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Library of Congress Set to Host Annual Book Fair

The Library of Congress will hold its 17th annual National Book Fair next month, supplying for the first time access to all main stage presentations on Facebook Live.

The Sept. 2 event will take place at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center from 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m., with over 100 authors alongside a plethora of illustrators and poets and special remarks from Carla Hayden, the first black woman to serve as librarian of Congress.

“There is an incredible of authors appearing at this years annual festival,” Hayden said in a statement. “This will be quite a year. It’s going to be something. It’s all free and thank you all for joining.”

Set to open the festival’s main stage will be Condoleezza Rice, the first female black woman to serve as secretary of state, featuring her latest book “Democracy,” which focuses on the global struggle for democracy and why America must continue to support the cause of human freedom.

Pulitzer Prize winner David McCullough will also discuss his new book, “The American Spirit: Who We Are and What We Stand For.”

For younger readers, Newbery Medalist Kwame Alexander, who specializes in writing poetry and children’s fiction, will be on hand to speak to teens about poetic verses and hold a “poetry slam” session.

Former NFL player and NASA astronaut Leland Melvin will also join the festival, celebrating his new book “Chasing Space: An Astronaut’s Story of Grit, Grace, and Second Chances, Chasing Space Young Readers’ Edition.”

“The more that I thought about it, this journey of a skinny black kid, from a small Southern town going into space with all the other things happening in our country and the world, the more I thought about telling an inspirational story of hope, second chances, and grace,” Leland said.

The library has launched a free updated National Book Festival app, which provides a complete schedule of author talks, book signings, special presentations and fun activities. Additional information can also be found at loc.gov/bookfest/schedule.

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Lauren M. Poteat

Lauren Poteat is a versatile writer with a strong background in communications and media experience with an additional background in education and development.

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