SA Book Festival unveils lineup

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    Katy Flato, director of San Antonio Book Festival, discusses upcoming plans for the fifth annual San Antonio Book Festival taking place in April. (Photo, Christina Acosta)

    The San Antonio Book Festival (SABF) has released its lineup of more than 100 national, regional and local authors appearing at its fifth annual festival.

    SABF is a free, daylong, family-friendly event that attracts more than 18,000 festival goers to the Central Library for a day of literary activities from readings, panel discussions, book sales, recipe demonstrations, food, and children’s and teen activities.  It will take place on Saturday, April 8 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Central Library and Southwest School of Art.

    It is free and open to the public and a full schedule of events will be released in March. For now, book worms will be welcomed with authors including New York Times Best Selling Author Ann Patchett representing her story “Commonwealth,” Amor Towels with “A Gentleman in Moscow,” Pulitzer Prize Winner Lawrence Wright with “The Terror Years: From Al-Queda to the Islamic State” and many more.

    “When we first launched this [festival], we really did not know what we were doing, and we really did not have anybody in our team,” said Katy Flato, director of San Antonio Book Festival. “We have built up a group of staff, donors, volunteers and a governing board in five years… In addition to having the largest lineup ever accomplished, we are at 103 authors and still counting.”

    SABF, the signature program of the San Antonio Public Library Foundation (SAPLF), was first presented in April 2013 with the Texas Book Festival. In 2016, there was a 7.3 percent increase in visitors to the Central Library compared to the 2015 festival.

    To add hype this year, SABF highlights will include:

    • Panel topics including women who fight back; love’s ability to transcend borders regardless of political fervor about immigration; and visionary writers among other topics.
    • The Mayors Book Club session with Mayor Ivy Taylor and Jan Jarboe Russel, author of Mayor’s Book Club selection, “The Train to Crystal City”
    • A performance by Magik Theatre for kids.

    “The daily news has brought an intensity and anxiety into our lives, regardless of your political affiliation. Books including non-fiction, fiction and children’s stories give us context, insight and help us stay grounded,” said Clay Smith, the SABF literary director.

    Additional information about the festival can be found at www.saplf.org/festival.

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