Brooklyn Book Festival 2011 Features Hudson Valley and Westchester County, NY, Authors

Brooklyn’s book festival features several Hudson Valley and Westchester County authors, writers, and filmmakers



I know, I know. I’m supposed to be a champion of all the arts and culture that goes on outside the purview of New York City’s five boroughs. But this upcoming weekend, everyone — including tons of our neighbors — are heading to Brooklyn for the Brooklyn Book Festival.

The event, which takes place downtown (right outside the courthouse) next Sunday, September 18, gathers writers who’ll read from their most recent works and host panel discussions with fellow wordsmiths. Publishers, journalists, and illustrators also man booths where you can browse and buy their wares. It is a bookworm’s dream.

This year, Jhumpa Lahiri, Jonathan Safran Foer, Colson Whitehead, Tom Perrotta, and Joyce Carol Oates will be in attendance. But what local names can we find among the program list? Here are a few:

John Sayles
Sayles — who we profiled alongside partner and producer Maggie Renzi during our coverage of the 2008 Woodstock Film Festival — makes the trip down from Clinton Corners to participate in a discussion about creating characters and stories out of historical events. The A Moment in the Sun author joins novelists Terese Svoboda (Bohemian Girl) and Esmeralda Santiago (Conquistadora), a Katonah resident.

Roxana Robinson
The onetime/part-time Westchester resident reads from her book Cost as part of a panel on “family life gone awry in their fiction.”

Russell Banks
The writer lives in upstate New York, where his books often take place. (Case in point: The Reserve, which depicts a high-society sanctuary in the Adirondacks). He’ll be reading from his newest tome, The Lost Memory of Skin, which arrives in October.

Jennifer Egan
I’ve written about how much I enjoyed the Pulitzer Prize-winning A Visit from the Goon Squad before — and even moreso because part of it takes place in Crandale, a fictional town in Westchester.

Judy Blundell
Another Katonah resident, Blundell wrote What I Saw and How I Lied, a young-adult novel that garnered the National Book Award. Blundell is part of a YA panel titled “Reimagining History,” during which authors talk about “what it takes to tap into and re-imagine unforgettable characters that bring us mystery and adventure wrapped in emotional and timeless settings.”

Ed Young
The award-winning author/illustrator, who lives in Westchester’s Rivertowns, heads to the Target Children’s Area to read from The House Baba Built: An Artist’s Childhood in China.

To get there: Take Metro-North to Grand Central Terminal, then hop on the 4 or 5 train downtown to Borough Hall.

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Marisa LaScala

Marisa LaScala
Elmsford, NY


Associate Editor Marisa LaScala joined Westchester magazine in 2003, and ever since she's blown every paycheck at the Greenburgh Multiplex. She also staunchly defends Richard Kelly, doesn't mind spoiling the endings of trashy movies you're curious about but don't want to pay to see, wishes the Hold Steady would come back and rock out Westchester, misses Arrested Development more than anyone can imagine, and still watches cartoons and Saturday Night Live. You can find more of her cultural criticism at www.popmatters.com, where she is a staff writer.

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