CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK)—The 2021 West Virginia Book Festival, which will be held at the Charleston Coliseum and Convention Center on October 22 and 23, will feature presentations from bestselling national, local, and regional authors as well as writing workshops, family activities, a literary marketplace, and a used book sale. The festival is free and open to the public.
This year’s headlining author lineup will feature the following authors:
- Colson Whitehead has published six novels, including “The Intuitionist” and “The Underground Railroad,” for which he won a National Book Award for Fiction in 2016 and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2017. In 2020, he won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction again for “The Nickel Boys,” a story of two African American boys who attend a horrific reform school in Jim Crow-era Florida.
- Josh Malerman wrote the novel “Bird Box,” and he is also one of the two singers/songwriters for the rock band The High Strung. “Bird Box” won the Michigan Notable Book Award and was nominated for the James Herbert Award and Bram Stoker Award for Best First Novel. It was also adapted into an original film, which streamed on Netflix. Malerman’s other novels include “Black Mad Wheel,” “Goblin,” “Unbury Carol,” and “Inspection.”
- Jon Scieszka is known for his bestselling picture books “The True Story of the Three Little Pigs!” and “The Stinky Cheese Man.” He also founded www.guysread.com and championed www.guyslisten.com. In 2008, he became the first U.S. National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature in 2008.
- Eric Eyre is a former reporter for the Charleston Gazette-Mail. In 2017, he won the Pulitzer Prize in Investigative Reporting for his work covering the flood of opioids flowing into West Virginia. His book, “Death in Mud Lick: A Coal Country Fight Against the Drug Companies That Delivered the Opioid Epidemic” dives deeper into the story of a pharmacy in Kermit, West Virginia that distributed 12 million pain pills to a town with a population of 382 in three years.
- Denise Giardina is an award-winning novelist and a former Mountain Party gubernatorial candidate. She wrote “Storming Heaven,” which received the 1987 W.D. Weatherford Award for Best Published Work about the Appalachian South. Her book “Unquiet Earth” received an American Book Award and Lillian Smith Book Award for Fiction. She has also written columns for the Charleston Gazette-Mail and The Washington Post.
The Book Festival is accepting program proposals and marketplace vendor applications, both of which are due by March 15. These applications are available on the Book Festival website.
The event’s sponsors include The Kanawha County Public Library, The Library Foundation of Kanawha County, Inc., The West Virginia Humanities Council, and The Charleston Gazette-Mail, West Virginia Public Broadcasting, The West Virginia Library Commission, The Center for the Book, The H. B. Wehrle Foundation, The Marshall University Foundation, The Friends of The Library, and Encova.