Tag Archives: National Book Festival

“Your Bridge to History” by Portia and Preston Love, Jr. to Represent Nebraska at National Book Festival

A children’s picture book that encourages children to know their history will represent Nebraska at the 2021 National Book Festival. The Nebraska Center for the Book selected Your Bridge to History by Portia Love and Preston Love, Jr. (‎Preston Publishing, 2019) as the state’s selection for the National Book Festival’s Great Reads from Great Places programing. Each state selects one book about the state, or by an author from the state, that is a good read for children or young adults. The book will be featured in the Great Reads from Great Places – History Edition author panel, which will be available September 17th on the websites of both the National Book Festival and Nebraska Center for the Book. The National Book Festival will run Sept. 17-26, with the theme “Open a Book, Open the World.”

This book, written by Portia and Preston Love, Jr. and illustrated by Regina Jeanpierre, takes you along with the Black Votes Matter Tour across the American South. The characters tour sites where individuals and organizations focus on Civil Rights, Voting Rights, and Black History in the United States. Beautiful illustrations depict the pictures the tour participants experienced along the way. QR codes are included to take readers to websites that are important to further learning. Nebraska’s Great Reads from Great Places book is chosen from the previous year’s Nebraska Book Award winners and this book was awarded the 2020 Nebraska Book Award in the Children’s Picture Book category. Entries for the Nebraska Book Awards are accepted every year between March 1st and June 30th – see http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/awards/nebookawards.html.

The National Book Festival will feature virtual and live presentations by award-winning authors, poets, and illustrators. One such featured author is Nebraskan, Roxanne Gay. Gay’s presentation will be available September 17th on the festival’s Video On-Demand page. We encourage all Nebraskans to tune in for both author talks and experience two voices representing our state’s literary heritage. Find out more about the 2021 National Book Festival (including a list of featured authors) at www.loc.gov/events/2021-national-book-festival/about-this-event/.  

The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book, supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the Book is supported by the Nebraska Library Commission.  

As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, bringing together people and information.  


The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases .  

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Coronavirus forces National Book Festival to shift to online-only format this year

One of Washington’s most cherished events has been felled by the novel coronavirus. The National Book Festival, set to celebrate its 20th anniversary this year, will not be held as planned, the Library of Congress announced Thursday.

The literary extravaganza, which in recent years has drawn an estimated 200,000 people to the Washington Convention Center, was scheduled for Aug. 29. But due to the ongoing covid-19 crisis, the presentations by scores of best-selling and award-winning authors will be moved to the weekend of Sept. 25-27 and presented online only.

The news had been expected, but still came as a disappointment. With authors unable to travel amid social distancing restrictions, most major literary festivals this year have been canceled or shifted online.

Appropriately, the theme of this year’s National Book Festival is “American Ingenuity,” a quality that will be required to effectively reimagine the event in a new virtual format. A statement from the library notes that the move online will “serve a global audience and demonstrate how authors and their stories help to connect and illuminate the world.”

Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden issued a statement saying, “Although we cannot hold our usual National Book Festival, which attracts more than 200,000 attendees of all ages, I believe this virtual festival has the potential to convey the same spirit of inventiveness and creativity to an even wider book-loving community.”

This year’s list of authors includes novelists, historians, poets and children’s authors such as Madeleine Albright, John Grisham, Colson Whitehead, Melinda Gates, Kate DiCamillo, Poet Laureate Joy Harjo and National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Jason Reynolds.

The festival, which was started in 2001 under the direction of then-first lady Laura Bush, has been underwritten in recent years by Washington-area philanthropist David M. Rubenstein.

The Washington Post is a charter sponsor of the festival.

Thursday, May 28, 2020 | www.washingtonpost.com

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