6th Annual Nantucket Book Festival Features Weekend of Author Readings, June 16-18

NANTUCKET, MA—The Nantucket Book Festival, a summer destination for booklovers, features a stellar line-up of authors and events for its upcoming Festival, June 16-18. Readers will gather in historic Nantucket venues for author readings, panel discussions, and social events that provide unique opportunities to engage with their favorite authors—a hallmark of the Festival. Most events are free with the exception of ticketed social events.

The Opening Night Celebration, Open Books, Open Minds: Writing to Cross Borders, on Friday evening features Diane Rehm, Will Schwalbe, and Kevin Young, speaking on the role of writing as a way to interpret and clarify personal, political, and global divisions.

Throughout the weekend, which begins on Friday morning, authors of many genres and subjects will present, highlighted by: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson (The Warmth of Other Suns); US Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky; Diane Rehm (On My Own) who will discuss her memoir about reconstructing her life after the death of her husband; Ruth Reichl, former editor in chief of Gourmet Magazine whose latest book, My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes that Saved My Life, extols the power of cooking to cure many of life’s ills; and New York Times Best Selling authors Amor Towles (A Gentleman in Moscow), Carl Safina (Beyond Words), and Marie Arana (American Chica).

Two New England poets will be featured through their biographers: Megan Marshall (Elizabeth Bishop: A Miracle for Breakfast) and Kay Redfield Jamison who will discuss her psychological portrait of Robert Lowell (Robert Lowell: Setting the River on Fire). Crowd favorites Alice Hoffman and Jodi Picoult will be returning to the Festival. A complete listing of authors is at www.nantucketbookfestival.org.

For younger readers, the Festival offers an exceptional line-up, including a breakfast with Laurie Halse Anderson (The Seeds of America Trilogy) and Nathaniel Philbrick, who will discuss his new book, Ben’s Revolution: Benjamin Russell and the Battle of Bunker Hill, written from a child’s perspective. Other authors for younger readers include Lynda Mullaly Hunt, Bill Konigsberg, James Sulzer and Wendy Rouillard. For the youngest set, there will be story times in the Atheneum Garden tent on Friday from 9:00-1:00pm in seven languages.

To highlight the active literary community on the island, the Festival will feature local authors under the tent outdoors at the Nantucket Atheneum selling and signing their books during the day on Saturday. The ever-popular Typewriter Rodeo will be on hand to write free poems on-demand on their vintage typewriters.

Tickets are now on sale for author-hosted social events, which include:

  • Friday: breakfast with Nathaniel Philbrick and Laurie Halse Anderson (kids free); luncheon with Michelle Gable, Mary Alice Monroe and Nancy Thayer; and the Nantucket Book Festival Authors Dinner at the Brant Point Grill at the White Elephant Inn, a fundraiser for the Festival.
  • Saturday: luncheon hosted by Sarah Leah Chase (sold out), and James Gleick will host Tea and Time Travel at the Community School. 
  • Sunday : breakfast with Ruth Reichl; a wine tasting with Bianca Bosker (sold out) and the annual Cisco Brewers Send Off event in the afternoon (free) will feature music, food, author mingling, and of course brews. An evening closing event, Wild Places and Human Dignity, with PBS host Carl Safina at the NHA Whaling Museum will wrap up the Festival in the evening. 

A complete listing of all authors and tickets for all ticketed events are available at www.nantucketbookfestival.org.

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