Come to the 14th annual Library of Congress National Book Festival at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama are honorary chairs for the event.
This year’s festival will feature authors, poets and illustrators in several pavilions. Festival-goers can meet and hear firsthand from their favorite poets and authors, get books signed, hear special entertainment, have photos taken with storybook characters and participate in a variety of activities.
Authors of Note Include:
Children’s Pavilion Saturday, August 30
Presentation: 3:20-3:50 pm| Book Signing 4:30-5:30 pm
Ilyasah Shabazz is the third daughter of Malcolm X and Betty Shabazz. She is a community organizer, activist, motivational speaker and author of the critically acclaimed “Growing Up X.” Shabazz is co-editor with Herb Boyd of “The Diary of Malcolm X” and worked with illustrator A.G. Ford on her new book, “The Boy Who Grew Up to Become Malcolm X” (Simon & Schuster). Shabazz promotes higher education, interfaith dialogue and building bridges between cultures for young leaders of the world. She produces the Wake-Up Tour, an exclusive youth empowerment program, and participates on international humanitarian delegations. She is the founder of Malcolm X Enterprises and is a trustee for the Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center.
Peniel E. Joseph
History & Biography Pavilion| Saturday, August 30
Presentation: 2:35-3:20 pm| Book Signing 4:00-5:00 pm
Peniel E. Joseph is an author, historian, activist and professor at Tufts University who focuses much of his work on civil rights, democracy and race relations. Joseph is also a popular commentator on these issues and he has been featured on NPR, PBS’s NewsHour and CSPAN’s Book TV. He is the author of the award-winning “Waiting ‘til the Midnight Hour: A Narrative History of Black Power in America” and “Dark Days, Bright Nights: From Black Power to Barack Obama.” In “Stokely: A Life” (Basic Civitas Books/Perseus), a work 10 years in the making, Joseph provides an authoritative biography of Stokely Carmichael, a key player in the civil rights movement as the leader of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and later black power movement.
Teens Pavilion| Saturday, August 30
Presentation: 2:40-3:10 pm| Book Signing: 3:30-4:30 pm
For her dedication to children and young-adult literature, Jacqueline Woodson received the Margaret A. Edwards Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2005. Woodson is known for exploring important themes in her works, including issues of gender, class, race, family and history. Her picture books, middle-grade and young-adult novels take the reader on an emotional journey by portraying characters in relatable, realistic situations. Woodson has written more than 20 books; some of the most notable include Newbery Honor Medal winners “Show Way,” “Feathers,” and “After Tupac and D Foster” and the Coretta Scott King Award-winning “Miracle’s Boys.” “Brown Girl Dreaming” (Penguin), her newest title released this summer, recalls the story of her own childhood as a young African American girl growing up amid the Civil Rights Movement. Written in verse, each poem gives the reader a snapshot of a child’s effort to build a strong voice in the world.
Teens Pavilion| Saturday, August 30
Presentation: 12-12:30 pm| Book Signing: 1:00-2:00 pm
Queens, N.Y., native Rita Williams-Garcia says, “Writing stories for young people is my passion and my mission.” Recipient of the PEN/Norma Klein Award, Williams-Garcia is known for her works’ realistic portrayal of teens of color. For her New York Times best-seller “One Crazy Summer,” she won the 2011 Newbery Honor Award, the Coretta Scott King Award and the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction. In her latest Coretta Scott King Award-winning novel “P.S. Be Eleven” (HarperCollins), the sequel to “One Crazy Summer,” character Delphine Gaither returns to Brooklyn with her family and tries to “be 11” while she can despite the changing circumstances and responsibilities around her. This historical fiction tells the story of three sisters growing up amid the backdrop of the Black Panthers, Vietnam War and the overall radical change of the 1960s. Williams-Garcia teaches at the Vermont College of Fine Arts in the Writing for Children & Young Adults Program.
Contemporary Life Pavilion| Saturday, August 30
Presentation: 4:25-5:10 pm| Book Signing: 5:20-6:00 pm
Brando Skyhorse gained national attention for his first novel, “The Madonnas of Echo Park,” which received the 2011 PEN/Hemingway Award and the Sue Kaufman Award for First Fiction from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. In his riveting, heartfelt memoir, “Take This Man” (Simon & Schuster), Skyhorse tells the true story of his dysfunctional childhood, a reality he learned 30 years later, after making a surprise online discovery about his biological father. He was born Brando Kelly Ulloa and abandoned by his Mexican father at 3 years old, but his mother decided to change the identity of her young boy, creating the life of “Brando Skyhorse,” the American Indian son of an incarcerated political activist. Brando grows up believing he is an American Indian as he lives with his mother and grandmother in a predominantly Mexican-American neighborhood, going through the rotation of five stepfathers. This memoir follows Skyhorse’s quest to reclaim his identity and search for a father — and the truth.
Fiction & Mystery Pavilion| Saturday, August 30
Presentation: 1:40-2:25 pm| Book Signing: 3:00-4:00 pm
Tiphanie Yanique is the author of the short story collection “How to Escape from a Leper Colony,” the picture book “I Am the Virgin Islands” and the novel “Land of Love and Drowning” (Riverhead). Her writing has won the 2011 BOCAS Prize for Caribbean Fiction, the Boston Review Prize in Fiction, a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers Award, a Pushcart Prize and an Academy of American Poet’s Prize. She has been listed by the Boston Globe as one of 16 cultural figures to watch out for and by the National Book Foundation as one of the 5 Under 35. Her writing has been published in Best African American Fiction, The Wall Street Journal, American Short Fiction and elsewhere. Yanique is also the recipient of a Fulbright scholarship.