National Book Festival: Special events and signings


Elizabeth Mitchell (Edward Smith/Edward Smith)
August 22

10-10:45 Valerie Miles, an American writer, editor and translator who lives in Spain, is the co-founder of Granta en español. An English translation of her book “A Thousand Forests in One Acorn” — a collection of works by and interviews with influential Spanish-language authors such as Mario Vargas Llosa and Carlos Fuentes — will be published in Sept. Signing at 1.

10:50-11:20 Former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan will talk about the state of the economy with David Rubenstein, co-founder and chief executive of the Carlyle Group and co-chair of the National Book Festival. Greenspan, who led the Fed from 1987 until 2006, works as a private consultant. 11:30-12:35 Letters About Literature More than 50,000 young readers from across the country participated in this year’s Letters About Literature initiative, a reading and writing contest sponsored by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress that asks children in grades four through 12 to read a book, poem or speech and write to its author. Two winners will read their letters.

12:45-1:30 Bethesda native Henry Hodges has spent much of his young life on stage. His work in theater includes roles in Broadway productions of “Beauty and the Beast,” “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” and “Mary Poppins.” In his book “How to Act Like a Kid: Backstage Secrets of a Young Performer,” with Margaret Engel, Hodges gives young readers advice on open calls, auditions, rehearsals, dance and voice classes — and how to do homework in green rooms.Margaret Engel is a journalist and playwright who lives in Bethesda. A former Washington Post reporter, she is the co-author of books on baseball and regional food and runs the Alicia Patterson Journalism Foundation.Signing at 2.

1:40-2:25 Bob Adelman is one of the foremost photographers of the American civil rights movement. His book “King: A Photobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.” documents the civil rights leader and his times. His new book, “Andy Warhol’s First Fifteen Minutes,” features photographs of the pop artist and his milieu before the peak of his fame. Signing at noon.

2:35-3:20 The Statue of Liberty may be one of the world’s most recognizable symbols, but according to Elizabeth Mitchell, the tale of its creation has been obscured by myth. In “Liberty’s Torch: The Great Adventure to Build the Statue of Liberty,”Mitchell tells the real story behind the American icon. Signing at 4.

3:30-4:15 James Conaway’s books include the novel “Nose,” set in northern California’s wine country, and “Vanishing America: In Pursuit of Our Elusive Landscapes.” His latest work is “The Forgotten Fifties: America’s Decade from the Archives of Look Magazine.” The Look archives are held in the Library of Congress’s Prints and Photographs Division. Conaway will appear with Amy Pastan, an independent editor and book packager formerly of the National Gallery of Art and the Smithsonian Institution Press, andTom Wiener, a writer-editor at the Library of Congress.Signing at 5.

4:25-5:10 Clay Risen is an editor with the New York Times op-ed section. He is the author of “A Nation on Fire: America in the Wake of the King Assassination” and “American Whiskey, Bourbon and Rye: A Guide to the Nation’s Favorite Spirit.” His newest book is “The Bill of the Century: The Epic Battle for the Civil Rights Act.”Signing at 3.

5:20-6 Derek Anderson began his basketball career at Ohio State University and the University of Kentucky, where he helped lead his team to an NCAA championship in 1996. He later played for a host of NBA teams, including the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Portland Trail Blazers and the Charlotte Bobcats. His book “Stamina” tells the story of a child who rose from poverty to become a champion in the NCAA, Olympics and NBA. Signing at 4.

6-7:30 Centennial of Three Mexican Literary Legends. Marcelo Uribe and Coral Bracho lead a discussion on the works of three giants of Mexican literature: the poets Octavio Paz and Efraín Huerta and the novelist José Revueltas, all of whom were born in 1914. This presentation is co-sponsored by the Mexican Cultural Institute.

8-9:30 Great Books to Great Movies. Ann Hornaday, film critic for The Washington Post, hosts a discussion with novelists E.L. Doctorow, Alice McDermott, Paul Auster and Lisa See. This presentation, hosted by the Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division of the Library of Congress, will include film clips from movies based on books.

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