01/14/2019 Press Release from the Virginia Center for the Book:

January 14, 2019—Charlottesville, Va.—The Virginia Festival of the Book—a program of Virginia Humanities celebrating its 25th year of bringing writers and readers together to promote and celebrate books, reading, literacy, and literary culture—today announced the schedule for the 2019 Festival, including more than 100 programs, across genres, that are FREE to attend and open to the public. 
The Festival will be held March 20-24, 2019, and the schedule is searchable by topic on VaBook.org/Schedule. Some highlights include: 

  • American Addictions: Our Opioids Crisis—Wed., March 20, 2:00-3:30 PM—Beth Macy (Dopesick) and Chris McGreal (American Overdose) share the results of their many years of reporting on America’s opioid epidemic. 
  • Ruth King: Mindful of Race—Wed., March 20, 6:00-7:30 PM—Internationally renowned meditation teacher Ruth King (Mindful of Race) discusses racism, white supremacy, and identity. 
  • Southern Blues and Folklife Rekindled—Thu., March 21, 6:00-7:30 PM—Scott Barretta, William Ferris, and Tom Rankin discuss their collaborative effort in creating the Voices of Mississippi collection of southern musicians, storytellers, and writers. 
  • New Writing on Climate Change: A Dialogue on Responsibility—Fri., March 22, 2:00-3:30 PM— Mike Gunter Jr. (Tales of an Ecotourist), Susan Hand Shetterly (Seaweed Chronicles), and Rick Van Noy (Sudden Spring) discuss the threats of climate change and the impacts it has had, from Downeast Maine to the Gulf Coast of the American South, and across the globe. 
  • Overcoming the Odds: Biographies of Great American Leaders—Fri., March 22, 4:00-5:30 PM— Raymond Arsenault (Arthur Ashe) and David W. Blight (Frederick Douglass) discuss the lives of the famous African-American activist-leaders Arthur Ashe and Frederick Douglass. 
  • Cartels to Conspiracies: Friday Night Crime Wave—Fri., March 22, 8:00-9:30 PM—William Boyle (A Friend Is a Gift You Give Yourself), Stephen Mack Jones (Lives Laid Away), and Don Winslow (The Border) discuss their newest crime novels. 
  • Poetry of the Ephemeral—Fri., March 22, 8:00-9:30 PM—Sherwin Bitsui (Dissolve) and Diana Khoi Nguyen (Ghost Of) read from their latest works of poetry. 
  • Latinx Fiction for Young Readers—Sat., March 23, 12:00-1:30 PM—Hilda Eunice Burgos (Ana María Reyes Does Not Live in a Castle), Angela Dominguez (Galapagos Girl / Galapagueña), Mia García (The Resolutions), and Kristina Pérez (Sweet Black Waves) discuss the importance of Latinix fiction for young readers. 
  • Short Stories, Long on Meaning—Sat., March 23, 12:00-1:30 PM—Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah (Friday Black), Karen Bender (The New Order), and Chaya Bhuvaneswar (White Dancing Elephants) discuss their powerful collections of short stories, ranging from the lyrical and meditative to the bizarre and darkly dystopian. 
  • Finding Wisdom: A Letterpress Project—Sun., March 24, 1:00-2:30 PM—Printmaker Amos Paul Kennedy, Jr. (2019 Frank Riccio Artist-in-Residence) discusses his collaboration with the Virginia Center for the Book to produce an intergenerational project that celebrates words of wisdom shared by diverse residents of Charlottesville and Albemarle County. 
  • A World Built on Bondage: Racism and Human Diversity in Award-Winning Fiction—Sun., March 24, 3:00-4:30 PM—Esi Edugyan (Washington Black) and Kevin Powers (A Shout In The Ruins) discuss the meanings of race, violence, and freedom, as explored in their acclaimed historical novels. Edugyan and Powers each received the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for an earlier novel; they are accompanied in conversation with Award jury member Rita Dove. 
  • Additional details about these and other 2019 Festival programs are available on VaBook.org. 
  • The Virginia Festival of the Book is proud of its record of accessibility, affordability, and inclusivity. However, while nearly all Festival programs are free and open to the public without reservations, some will require tickets. Tickets are still available on VaBook.org for the following headliner programs: 
  • Read & Lead Lunch with Barbara Ehrenreich—Wed., March 20, 11:45 AM-1:30 PM at the Omni Hotel 
  • An Evening with Festival All-Stars: Lee Smith, Adriana Trigiani, and Douglas Brinkley—Wed., March 20, 8:00-9:30 PM at The Paramount Theater 
  • All of Our Rights: America’s Legacy of Inequality, featuring Carol Anderson, Michael Eric Dyson, and Martha S. Jones—Thu., March 21, 8:00 PM - 9:30 PM at The Paramount Theater 
  • Crime Wave Brunch with Don Winslow—Sat., March 23, 10:00-11:30 AM at the Omni Hotel 
  • Future Tense: Writers You’ll be Reading for the Next 25 Years, featuring Mitchell S. Jackson, José Olivarez, and Sarah Smarsh—Sat., March 23, 8:00-9:30 PM at The Paramount Theater 

About the Virginia Festival of the Book: A signature program of Virginia Humanities and the Virginia Center for the Book, the Virginia Festival of the Book brings readers and writers together for a five-day program of mostly free events including author readings, book signings, panel discussions, programs for children, and more. The 25th annual Festival will be held March 20-24, 2019, in Charlottesville and Albemarle County, Virginia. The Festival consistently attracts audiences of more than 20,000 from more than forty states each year, with an estimated local economic impact of about $4 million annually. To learn more, visit VaBook.org. 

About Virginia Humanities: Virginia Humanities connects people and ideas to inspire engagement and deepen mutual understanding. As the state humanities council, Virginia Humanities reaches millions in its estimated annual audience through festivals, grants, fellowships, digital initiatives, teacher institutes, radio programs, podcasts, apprenticeships, and school programs. Headquartered at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia Humanities endeavors to serve Virginians in every corner of the Commonwealth. To learn more, visit VirginiaHumanities.org.