Prolific and controversial bestselling author Garry Wills will be at Pleasanton's Firehouse Arts Center at noon Wednesday to discuss his latest book, "The Future of the Catholic Church with Pope Francis."
He will speak and read excerpts from the book, have a question-and-answer session, and sign books.
Wills, who has written just under 40 books, won the Pulitzer Prize for "Lincoln at Gettysburg."
Kirkus Reviews described Wills' latest book as follows: "Beautifully conceived and wrought essays that systematically address the wrongheadedness of the Catholic Church over centuries ... (Wills) valiantly destroys the church's unjustified stances (in the name of 'natural law') on birth control, abortion, and the right of women to serve as priests. A welcome, thoughtful menu."
After entering and leaving the Jesuit order, Wills earned bachelor's and master's degrees in philosophy before William F. Buckley Jr. hired him at the age of 23 as a drama critic for National Review. Wills went on to earn a doctorate in classics from Yale in 1961, then taught history at Johns Hopkins for 18 years. He has been professor of history at Northwestern University since 1980.
A trained classicist, Wills is proficient in Greek and Latin. His house in Evanston, Ill., is "filled with books" that he has read: The first-floor landing is American novelists and poets; the hallway is Greek literature and philosophy; a converted bedroom, in which he writes, is devoted to English literature; another contains American politics and Latin literature; and the third-floor hall is economics and religion, including four shelves on St. Augustine.
Tickets are $10. Visit www.firehousearts.org, go to the box office at 4444 Railroad Ave., or call 931-4848.