17th Bookmarks Festival of Books & Authors set for Sept. 24

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 15, 2022

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Bookmarks has announced the 17th Annual Festival of Books & Authors which will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 24, in downtown Winston-Salem. The Bookmarks festival continues to be the largest annual book festival in the Carolinas. Fifty authors will visit Winston-Salem over the course of four days. Festival authors will visit with students in Triad schools on Friday, Sept. 23, meeting with thousands of pre-K through college-aged students.

All events will be free to the public, including activities for every age group and reader. Festival goers will encounter interactive author panels on a variety of genres, booksignings, kids’ activities, exhibitors and food trucks. These events will take place at various locations on Spruce, Poplar and Holly streets with panels in Calvary Moravian Church, Milton Rhodes Center for the Arts, Hanesbrands Theatre and Footnote.

Saturday festival events will kick off with a special storytime featuring of Loud Mouse from Frozen’s Elsa and Tony Award-winner Idina Menzel, along with acclaimed writer and teacher Cara Mentzel at 9 a.m. at Winston Square Park. There will also be a Winston-Salem Police Department Paw Patrol Dance Party and a performance from the Winston-Salem Youth Chorus. A booksigning with Menzel and Mentzel will follow the event. Due to safety concerns and park capacity, wristbands will be required for this event; go to www.bookmarksnc.org/festival to learn more and stay updated.

Sandra Cisneros, bestselling author of “The House on Mango Street,” will be at Calvary Moravian Church at 11 a.m. to discuss her new book of poetry, “Woman Without Shame.” This is a free keynote at the festival and presented in support from WellCare North Carolina.

There are ticketed events leading up to and after the festival including the sold-out keynote opening event with New York Times bestselling author Taylor Jenkins Reid.

On Friday, Sept. 23, there will be three ticketed events:

At noon, Bookmarks and author Wiley Cash will host the first annual Southern Lit Lunch presented by the North Carolina Writers’ Network. This year’s event will feature Sarah Addison Allen in conversation about her new book, “Other Birds.” This is the only event to see Wiley Cash and Sarah Addison Allen. There are two ticket options available: $40 (includes a pre-signed copy of Other Birds and choice of boxed lunch from Footnote) and $10 Admission (does not include book or lunch).

At 4 p.m., Bookmarks’ All the Love subscription members will have access to an exclusive meet and greet with romance authors Tessa Bailey, Adriana Herrera and Tracey Livesay. Previously featured in virtual events, the authors will be in person signing books and chatting with members ahead of their Saturday panel. This is a private event for All the Love subscribers; however, subscriptions are available at www.bookmarksnc.org/AlltheLove.

At 8:30 p.m., join Josh Ritter and Brendan Slocumb at Hanesbrands Theatre for Stories and Song, where they will discuss and perform their work. Tickets are $25 and include a pre-signed paperback copy of “The Great Glorious Goddamn Of It All” by Ritter with an add-on option for a pre-signed hardcover copy of “The Violin Conspiracy” by Slocumb. This is the only event where Ritter will be appearing during the festival.

Thursday and Friday event tickets are already on sale at www.bookmarksnc.org/festival.

On Monday, Sept. 26, the festival closing conversation with Neil deGrasse Tyson will be held at R.J. Reynolds Auditorium at 7 p.m. Tyson will be discussing his newest book, “Starry Messenger: Cosmic Perspectives on Civilization.” Tyson will be in conversation with Matt and Shari Brady, STEM educators and co-founders of the nonprofit organization The Science Of (TSO). Tickets are on sale now at www.bookmarksnc.org/NeildeGrasseTyson and include a pre-signed copy of the book.

Tickets and all information can be found at www.bookmarksnc.org/festival.

The following is a list of the authors who will appear at the Saturday, Sept. 24, free Festival of Books & Authors:

Fiction authors: Tessa Bailey, Sandra Brown, Sandra Cisneros, P. Djèlí Clark, Sidik Fofana, Jamie Ford, Megan Giddings, Andrew Sean Greer, Adriana Herrera, Oscar Hokeah, T. Kingfisher, TJ Klune, Tracey Livesay, Charlie Lovett, Joanna Lowell, Sarah McCoy, Naomi Novik, Lucinda Roy, Brendan Slocumb, Scott Turow, Tia Williams, Rita Woods.

Nonfiction authors: Anne Bogel, Mike Duncan, Marcie Cohen Ferris, Sandra A. Gutierrez, Jeanne Simkins Hollis, K.C. Hysmith, Anya Kamenetz, Ricky Moore, Marc Palmieri, George Christopher Simkins III, Belinda Smith-Sullivan.

Children’s and teen book authors: Samira Ahmed, Jennifer Lynn Barnes, Anne Bogel, Sayantani DasGupta, Tracy Deonn, Kat Fajardo, Alan Gratz, Tiffany D. Jackson, Estela Juarez, Britney S. Lewis, Charlie Lovett, Zahra Marwan, Kwame Mbalia, Stacy McAnulty, Tui T. Sutherland.

Bookmarks is a literary arts non-profit that cultivates community by bringing people of all ages together with books and authors who educate, inspire, challenge, and entertain. For 18 years, Bookmarks has hosted the largest annual Festival of Books & Authors, outreach into schools and community, year-round events for all ages, and opportunities to connect through the power of story. Bookmarks is located at 634 West Fourth Street in downtown Winston-Salem. Go to bookmarksnc.org for more information.