BATON ROUGE, La (press release) – The Louisiana Center for the Book in the State Library of Louisiana is proud to present the 17th Annual Louisiana Book Festival. The Louisiana Book Festival is a free, nationally recognized literary event that typically takes place live and in-person around Capitol Park in Baton Rouge. This year, because of the continuing pandemic, the festival is being presented virtually with 40 programs and over 80 authors and presenters.
“Since its inception, the Louisiana Book Festival has grown in size and popularity, drawing attendees from all over the world, with an annual attendance of nearly 30,000 people joining us in Baton Rouge to celebrate the literary culture of our state and its readers,” said Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser. “While we look forward to the in-person return next year, we are excited to be able to bring the festival to you virtually this year.”
The Louisiana Book Festival will launch programs on Saturday, October 30, with new content made available every weekend through Sunday, November 14. Author pages will be posted soon, and the full schedule of programs will be available in mid-October. These and more information and updates can be found on the Louisiana Book Festival website and on Facebook.
“I am thrilled for us to be able to present this virtual version of the Louisiana Book Festival, and I am especially excited to participate by interviewing the iconic singer/songwriter Rickie Lee Jones about her memoir,” said State Librarian Rebecca Hamilton. “Although we will miss the personal interaction and intimacy only an in-person festival can bring, we are grateful for the many authors and participants who cooperated to make this year’s festival possible.”
One Book One Festival, which has become a festival tradition, continues with a discussion of Ernest J. Gaines’s A Gathering of Old Men, presented again by the ever-popular Dr. Gary Richards, so attendees will want to prepare for that by reading or revisiting this timely Louisiana classic.
Copies of the novel as well as all books featured at the festival may be ordered through the official festival independent bookseller, Cavalier House Books of Denham Springs. Local artist Jonathan Mayers was commissioned to create the piece titled Lané a kawènn-la (which means The Year of the Turtle in the Creole language Kouri-Vini) for the festival. The original painting was photographed by David Humphreys and can be seen on the website.
The Louisiana Center for the Book, established in the State Library of Louisiana in 1994 for the purpose of stimulating public interest in reading, books, literacy, and libraries and celebrating Louisiana’s rich literary heritage, is the state affiliate of the Library of Congress Center for the Book.