Brooklyn Book Festival

Sun Sep 25, 2022
Various times
Free - Books available for purchase

Sunday update: Nature intervened and due to high wind conditions, all author events have been moved to indoor venues. The outdoor Literary Marketplace has sadly been canceled. Indoor events require Proof of Covid-19 VAX to attend. Masks may be required.

The 2022 Brooklyn Book Festival celebrates its 17th anniversary of presenting free literary programming. This year's fest includes events both in-person and virtual. Kid-friendly programming abounds during Children's Day on Saturday, October 1.

Opening day events include a family-friendly matinee at the Jalopy Theatre (315 Columbia St, 2pm) with slide-show readings, live music, and interactive stories. Plus: prizes from local Brooklyn businesses and a special appearance by Santa Claus, reading the upcoming book Santa Doesn’t Need Your Help.

The Children’s Day (October 1) lineup in Brooklyn Commons in Metro Tech features talented children’s authors, including: Vera Ahiyya, Dhonielle Clayton, Johnnie Christmas, C.G. Esperanza, Kyle Lukoff, Kayla Miller, Claribel Ortega, Dan Santat and many more. Families can participate in readings and join workshops, book signings, art projects, and more with their favorite authors and illustrators.

Picture Books Stage
Award-winning and beloved children’s book authors read, perform, draw and bring their books to life.

10am Singing the Books
Flor Bromley
, a bilingual actress/singer/songwriter, storyteller and puppeteer, opens Children's Day with her sing along fun, bringing books to life as songs - in Spanish and English!

 11am KINDergarten by Vera Ahiyya
In the heartwarming KINDergarten, quiet and shy Leo is nervous for his first day of school. But when his class takes a kindness pledge and Leo’s caring actions are thoughtfully noticed by his peers, he realizes that kindergarten might not be so scary after all.

11:30am The Coquíes Still Sing by Karina Nicole González
Elena loves to listen to the coquí frogs sing to her from her family’s beloved mango tree. But when a hurricane comes, the safe, familiar home Elena knew suddenly isn’t so safe and familiar anymore. The Coquíes Still Sing follows Elena and her family as they find the hope and resilience they need to rebuild after Hurricane Maria. 

12pm The Blur by Dan Santat
Meet a special child with amazing abilities: elastic limbs, an ultrasonic voice, and super speed! Meet THE BLUR! But as she zooms through life, can her parents ever manage to keep up? Written by Minh Lê and illustrated by Caldecott-winner Dan SantatThe Blur is a heartwarming ode to childhood, and the way it all seems to go by so fast.

12:30pm El Toro & Friends: Team Up by Raúl The Third
El Toro and his fellow wrestler friends are back! In the latest children’s book from Raúl The Third, the friend group learns the value of teamwork and sticking together. Written bilingually in Spanish and English, children are sure to delight in this action-packed adventure that’s full of laughs and positive lessons.

1pm Anzu the Great Kaiju by Benson Shum
Anzu is different from the rest of his family. Instead of scaring people with his monstrous powers like the other great Kaiju, Anzu prefers to be kind and gentle. How can he make his parents proud while still staying true to himself?

1:30pm I Cannot Draw a Horse by Charise Mericle Harper
Who ever heard of a book that offers drawings as presents?! In the humorous I Cannot Draw a Horse, a generous-spirited book gives a cat drawings—a squirrel, beaver, and a bunny—but never the drawing she really wants. Will the cat ever receive a picture of a horse?

2pm Boogie Boogie, Y’all by C.G. Esperanza
The city is full of incredible art, so why does no one ever stop to look? Join C.G. Esperanza for a fun and lyrical tale of three children who take it upon themselves to make a busy city stop and appreciate the everyday beauty of urban graffiti.

2:30pm My Diwali Light by Raakhee Mirchandani
Follow along with Devi in My Diwali Light, as she celebrates Diwali traditions like designing rangoli, wearing a beautiful red bindi, and painting diyas with her family. Written by Raakhee Mirchandani and illustrated by Supriya Kelkar, this joyful tale about the holiday season is sure to enchant young hearts.

3pm Carrimebec, The Town That Walked by David Barclay Moore
Carrimebec, The Town That Walked is a stunning tale of magical realism that is truly the perfect merge between history, African American folk wisdom, and mystical elements. David Barclay Moore creates a captivating tale for children as a way to educate on the Reconstruction era in this modern classic illustrated by John Holyfield.

3:30pm Moonlight by Stephen Savage
In the latest bedtime story by author and illustrator Stephen Savage, children are calmly and peacefully lulled to sleep by this whimsical journey. Readers follow along with the moon’s bright and constant light, as it touches every corner of the world.

Young Readers Stage
For kids ages 6 to 11—favorite authors talk about books and about being an author, watch illustrators in action and everything in between. All authors sign their books near the PowerHouse Booth on the plaza.

11am New York City Children’s Theater presents The Adventure of Honey & Leon Creative Clubhouse Stories Class
Join the NYCCT team for a unique read aloud experience with kids, combining physical and vocal warm-ups with an interactive read aloud of Honey & Leon, and connecting theater activities and recorded music from the show!

12pm Epic Character Face-Offs!
In this interactive program, kids get to build the wildest, weirdest characters theycan think of and decide who wins when they face off in some seriously epic battles! Can a wizard with laser eyes beat a time-traveler who toots poisonous gas? Will a three-headed kitten out-cute a pygmy unicorn? Master storyteller Ibi Zoboi (Star Child) helps kids create characters as amazing illustrators Kayla Miller (Crunch) and Johnnie Christmas (Swim Team) draw the ultimate face-offs.

1pm Draw Me a Story
Help acclaimed author Emma Otheguy (Sofia Acosta Makes a Scene) dream up a story and watch Caldecott-winning illustrator Dan Santat (The Blur) and rising star cartoonist Shauna J. Grant (Mimi: Cutie Catastrophe) draw it on the spot! You decide what fates these characters will meet!

2pm A Whole New World
New York Times bestselling authors Dhonielle Clayton (The Marvellers) and Claribel Ortega (Witchlings), New York Times bestselling author and illustrator Ethan M. Aldridge (The Legend of Bright Blade) and critically acclaimed author Julie C. Dao (Team Chu and the Battle of Blackwood Arena) chat about all things high-stakes adventure, multicultural magic and the joys and challenges of building new worlds for middle-grade readers in this epic panel.

3pm The Truth About Banned Books
Newbery Honor and National Book Award finalist Kyle Lukoff (Different Kinds of Fruit), Stonewall Award winner Brandy Colbert (The Only Black Girls in Town), and Maulik Pancholy (The Best at It) lead a panel about banned and challenged middle grade books, moderated by Brooklyn Public Library Coordinator Karen Keys and Alyeah McAllister from the Intellectual Freedom Teen Council, who recently led BPL's effort to provide library cards to teens across the country experiencing book bans in their area. They'll discuss writing children's books at a time when book bans targeting race, gender, and sexuality are at an unprecedented high, why kids should be able to read freely, and their own favorite middle grade titles that frequent banned book lists.

Center Stage

12pm Scenes from Pinkalicious the Musical
The Vital Theatre Company, which is dedicated to producing entertaining and educational theater for young audiences, entertains at Brooklyn Book Festival Children's Day on the Main Stage!

1pm Mac Barnett & Shawn Harris
Based on their YouTube live cartoon series, Mac and Shawn created The First Cat in Space Ate Pizza, an epic graphic novel about the first cat in space, a battle against moon-eating rats, and a harrowing journey to eating some pizza. Join them for a dramatic reading, Q&A, and more!

3pm Illustrator Draw-Off
Watch, laugh, and cheer as artist Raúl The Third presides over the year’s most dynamic live action drawing competition featuring George O’Connor (Olympians series), Benson Shum (Anzu the Great Kaiju)Charise Mericle Harper (I Cannot Draw A Horse), Jay Davis (Girl Dadand more.

Makers and Creators Area

11am - 2pm Print with Wood Type
Print real antique wood type on a vintage Kelsey letterpress with Dikko Faust of Purgatory Pie Press. Travel back in time to make your own BKBF Children’s Day souvenir keepsake.

12pm Fold, Cut & Pop! Make a Book!
How to Make Books and Making Books with Kids author Esther K. Smith and Jane Sanders who illustrated Making Books with Kids show kids how to fold, cut and pop their own books. Then kids can draw + write a story!

12pm - 3pm Lego Block Building
Join Brooklyn Bridge Parents for Lego and block building for children of all ages. Whether it is a bridge, skyscraper, ball track or school - come build, play and laugh with us! Peruse Lego books for inspiration or make your own.

1pm Costuming with George O'Connor
Create your own costume and join the pantheon of Gods. Illustrator and writer George O’Connor, creator of the Olympians series, leads kids in making masks and transforming themselves into gods and goddesses.

2pm Celebrate Yourself with Infographics!
Reflect on info patterns in our everyday lives by making Personal Pie Panoramas, or a paper accordion of pie charts measuring our favorite things. Are you 10% pizza, 15% kittens, and 20% soccer? Find out your personal make up, or make one with a friend. Guided by Andrea Tsurumi, illustrator of Life Log, a hands-on tutorial about making personal infographics.

3pm Discover the World of Fungi
Join Mason Goes Mushrooming author Melany Kahn and illustrator Ellen Korbonski for interactive kid -friendly activities about mushrooms. Identify real mushrooms, grab provided paints and materials to make your own wooden, paper or model fungi to take home, or watch an illustrator at work making mushrooms appear from the tip of her watercolor brush.

In addition to Children’s Day events, Brooklyn Book Festival features other events for parents, caregivers, and children, including:

PICTURE THIS! A Celebration of Picture Books (In-Person)
Sunday, September 25 | 2pm
Jalopy Theatre and School of Music, 315 Columbia Street, Brooklyn NY 11231

An all-ages multi-media show with authors and illustrators who make picture books. This family-friendly matinee includes slide-show readings, live music, and interactive stories. Plus: prizes from local Brooklyn businesses. Emceed by Camila Jones, featuring Phaea CredeJoe DatorKevin MaherJulia Sarcone-Roach, and R. Sikoryak. With a special appearance by Santa Claus, reading the upcoming book Santa Doesn’t Need Your Help.

 Antiracist Family Day
Thursday, September 29 | 2pm
Brooklyn Children’s Museum, 145 Brooklyn Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11213

Join Brooklyn Public Library for a special program to promote and model antiracist practices for families and children at the Brooklyn Children’s Museum:

Antiracist Storytimes: Highlighting BIPOC authors, these stories represent diverse identities and perspectives, and will feature songs, rhymes, and opportunities for audience engagement.

Diverse Books Browsing Cart: Picture books related to the themes of the day: Identity, Diversity, Justice, and Activism. Enjoy in the reading garden or check them out with your BPL Library Card.

Diverse Books Giveaways: BPL is giving away 100 new books (1 per child/family) related to the themes of the day!

We’ll Cry if We Want To: A Lit Party for Muthas and Others
Thursday, September 29 | 5pm
Barbès, 376 9th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Readings, theater, comedy, and comics (read live on projector screen!) from writers and artists of MUTHA Magazine, co-sponsored by Pen Parentis, featuring the awesome line-up of Emily Flake (The New Yorker and author of Mama Tried), Ariel Gore (Hip Mama and author of The Wayward Writer), Cheryl E. Klein (celebrating her debut memoir Crybaby), Lisa Lim (MUTHA comics regular), Jessica Phillips Lorenz (previewing the play Best Party Ever), Jade Sanchez-Ventura (Home is Where We… series), and Lauren R. Weinstein (Normel Person and Mother’s Walk) – with MUTHA Editor-in-Chief Meg Lemke and Pen Parentis founder and executive director M. M. De Voe emceeing.

Citywide Bookend Events are planned in venues across all 5 boroughs and virtually as well, featuring hundreds more authors who read and perform together. Announced authors include: Kate Beaton, Jamel Brinkley, Angie Cruz, Rivka Galchen, Ross Gay, Annabelle Gurwitch, Naomi Jackson, Michael Pedersen, Jive Poetic, and Sarah Ruhl.

** Activity dates/times are subject to change. Please click through to the activity website to verify.
** Please keep your family and others safe by wearing masks and social distancing. If an activity appears too crowded, try using the "nearby" search feature on our activity calendar to find something else to do.
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