Downtown

Brooklyn Book Festival announces star-studded lineup for 10th anniversary

June 17, 2015 Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Famed actor and author John Leguizamo is among hundreds of authors participating in this year’s Brooklyn Book Fesitval. Photo by Scott Roth/Invision/AP

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At a lively evening event in the heart of Downtown Brooklyn on Tuesday, the Brooklyn Book Festival (BKBF) and Brooklyn Book Festival Literary Council announced the initial line-up of the first 150 national and international authors slated to take part in the 10th Anniversary BKBF — one of the nation’s largest events celebrating the written word. The festival is welcoming back AT&T as its major sponsor.

The popular weeklong September festival kicks off Sept. 14, with five weeknights of literature themed “Bookend” programs presented all over New York City. The weekend, which will start with a new BKBF Children’s Day on Sept. 19, will culminate with the flagship, fourteen-stage BKBF on Sept. 20, when 300 authors of beloved works of fiction and non-fiction (including Mona Eltahawy, Lauren Groff, Marlon James, Phil Klay, Dennis Lehane and Jon Ronson), poetry (including Nick Flynn, Saeed Jones and Tracy K. Smith), and graphic novels participate in panels, readings and other creative performances of their work.

The city’s largest free literary festival, the BKBF began as a start-up festival in 2006 presenting local authors, and has grown exponentially over ten years into one of the country’s premier international book festivals, drawing tens of thousands each year to the global creative capital of Brooklyn.

“A decade in, the Brooklyn Book Festival has transformed the literary landscape of New York City in ways that we never imagined at the outset,” said Johnny Temple, publisher of Akashic Books and chair of the Brooklyn Literary Council. “What started as a homegrown affair with a local flavor has blossomed into one of the world’s most prestigious international gatherings of writers and book lovers.”

“Authors from around the world will make this milestone a truly global affair, reflecting the unmatched diversity of our borough and its readers. I am also pleased that this year will include expanded children’s programming to help stoke a love of books in our youngest Brooklynites and their growing minds,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.

The Sept. 19 Children’s Day (for children ages 2-11) will showcase invited writers and illustrators at MetroTech Commons in Downtown Brooklyn, on two tented stages and in the auditorium of NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering. Favorite children’s and young adult book authors, including Edwidge Danticat, Kevin Henkes, Lenore Look, George O’Connor, Matt de la Peña, Jon Scieszka and current top ten New York Times bestsellers Chris Grabenstein, Adam Rubin and Daniel Salmieri will present their works through readings, performance, puppetry and music.

Beginning Sept. 14, the week of Bookend events will feature literary-themed activities taking place in clubs, parks, bookstores, theatres and libraries throughout the week. In celebration of the festival’s 10th anniversary, this year BKBF Bookends will expand into other boroughs and locations, bringing BKBF’s cultural programming to book-lovers all over the city. The schedule of more than sixty Bookends will be announced in August.

The BKBF is presented by the non-profit Brooklyn Book Festival, Inc. and the Brooklyn Book Festival Literary Council. AT&T is the major partner with additional support from the Brooklyn Borough President’s Office, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, Con Edison, Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, Forest City Ratner Companies, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, NYC Department of Parks & Recreation, New York State Council on the Arts, NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering, and TD Bank. Media sponsors are ABC7, Wall Street Journal and WNYC. The Festival’s cultural and programming partners include BAM, Brooklyn Historical Society, Brooklyn Law School, Brooklyn Public Library, Cave Canem, Center for Fiction, National Book Foundation, New York Review of Books, PEN American Center, Poetry Society of America, St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church, St. Francis College and The Nation.