Exciting literary events are taking place this fall in Richardson, Laredo, and Georgetown. Each program has been engaging readers and promoting page-turning for over a decade. Humanities Texas has been a consistent supporter of these events, helping to establish them as well-loved annual traditions in their respective communities. Learn more about these upcoming programs below.
In 2019, Richardson Reads One Book celebrates sixteen years of community-wide book discussions. Each year, the Richardson Public Library and the City of Richardson select one book for the city to read, encouraging individuals and groups throughout the community to come together around a shared literary experience. Past years' selections include works by esteemed authors such as Dave Eggers, Chitra Divakaruni, Jodi Picoult, and Khaled Hosseini.
This year's novel, Bluebird, Bluebird by Attica Locke, follows Darren Mathews, a black Texas Ranger, as he tries to solve two murders in a small East Texas town riven by racial tension. Locke, a Houston-born author and producer of television and film, will speak about the novel and sign books at Richardson High School on the evening of September 24, 2019. Tickets are free, and the event is open to the public.
For more information, visit the Richardson Reads One Book website.
On October 4 and 5, 2019, Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) and the Laredo Public Library will hold the twelfth iteration of Reading the Globe, a popular annual city-wide reading program. The initiative encourages students, faculty, staff, and the wider Laredo community to read a book focused on a particular country and international topic that "raises social awareness on a local and global scale." Each year, a select group of TAMIU students are given the opportunity to visit the country selected for that year's Reading the Globe program. Previous destinations include Cambodia, India, South Africa, Chile, and Ghana.
The 2019 book selection, Never Stop Walking: A Memoir of Finding Home Across the World by Christina Rickardsson, follows the author from her destitute childhood in a Brazilian favela to her adoption by a family living in northern Sweden. Christina later revisits Brazil as an adult to confront her past life in hopes of better understanding her identity. Through reading and discussing the book, community members will have a chance to learn about the history of Brazil and the challenges and ongoing issues Brazilians face, such as extreme poverty and inequality.
Reading the Globe: Brazil will culminate in two author events with Christina Rickardsson. The first will take place on October 4 on the TAMIU campus and is free and open to the TAMIU community. On October 5, Rickardsson will give a public lecture at Laredo's Joe A. Guerra Public Library; this program is open to all who are interested.
For more information visit the Reading the Globe website.
The Texas Teen Book Festival (TTBF), an annual event celebrating the teen reading experience, returns for its eleventh year on Saturday, October 12, 2019, at Southwestern University in Georgetown.
The TTBF has become one of the largest book festivals for teens in the country. Each year, the program includes author sessions and panels, book signings, workshops, and vendor displays. The 2019 lineup features award-winning and bestselling authors such as Mary H. K. Choi, David Yoon, Gabby Rivera, Abdi Nazemian, Christopher Myers, Lauren Shippen, and others. This year's keynote speakers are authors Akilah Hughes and Erika L. Sánchez.
In addition to numerous author events, TTBF also offers writing workshops for attendees. Festival author Alex Temblador and Leticia Urieta, director of Barrio Writers, will hold a workshop for teens to read, reflect, and write. The Austin Public Library Foundation's Badgerdog Creative Writing Program will conduct a fiction workshop on developing writing and creativity in graphic storytelling.
Julie Wernersbach, TTBF literary director, says, "Now that the Texas Teen Book Festival has reached its eleventh year, it's amazing to see how many of the attendees keep coming back, not only to meet authors, but to volunteer at the Fest, intern at our organization, and stay involved with this event. TTBF has grown so much over the years, across several different locations, and it's because of these festival goers that its spirit has stayed true to its founding and we can continue to offer the same valuable opportunity for readers and authors to connect and share in memorable conversations, signings, and moments of community."
The Texas Teen Book Festival is a collaboration of the Texas Book Festival, BookPeople, librarian volunteers, and venue sponsor Southwestern University. For more information visit the TTBF website.
Humanities Texas grants enable communities throughout the state to develop programs of local interest promoting heritage, culture, and education. Since 1974, we have awarded more than 3,800 grants supporting a wide range of public humanities programs, including lectures, oral history projects, museum exhibitions, teacher institutes, reading programs, and documentary films. To learn more, visit the Grants section of our website.