Paula Deen, Lisa Loeb, Two Chucks: Texas Book Festival announces theirstar-studded lineup
The Texas Book Festival announced their list of attending authors for this year's festival. And like always, it's gonna be one huge lit party.
From local to international writers, young adult writers to nonfiction political commentators, there's something for every reader at this year's event, held Oct 22-23 in and around the Texas State Capitol.
Food Network star Paula Deen is one delightful surprise for many TBF regulars. The host of Paula's Home Cooking is also a noted cookbook author, so her brand of Southern hospitality is sure to draw a huge crowd of chefs and kitchen-phobics alike. Her most recent tome is called Paula Deen's Southern Cooking Bible. I haven't touched it, but I can already tell you, I'm ready to convert.
Other huge names in the world of entertainment include comedian Molly Shannon and musician Lisa Loeb. Shannon, now the author of children's book Tilly the Trickster, will also be part of the TBF First Edition Literary Gala held on Oct 21 at the Four Seasons Hotel. Loeb is likewise the author of a children's book called Lisa Loeb's Silly Sing-Along which is accompanied by a CD full of new music.
For the more adult readers, bestselling fiction writers Russell Banks (author of Lost Memory of Skin) and Karen Russell (Swamplandia!) will be on some much-anticipated panels to discuss their latest works. Banks has been on the bestseller's lists for many years, turning out countless collected short and novel-length stories. Russell is a fresh new voice in fiction, revered on the short story circuit and now for her first full-length novel.
You probably know Chuck Palahniuk as the author of Fight Club, but the subversive novelist never intended to be the king of frat boys everywhere. (Hell, he got 'em reading though, didn't he?) Almost like a big middle finger to the pop culture world that embraced him so easily, his new book Damned follows a spoiled dilettante to Hell after she dies from a marijuana overdose. Palahniuk's version of the afterlife is, of course, hysterical and terrifying at the same time.
Another notable Chuck, Chuck Klosterman is best known for his essays and criticism, having made a significant name for himself in magazine writing and essay collections during the 90s. Recently, he took the leap into fiction with Downtown Owl, and he will be at the Festival discussing his newest novel The Visible Man, which focuses on an invisible man's observation of other people's everyday lives.
Local authors make up a significant portion of the Book Festival as well, capturing the spirit and creativity of Texas as well. Fiction favorites Amanda Eyre Ward and Sarah Bird both released novels this year, full of their fictionalized but very personalized experiences as Austin-based writers. Ward's novel, Close Your Eyes, follows the tale of a young woman dealing with the loss of her mother and the secrets about who was responsible. Bird's The Gap Year is a humorous, bittersweet account of a mother and daughter's slow separation during the latter's senior year of high school.
These just a handful of the over 250 authors that will be flooding into Texas to quench Austin's literary thirst. The full schedule of events, including the first annual TBF Lit Crawl, will be released in the coming weeks. Until then, you'll have to dream big and pray you can fit all your favorites into your two day schedule.
Also, if you sign up to become a member of the Texas Book Festival by Sep 15, you'll be entered into the TBF/CultureMap drawing for two tickets to the exclusive author party and a "fast-pass" for the Festival! Your $50.00 donation will help keep the Book Festival free for everyone and help connect students and Texans of all ages to literature throughout the year.