The following events this week are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted. This is not a complete listing. For additional events, see Bookshop on our pages or log on to

29 Monday

7 P.M. Fiction writers Joe Meno, author of the new novel How the Hula Girl Sings, Marlon James, author of the new novel John Crow's Devil, and local musician Billups Allen, author of the horror novella Unfurnished, read from and discuss their work at Olsson's-Dupont, 1307 19th St. NW, 202-785-1133.

31 Wednesday

6 P.M. Alexandra Robbins discusses and signs Pledged: The Secret Life of Sororities at Barnes & Noble-Metro Center, 555 12th St. NW, 202-347-0176.

1 Thursday

6:30 P.M. Joe Formichella discusses and signs Here's to You, Jackie Robinson: The Legend of the Prichard Mohawks, his account of the all-black amateur baseball team that played in Mobile, Ala., during the mid-1950s to late 1960s, at Karibu Books-Bowie Town Center, 15624 Emerald Way, 301-559-1140. He will be joined by Jesse Norwood Jr., son of the Alabama businessman who originally established the team as a way to keep neighborhood kids out of trouble.

7 P.M. Mel Belin, Judith McCombs and Rosemary Winslow read from their work as part of the monthly poetry series at Mayorga Coffee, 8201 Wisconsin Ave., Bethesda, Md. An open reading follows; call 301-907-3081 or e-mail for details.

2 Friday

7:30 P.M. Northern Virginia Writers begins its new season of "First Friday" workshops with Richard McCann, co-director of American University's MFA in Creative Writing program, discussing "cross-training your writing" at the Leesburg Town Hall, 25 W. Market St., Leesburg, Va. Refreshments, with an opportunity to network with other writers, follow. Admission is $4 for Leesburg residents, $6 for the general public. For details, call 301-654-8664, e-mail or visit

Coming Book Festivals

The approach of the fall season heralds not only back to school and the return of business as usual in Washington, but a slew of book festivals, some already staples on the local literary scene and newer ones hoping to make their mark. First up is the 7th annual Fall for the Book Festival, being held September 14-21 on the grounds of George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. The event presents a wide array of workshops, panel discussions and programs, including some for children, and the chance to hear and meet a bevy of prominent authors. They include: Walter Mosley, who will introduce his newest Easy Rawlins mystery, Cinnamon Kiss; National Book Award-winner Tim O'Brien, author of The Things They Carried and In the Lake of the Woods; Rick Moody, author of the new novel The Diviners; Khaled Hosseini, author of the book-club favorite The Kite Runner; Mary Kay Zuravleff, author of the recent novel The Bowl Is Already Broken; Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Doug Marlette; and Pat Conroy, author of the popular novels The Prince of Tides and The Great Santini, who will receive the festival's "Fall for the Book Prize," an inaugural honor established to recognize a writer whose work has made significant strides in bringing literature to a wider audience and influencing a younger generation of writers. For a complete schedule, visit

The 2005 National Book Festival, organized by the Library of Congress, hosted by First Lady Laura Bush, and sponsored by The Washington Post, will be held on Saturday, Sept. 24, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the National Mall between Seventh St. & 14th St. NW, rain or shine. More than 80 authors, poets and illustrators are scheduled to attend, including Sandra Brown, Meg Cabot, E.L. Doctorow, Neil Gaiman, Tony Hillerman, John Irving, Sue Monk Kidd, David McCullough and Tom Wolfe. Readings and signings will take place in various theme pavilions, including "Children," "History and Biography," "Mysteries and Thrillers," "Fiction and Fantasy," "Home and Family" and "Poetry." The "Pavilion of the States" will be host to representatives from libraries and book-related organizations from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. overseas territories and dependencies highlighting reading and literacy programs and volunteer opportunities. The Library of Congress's own pavilion will feature the Veterans History Project, a grassroots effort to document veterans' stories from World War I through the current conflict. A complete schedule, including regular updates, is available at

The debut of Capital BookFest will take place on Saturday, October 1, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Blvd @ Cap Centre in Landover, Md., adjacent to FedEx Field. This multi-cultural event is designed to showcase the diverse authors in the metropolitan region and will feature author readings and signings, panel discussions, children's storytelling, a teen poetry slam and vendor exhibits focusing on everything from self-publishing to literacy. Some of the authors scheduled to attend include Connie Briscoe, Christopher Chambers, Sharon Bell Mathis, Brenda Rhodes-Miller and NYC chef Richard Jones. For complete details, e-mail or visit

Special Notices

The McLean, Va. branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) will hold a used book sale Sept. 16-18 at the McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave., McLean, Va. Hours are Friday, Sept. 16, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday, Sept. 17, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, Sept. 18, 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. On Saturday, local writers Carole Herrick, author of August 24, 1814: Washington in Flames, Julie Shields, author of How to Avoid the Mommy Trap: A Roadmap for Sharing Parenting and Making It Work, and Willard J. and Anne C. Webb, authors of The Glebe Houses of Colonial Virginia, will be on hand to sign their work in two-hour intervals: 10 a.m. to noon, noon to 2 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., respectively. For more details, call 703-726-6470 or visit

The Friends of the Northeast Library, at 330 Seventh St. NE, will hold a used book sale on Saturday, Sept. 17, from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Call 202-698-3320 for details.