talk about what he learned about Barack Obama in the process of writing the biography.

Alter (unknowingly) echoed Egan with his praise for the Los Angeles book community:

People in LA like books a lot more than their reputation would suggest. When people like to stereotype and run down LA, they say [Angelenos] don't like to read, but I've found nothing to be further from the truth. For instance, I was speaking the night of the Lakers-Celtics sixth game, and I had a full house at the RAND Corporation. That's how serious certain people in LA are about politics and books.

LA Celebrates Authors Jennifer Egan and Jonathan Alter