David Sedaris (2017)

reads from

Theft by Finding:
Diaries (1977-2002)



June 4, 2017
6:30 PM ET
(Doors at 5:30)


Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138


There will not be a standby line for this event.

Harvard Book Store welcomes back David Sedaris for a reading from his latest book, Theft by Finding: Diaries (1977-2002). One of the most anticipated books of 2017 (as noted by the Boston Globe, the New York Times Book Review, New York's "Vulture", and BookRiot), Theft by Finding has been, literally, a lifetime in the making.

David Sedaris bookstore events are like no other bookstore event, and we're thrilled to welcome him back to Harvard Book Store this June! Please review our guidelines and tips for attending the event.


Tickets for this event will go on sale Thursday, May 4th, at 9am via Eventbrite on harvard.com. Tickets are available online only.

Each ticket admits one to the store for the reading and includes one copy of Theft by Finding. Tickets are $29.75 + Eventbrite fees. Seating is general admission. Doors will open approximately an hour before the event. Tickets are limited to four (4) per order.

In-Room Tickets: 75 tickets for this event will reserve a seat in the room where Mr. Sedaris will be speaking. [UPDATE: In-room seating is now sold out.]

Overflow Tickets: These tickets are for overflow standing room (and some first-come, first-served seating) at other locations throughout the store, with audio and viewing screens of the talk. It's basically one big party. [UPDATE: Overflow tickets are now sold out.]

Each ticket guarantees a spot in the signing line after the reading. The signing line will form outside the bookstore, forming down Plympton Street, once the reading concludes. 

Signing Guidelines

David will stay until the last person gets his or her book signed. The signing line will open to the public once all ticket holders have gotten their books signed. David likes to spend a few minutes with every single person though, so please note that his signings often go late into the night. The last time we hosted, we wrapped up the signing well after midnight! The store will remain open for those attending the signing.

Additional copies of Theft by Finding will be available for purchase that day, as well as many of David's previous titles. David will sign any of his books, including books brought from home. 

Please note that there is no photography or other recording permitted at this event.


Why not host the reading and signing at a bigger venue? Mr. Sedaris loves doing book signings and readings in bookstores themselves, and for additional contractual reasons this was organized as an in-store event.

Can I listen to the reading if I don't buy a ticket? Due to the capacity of the store space, the reading itself (from 6:30 to 7:30pm) will be limited to ticket holders. The store will be closed to the public from approximately 5:30pm to 8pm.

When will ticket holders receive their copies of the book? Copies of the book will be distributed to ticket holders when they arrive and check in for the event that evening. 

If I don't buy a ticket, when can I join the signing line? Once ticket holders have gotten their books signed, we'll open up the signing line to all. It's unlikely this will happen before 9pm.

I can't come. Can I order a signed book? YES!

  • We'll be taking orders for signed copies of Theft by Finding only. (Sorry, we can't accommodate signed requests for other David Sedaris titles.)
  • Place an online order here (deadline for online orders is Thursday, June 1st at 11:59pm).
  • Phone orders may be placed up until the event start time.
  • Please also see our signed event book FAQ.

Is Mr. Sedaris really going to stay and sign books for everyone? Yes!

About Theft by Finding

It's no coincidence that the world's best writers tend to keep diaries. If you faithfully record your life in a journal, you're writing every day--and if you write every day, you become a better writer. David Sedaris has kept a diary for forty years. This means that if you've kept a diary for a year of your life or less, Sedaris is at least forty times better at writing than you are.

In his diaries, he's recorded everything that has captured his attention--overheard comments, salacious gossip, soap opera plot twists, secrets confided by total strangers. These observations are the source code for his finest work, and with them he has honed his self-deprecation and learned to craft his cunning, surprising sentences.

Now, for the first time, Sedaris shares his private writings with the world in Theft By Finding: Diaries 1977-2002. This is the first-person account of how a drug-abusing dropout with a weakness for the International House of Pancakes and a chronic inability to hold down a real job became one of the funniest people on the planet.

Most diaries -- even the diaries of great writers -- are impossibly dull, because they generally write about their emotions, or their dreams, or their interior life. Sedaris's diaries are unique because they face outward. He doesn't tell us his feelings about the world, he shows us the world instead, and in so doing he shows us something deeper about himself.

Written with a sharp eye and ear for the bizarre, the beautiful, and the uncomfortable, and with a generosity of spirit that even a misanthropic sense of humor can't fully disguise, Theft By Finding proves that Sedaris is one of our great modern observers. It's a potent reminder that there's no such thing as a boring day--when you're as perceptive and curious as Sedaris, adventure waits around every corner.

David Sedaris
David Sedaris

David Sedaris

David Sedaris is the bestselling author of the books Calypso, Theft By Finding, Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk, When You Are Engulfed in Flames, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, Me Talk Pretty One Day, Holidays on Ice, Naked, and Barrel Fever. He is a regular contributor to The New Yorker and BBC Radio 4.

Photo Credit: Ingrid Christie

The David Sedaris in-store reading is sold out. Due to the capacity of the store space, the reading itself (from 6:30 to 7:30pm) will be limited to ticket holders. The store will be closed to the public from approximately 5:30pm to 8pm. Once ticket holders have gotten their books signed, we’ll open up the signing line to all. It’s unlikely this will happen before 9pm.

Tickets are non-refundable and non-returnable.


Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes

As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.

Unable to attend a Harvard Book Store author event? You can still pre-order a signed book by one of our visiting authors.

While we can't guarantee fulfillment of a signed book pre-order, our authors are almost always able to sign extra books to fulfill such orders.

Ordering a signed book on harvard.com:

  • Add the book to your shopping cart and then click Checkout.
  • Specify in Order Comments that you want a signed copy of the book.
  • Please note: online orders for signed copies must be placed at least one business day before the event. If you are ordering the day of, please call us instead.

Ordering a signed book by phone:

  • Call us at (617) 661-1515 and one of our booksellers will take your order. Specify you'd like a signed copy.
  • If you are requesting a personalized inscription and/or requesting your book be shipped, we'll need to take down credit card information. If you are planning to pick up the signed book in the store, you can pay on pick-up.


Can I request a personalized inscription?
Unless otherwise noted, we are happy to take requests for the author to sign your book to a specific person, but we can't guarantee it. If you do get a personalized inscription, the book will be non-returnable. We will require credit card information when you place the order.

Do signed books cost more?
There is no extra fee for a signed book!

Do I have to pick it up in the store, or can you deliver my signed book?
As with all web or phone orders, we can hold your book for in-store pickup, or ship it anywhere in the country.

I am planning to attend an author event. Do I need to pre-order a book?
No need. We'll be selling books at the event, and nearly all of our events include a signing at the end of the talk.

More questions? Give us a call!

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