Actor Kal Penn Comes to Left Bank Books This December

Dec 2, 2021 at 12:53 pm
Kal Penn is the latest celebrity to host an event with Left Bank Books. - Courtesy Left Bank Books
Courtesy Left Bank Books
Kal Penn is the latest celebrity to host an event with Left Bank Books.

Fresh off a visit from native St. Louisan Andy Cohen, Left Bank Books (399 N Euclid Avenue, 314-367-6731) will host an event with actor Kal Penn for the release of his book You Can’t Be Serious.

The actor will be at Brennan’s Work & Leisure (3015 Locust Street, 314-620-3969) at 7 p.m. on December 13. Penn has acted in movies such as Harold and Kumar and TV shows like House and How I Met Your Mother. In his book, Penn recounts how he confronted racism in Hollywood, “pulling back the curtain on the nuances of opportunity and racism in the entertainment industry,” how he found encouragement, built allies, and “dealt with early reminders that he might never fit in,” a press release for the event says.

Details about his work with the Obama administration — he had left his full-time acting career to be an aide at the White House’s Office of Public Engagement — are also included in the book, including a time he accepted an invitation to take the entire White House Office of Public Engagement to a strip club.

But, Penn also dives into his personal life in You Can’t Be Serious, telling the story of his first date with his fiancé Josh, how he resisted the path his family members encouraged him to take (“something practical” like a doctor, a press release says), and how he handled being the son of immigrants and grandson of Gandhian freedom fighters.

Reviews call the book an enjoyable, insightful read that sprinkles in humor. The event will have signed copies of the book available for pick-up or mail-out. Books are included in the price of the ticket. If you can’t attend in person, the show will be livestreamed as a virtual event. Masks and proof of vaccination are required to get into the event. Admit one and virtual tickets cost $34, while admit two tickets cost $39. Find more information on

Follow Jenna on Twitter at @writesjenna. Email the author at [email protected]
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