The Chronicle Book Club features Anthony Marra

In a small rural village in Chechnya, eight-year-old Havaa watches from the woods as Russian soldiers abduct her father in the middle of the night and then set fire to her home. When their lifelong neighbor Akhmed finds Havaa hiding in the forest with a strange blue suitcase, he makes a decision that will forever change their lives. He will seek refuge at the abandoned hospital where the sole remaining doctor, Sonja Rabina, treats the wounded.

For Sonja, the arrival of Akhmed and Havaa is an unwelcome surprise. Weary and overburdened, she has no desire to take on additional risk and responsibility. But over the course of five extraordinary days, Sonja’s world will shift on its axis and reveal the intricate pattern of connections that weaves together the pasts of these three unlikely companions and unexpectedly decides their fate. A story of the transcendent power of love in wartime, A Constellation of Vital Phenomena is a work of sweeping breadth, profound compassion, and lasting significance.

Admission price includes refreshments and light appetizers and a copy of the book mailed to the address you provide upon registering. Book distribution will be handled personally by our team, so your book will arrive within five business days after placing your order.


Thursday, June 30

6-6:30 p.m.: Check-in, light appetizers and refreshments

6:30-7:30 p.m.: Discussion with Anthony Marra

7:30-8 p.m.: Book-signing opportunity


Mechanics’ Institute

57 Post Street, Fourth Floor

San Francisco, CA 94104


*Members are responsible for their own transportation and any parking fees.

Note: Tickets are limited, nontransferable and ONLY available to active San Francisco Chronicle members. The San Francisco Chronicle may take photographs at this event and use them in its promotional materials. By attending the event, you consent to be photographed and for your image to be used in such materials.