This year at the Kerrytown BookFest we’ll have a special booth — #113 – devoted to The Book I Love where visitors can let us know about their favorite book. Earlier we asked the 2016 BookFest speakers to let us know about their favorites, and this time we’ve asked the BookFest Board members and some of our 2016 exhibitors to tell us about the book they love.
Jamie Agnew (exhibitor as co-owner of Aunt Agatha’s): Raintree County by Ross Lockridge: “It’s the great American novel, but nobody knows it.”
Robin Agnew (President of the Kerrytown BookFest Board and exhibitor as co-owner of Aunt Agatha’s): Death of a Peer, by Ngaio Marsh. “I love this book because every time I read it, the characters come back off the page, into my head, and back to life. The story is ingenious, of course, but I also love this portrait of a family, of wartime London, and I love Marsh’s great ability to humorously and swiftly set a scene and describe a character. It still makes me tear up to read about the young New Zealand woman finding herself in the hurly burly of London for the first time. It’s a murder story, but also an awakening story. A perfect book, as far as I’m concerned. I’ve read it 10 times at a minimum.”
Megan Blackshear (exhibitor as co-owner of BookBound): A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra. “This unforgettable novel takes place around the turn of the 21st century in Chechnya. It has verything – well-developed, sympathetic characters, an intricate and satisfying plot, and stunning prose that begs to be read over and over.”
Peter Blackshear (Kerrytown BookFest Board member and exhibitor as co-owner of BookBound): The Phantom Tollbooth, by Norton Juster. “I was already a bibliophile when one of my elementary school teachers read this to the class. However, that was when I first consciously realized that words can be playground and started reading not only for plot and characters (or information), but also for the language itself.”
E.A. Comiskey (exhibitor): “There are dozens of books I love, but the one that stands out above the rest is Into the Forest, by Jean Hegland. It is beautifully written and engaging, but what gives it a special place in my heart is that it is the first book that opened my eyes to the reality of how fragile our modern society is, and how powerfully resilient and resourceful humans are. It changed the way I see the world and my place in it. The experience of having my worldview shifted by a book kindled a fire in my heart to be a writer.”
Sharon Gambin (Vice President of the Kerrytown BookFest Board): Medicine Walk by Richard Wagamese. “I discovered Medicine Walk earlier this year and I was captivated immediately by the powerful storylines rendered in some of the most beautifully descriptive language I’ve read in years. I am now working my way through this gifted wordsmith’s earlier works.”
Hilary Gustafson (exhibitor as co-owner of Literati): Too Loud a Solitude by Bohumil Hrabal: “…the message and memory of the book lives on in the mind and in the thoughts and ideas they produce. A must-read for any bibliophile.”
John Hilton (Secretary of the Kerrytown BookFest Board): Rocannon’s World, by Ursula K. LeGuin. “It humbly shared a fifty-cent “Ace Double” bought more or less at random from a small-town newsstand when I was fourteen. Setting generously imagined characters in worlds crafted with an anthropologist’s intelligence, it made me a lifelong LeGuin fan.”
Kate Kehoe (Treasurer of the Kerrytown BookFest Board and exhibitor as ChicalooKate): Griffin and Sabine Trilogy by Nick Bantock. “I can’t begin to say how much I love these books. The artwork is as beautiful and bizarre as the story. I just wanted to fall in to the pages. I loved the interactive nature of the correspondence, physically taking out the letters to read made me ridiculously happy. It helped me to see you didn’t have to follow the normal pattern with art or writing. This series has survived many many book purges and have a place front and center in my library.”
Check back here next week for even more favorite books by exhibitors and Board members. When you’re at BookFest please stop by booth 113 to tell us about the book that you love. We’ll also be collecting your favorite books online and will be using them throughout the year. If you’d like to tell us about the book you love now you can use the online form found here. Thanks, and see you at the Kerrytown BookFest on September 11!