With the summer just about at the halfway point, the future is nearer and scarier than ever. Guiding us through dystopia will be Ray Bradbury, appearing via Skype at McNally Jackson bookstore. The science fiction writer, almost 90 years old, will speak with his recent biographer, Sam Weller, who will read from Listen to the Echoes: The Ray Bradbury Interviews, and who will be appearing in the flesh (Wednesday, July 21, 7 p.m., free). While we’re waiting for the future to arrive, it seems as good a time as any to reflect on the zeitgeist, with essayist Chuck Klosterman reading from Eating the Dinosaur. And, he’s snagged the city’s most prestigious Barnes & Noble for the reading – take from that what you will (Wednesday, July 21, 7 p.m., Union Square Barnes & Noble, free). Doing his part to help us deal with the agonies of modern living, inflammatory playwright Neil LaBute will read from 1989′s Filthy Talk for Troubled Times at the Drama Book Shop. The play was the author’s first, but he’s been trying to end its public life-until now, as it’s set to be released in a volume with other LaBute rarities (Monday, July 26, 6 p.m., free). Also reading this week (twice!) is “20 under 40″ author and technology addict Gary Shteyngart, from his new book, Super Sad True Love Story (Tuesday, July 27, 7 p.m., East 17th Street Barnes & Noble; Wednesday, July 28, 12:30 p.m., Bryant Park Reading Room; both free). Overwhelmed by the options? Try some Speed Shrinking, the psychiatric equivalent of speed dating and the title and subject of Susan Shapiro‘s new book (Wednesday, July 21, 7 p.m., Housing Works, free).
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