From left: Claudia Rankine and Gillian Flynn   Photos: (Rankine) Josh Lucas; (Flynn) E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune

1 Gloria Steinem and Roxane Gay

The People's Church

Women & Children First hosts feminist icon Steinem, who chats about her new memoir, My Life on the Road, with Bad Feminist author Gay. October 29. $28.

2 Ta-Nehisi Coates

Cahn Auditorium at Northwestern University

The Atlantic writer discusses his new book, Between the World and Me, a searing examination of the effects of white supremacy, written in the form of a letter to his teenage son. October 24. $5 to $12.

3 Gillian Flynn

Venue SIX10

The thriller genre’s most reliable hit maker joins Chicago’s first-ever culture festival to talk about life after Gone Girl. September 26. $30.

4 Salman Rushdie

UIC Forum

The longtime fiction star picks up a Chicago Tribune literary award and talks about his new novel, Two Years Eight Months and ­Twenty-Eight Nights. November 7. $10 to $20.

5 Claudia Rankine

Museum of Contemporary Art

Jazz musician David Boykin, hip-hop historian Jeff Chang, and sound artist Christine Hume join Rankine for a performance inspired by Citizen, her award-winning lyric poem. October 31. $10 to $15.

6 Elvis Costello

Francis W. Parker School

The 61-year-old rock star reflects on his improbable rise—the subject of his new memoir, Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink. November 3. $10 to $20.

7 David Sedaris

Auditorium Theatre

The funnyman reads from his latest book, Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls. October 30. $54 to $69.

8 John Irving

Harold Washington Library Center

Hear key passages from Irving’s 14th (!) novel, Avenue of Mysteries. November 11. Free.

9 Masha Gessen

McCormick Auditorium at Northwestern University

Putin, Pussy Riot—this Russian American writer has covered Eastern Europe from every angle. Here, she discusses The Brothers, her book about the siblings behind the Boston Marathon bombing. October 24. $5 to $12.

10 Lawrence Wright

Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago

The Pulitzer-winning journalist chats about Thirteen Days in September, his gripping account of the 1978 peace accords at Camp David. October 25. $5 to $12.