Ann Arbor’s Oldest Continuous Book Festival Enters 13th Consecutive Year
The Kerrytown Bookfest is pleased to announce that we have finalized our speaker lineup for our 13th season, and it’s a doozy! This year’s event, which takes place on September 13th, 2015, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. in the Ann Arbor Farmers Market, is centered on “Old Friends,” and the Kerrytown Bookfest has invited back some very popular speakers from our past to anchor the program.
Noted Michigan writers Bonnie Jo Campbell and Thomas Lynch will kick off the day with a special ticketed breakfast beginning at 9:30 a.m. in the Zingerman’s Events on 4th space at the Kerrytown Market & Shops.
Our featured speaker of the day is Mary Doria Russell, award winning author of The Sparrow, Doc, Epitaph and A Thread of Grace. Russell is known for conducting exhaustive research for her novels, so it won’t come as a surprise that she holds a Ph.D in Biological Anthropology from the University of Michigan. Science Fiction Encyclopedia chief editor John Clute describes Russell as an “author who established a strong reputation for cognitive subtlety and narrative power…” Kirkus reviews called her first novel, The Sparrow, “A brilliant first novel,” and she’s been nominated twice for a Pulitzer Prize, as well as an IMPAC Dublin Literary Prize. Ms. Russell will discuss “From Mayhem to the Movies: How the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral Became Folklore,” as well as her new novel, Epitaph.
We will present our annual Community Book Award at 11 a.m. in the Main Tent. Each year, the Bookfest selects a person to recognize for their ongoing commitment to the book community in Ann Arbor. This year’s recipient is local realtor Ed Surovell. As Kerrytown Bookfest President Robin Agnew says, “Edward Surovell was chosen for his invaluable commitment to Ann Arbor’s book community; especially his avid support for the Ann Arbor District Library.” Appropriately, Ann Arbor District Library Director Josie Parker will present the award after an introduction from Ann Arbor Observer Editor, John Hilton.
Throughout the day, other old friends join the program, including bestselling mystery writers Julie Hyzy and Denise Swanson, Janet Webster Jones of Source Booksellers in Detroit, and Michael Byers, Laura Kasischke and Doug Trevor of the University of Michigan. Suspense writers Andrew Grant and P.J. Parrish will be here, as well as mystery historian Jeffrey Marks. And, of course, Laura Pershin Raynor and perennial favorite Mother Goose return to the children’s tent.
This year, as every year, we welcome several new friends, including thriller writer Owen Laukkanen, mystery novelist G.M. Malliet, YA author David James, and short story writer and novelist, Darrin Doyle. For those interested in poetry, we’re very pleased to have Casey Rocheteau, as well Scott Beal and Scott Ellsworth, both of the University of Michigan, and we’re featuring a poetry slam panel with popular Ann Arborite Jeff Kass, director of the Neutral Zone teen center. And if all that weren’t enough,
Ann Arbor’s Vault of Midnight owner Curtis Sullivan will lead a Comics panel discussion, MacArthur Genius Grant winner Tiya Miles will head up a Debut Novel panel, and, in a nod to the new millennium, a panel of young adult writers will discuss promotion through the use of social media. We’re also very happy to present our writer-in-residence, John Smolens, a frequent Kerrytown Bookfest speaker and well-known author, who will be critiquing pre-submitted manuscripts throughout the day.
This year’s festival will feature over one hundred vendors of used, rare, and new books, and for those interested in the craft of making books, the Guild of Bookworkers will be conducting book arts demonstrations throughout the day, and visitors will be able to try their own hand at letterpress printing. There will be a talk on the “Art of French Cartonage” and “Edible Books.”
And speaking of edible books, we’re sponsoring an Edible Book Contest where books are interpreted though food. This is a fun, family-friendly event that invites participants to create edible (usually cake) creations based on books. The entries are exhibited, judged, documented, and eaten! The entries will be on display all day, and judging will take place between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.
Other speakers and guests include Kayla Coughlin, Amanda Flower, Andrea Hannah, Lisa Lenzo, Edith Maxwell, Raymond McDaniel, Monica McFawn, Jenny Milchman, Greer Macallister, Bethany Neal, Aline Ohanesian, Vu Tran, Scott Woods, Nick Yribar and Lara Zielin.
Please click on the EVENT tab above for full event lineup, schedule, and details.
There’s something for everyone at the 13th Annual Kerrytown Bookfest, and we hope to see you there!