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August2009
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A Chapter a Day Keeps the Boredom at Bay

“Are you there God, it’s me, Margaret.” – Judy Blume, book of the same name

“We need more butter!” – Paula Deen, on everything

“Reader, you must know that an interesting fate awaits almost everyone, mouse or man, who does not conform.” – Kate DiCamillo, “The Tale of Despereaux”

“My decision to become a lawyer was irrevocably sealed when I realized my father hated the legal profession.” – John Grisham, “The Rainmaker”

The 2009 National Book Festival Poster by Charles Santore 2008 festival grounds in the shadow of the U.S. Capitol, with a rainbow falling upon the green dome of the Library of Congress

A good book draws you in. A good speaker entices you to appreciate his or her message and interests. For the ninth year in a row, the Library of Congress provides just those opportunities at the National Book Festival, on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2009, on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., between 7th and 14th Streets from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (rain or shine). The event, for which the Honorary Chairs are President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama, is free and open to the public. More than 120,000 people attended the festival last year.

Celebrating the joys of reading and lifelong literacy has always been the event’s platform. Scores of authors will join those quoted above in featured pavilions including Children, Teens & Children, History & Biography, Fiction & Fantasy, Mysteries & Thrillers and Poetry & Prose. In addition, festival-goers can meet and hear firsthand from their favorite authors, purchase books by festival authors, get books signed by authors, have photos taken with PBS storybook characters and participate in a variety of fun learning activities.

The Pavilion of the States will represent reading- and literacy-promotion programs and literary events in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. trusts and territories. The popular Let’s Read America pavilions will offer reading activities that are fun for the whole family.

The poster for the National Book Festival has been illustrated by noted author/artist Charles Santore of Philadelphia. His "William the Curious" won a Storytelling World honor in 1999 from Storytelling magazine, and he was awarded a gold medal from the Original Art Show in 2000 for his book "A Stowaway on Noah’s Ark." Santore’s work is included in the permanent collections of the Brandywine Museum and the Museum of Modern Art.

The 2009 National Book Festival is made possible through the support of Target, the Distinguished Benefactor; Charter Sponsor The Washington Post; Patrons AT&T, Institute of Museum and Library Services, The James Madison Council, the National Endowment for the Arts; Contributors Borders, the Library of Congress Federal Credit Union, PBS, Penguin Group (USA), ReadAloud.org, Scholastic Inc. and US Airways; and Friends The Hay-Adams Hotel and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

A list of participating authors, illustrators and poets, their books and activities in each presentation pavilion can be found on the National Book Festival website. There, you can also check out webcasts and details of past festivals.


A. The 2009 National Book Festival Poster by Charles Santore. Library of Congress. Reproduction Information: Reproduction information not available.

B. 2008 festival grounds in the shadow of the U.S. Capitol, with a rainbow falling upon the green dome of the Library of Congress. Photo by Gail Fineberg. Library of Congress. Reproduction Information: Reproduction information not available.