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The Wisconsin Book Festival is preparing for the fall kickoff to its 2021–22 programming season, with a hybrid approach for author events — some virtual and others in person. In-person events will mostly take place on
Saturday, October 23, during the annual fall celebration weekend at Central Library, with select in-person events in partnership with the Wisconsin Science Festival at the Discovery Building on the UW-Madison campus.

This year’s event highlights include:

  • Award-winning educator and historian Carol Anderson for The Second, 7:00 pm Thursday, October 21 (virtual)
  • Literary fiction icon Miriam Toews for Fight Night, 8:30 pm Thursday, October 21 (virtual)
  • Radio host, journalist and public speaker Celeste Headlee for Speaking of Race, 7:00 pm Friday, October 22 (virtual)
  • Wisconsin’s own Nickolas Butler for Godspeed, 6:00 pm Saturday, October 23 (in person)
  • Whiting Award recipient Jaquira Diaz for Ordinary Girls, 3:00 pm Saturday, October 23 (in person)
  • Best-selling thriller writer Nick Petrie for The Breaker, 4:30 pm Saturday, October 23 (in person)
  • Defense attorney, motivational speaker and nonprofit leader Jarrett Adams for Redeeming Justice, 7:30 pm Saturday, October 23 (in person)
  • Intrepid journalist and science writer Mary Roach for Fuzz, presented in partnership with the Wisconsin Science Festival, 11:00 am Sunday, October 24 (in person)

Programs scheduled in the weeks leading up to the fall celebration include:

  • #metoo movement founder and activist Tarana Burke for Unbound, 6:00 pm Thursday, September 23 (virtual)
  • Internationally renowned multi-genre writer Sandra Cisneros for Martita, I Remember You, 7:00 pm Tuesday, September 28 (virtual)
  • Memoirist Bobby Love and wife Cheryl Love for The Redemption of Bobby Love, 7:00 pm Thursday, October 7 (virtual)
  • Feminist essayist and memoirist Melissa Febos for Girlhood, 7:00 pm Tuesday, October 12 (in person)

"We’re looking forward to the upcoming festival season in its continually evolving form,” said festival Director Conor Moran. “Our virtual events proved very popular over the last year and a half, so we’re planning to continue those but balance them out with select in-person events for those who prefer and miss that format. We want to do whatever we can to celebrate books and reading, to support authors, and to make author talks accessible to our community.” Festival program attendees and authors will be required to adhere to any public health orders in place at their scheduled time. Visit the festival website for a complete list of events, which is
subject to change.

Media interested in scheduling advance interviews with authors or in speaking with Moran about the event lineup should email

The Wisconsin Book Festival is presented by Madison Public Library in partnership with Madison Public Library Foundation. For program details and the full schedule, go to

The festival is funded with generous support from Signature Sponsor Marvin J. Levy; Presenting Sponsor Pleasant T. Rowland Foundation; Festival Patron Cheryl Rosen Weston Estate; Festival Sponsors National Endowment forthe Arts and American Girl’s Fund for Children; Contributing Sponsors The Bass Family, Friends of the University of Wisconsin Madison Libraries, Great Dane Pub & Brewing Co., MG&E Foundation and University Research Park; Media Sponsors The Capital Times & Wisconsin State Journal, Isthmus, Madison365 and Wisconsin Public Radio; In-Kind Sponsors KennedyC and the Park Hotel; and Event Supporter
A Room of One’s Own. Learn more about funding and support for the festival at

About the Wisconsin Book Festival
The Wisconsin Book Festival presents local, national and international author events throughout the year. Founded by the Wisconsin Humanities Council in 2002, the festival moved under Madison Public Library in partnership with Madison Public Library Foundation in 2013. Follow the festival on its website, on its Crowdcast page, on its Facebook page, @wibookfestival on Twitter, or @wibookfest on Instagram.

About Madison Public Library
Madison Public Library’s tradition of promoting education, literacy and community involvement has enriched the City of Madison for more than 140 years. Its nine locations are open six days a week (with some limited Sunday hours) and welcome nearly 2 million visitors each year. For more information, visit, the library’s Facebook page, @madisonlibrary on Twitter and @madisonpubliclibrary on Instagram.

About Madison Public Library Foundation
Madison Public Library Foundation mobilizes the Madison community to continuously improve, promote and support Madison Public Library. Learn how the foundation provides funding for Madison’s libraries and efforts like the Wisconsin Book Festival at, on the foundation’s Facebook page, and @mplfoundation on Twitter and Instagram.