Tuesday, June 12, 2018

ATLANTA ENTERTAINMENT ICON ANNOUNCED AS KEYNOTE FOR 2018 AJC DECATUR BOOK FESTIVAL LABOR DAY WEEKEND

ATLANTA ENTERTAINMENT ICON ANNOUNCED AS KEYNOTE 
FOR 2018 AJC DECATUR BOOK FESTIVAL LABOR DAY WEEKEND

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ATLANTA, Ga. — Internationally acclaimed director and actor of stage, film and television, Kenny Leon is the 2018 Atlanta Journal-Constitution Decatur Book Festival (DBF) keynote speaker on Friday, August 31. This marks the 13thyear for the festival.

The conversation kicks off the festival at 8 p.m. at Emory University’s Schwartz Center for Performing Arts. Distribution of free tickets will be announced at a later date. 

“We are truly thrilled and honored to have Kenny Leon,” said DBF executive director Julie Wilson. “His creativity and vision bring to life what we hope inspires our festival attendees. His work is true magic.

“Every year we have subtle themes, and this year we’re focused on unique creativity and storytelling. Everyone has a story to tell, and this year we’ll have new and old voices that will move us, challenge, inspire and make us laugh and cry.”

This year, Leon is releasing his first memoir Take You Wherever You Go - “he learned every step of the way from the most important people in his life-from his grandmother's sagacious and encouraging motivations to the steady hand of his mother to the deep artistic and social influence of iconic American playwright August Wilson."

Leon is a Tony Award winning Broadway director as well as a film and television director/producer. His Broadway credits include the 2014 revival of A Raisin in the Sun starring Denzel Washington - Tony Award Winner for Best Direction of a Play and Best Revival, The Mountaintop starring Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, Stick Fly produced by Alicia Keys, August Wilson's Fences (which won three of the 10 Tony’s for which it was nominated which garnered ten Tony nominations and won three Tony Awards including Best Revival), the 2004 revival of A Raisin in the Sun with Sean P. Diddy Combs, Gem of the Ocean, Radio Golf and the 2014 premiere of Holler if You Hear Me, a new musical created using the music of Tupac Shakur. 

Leon is a graduate of Clark Atlanta and is an honorary Ph.D. recipient of Clark Atlanta and Roosevelt Universities.  He is currently serving as the Denzel Washington Chair at Fordham University. Leon is the Artistic Director of Kenny Leon's True Colors Theatre in Atlanta.

On Saturday and Sunday of the festival, stages throughout downtown Decatur will be filled with some of the biggest names in literature and arts. A sampling of highlights of the adult programming stages are attached.

Launched in 2006, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Decatur Book Festival (DBF) brings more than 300 nationally and internationally known authors, children’s and young adult writers and illustrators, and tens of thousands of readers together for a weekend of fun and discovery. Held every Labor Day weekend in Downtown Decatur, the DBF is the largest independent book festival in the country. The DBF hosts author events throughout the year and sponsors The Decatur Writers Studio. For more information, visit www.decaturbookfestival.com, “like” Decatur Book Festival on Facebook or follow @DBookFestival on Twitter.

2018 AJC Decatur Book Festival Programming Highlights from the Adult Stages!!!!


 

2018 AJC Decatur Book Festival
Programming Highlights from the Adult Stages


Fiction 

Fan favorite Karin Slaughter returns to the AJC Decatur Book Festival with Pieces of Her, considered one of the most electrifying, provocative, and suspenseful novels she’s ever written. 

In An American Marriage, Tayari Jones provides an intimate look deep into the souls of people who must reckon with the past while moving forward.
David Joy’s The Line That Held Us brings the story about the cover-up of an accidental death, and the dark consequences that reverberate through the lives of four people who will never be the same again.
V.E. Schwab returns to celebrate the update of Vicious, a masterful tale of ambition, jealousy, and superpowers.
Kent Wascom provides a dramatic portrait of young love and a family driven apart by greed, anger, and matters of the heart in The New Inheritors.
In Praise Song for the Butterflies, Bernice McFadden tells the story of how a young woman must learn to love and trust again after experiencing the brutality of servitude in West Africa.
Rebecca Makkai brings The Great Believers, a dazzling new novel of friendship and redemption in the face of tragedy and loss set in 1980s Chicago and contemporary Paris.
In Visible Empire, Hannah Pittard uses the Orly Air Crash of 1962 as the starting point of this story about a single sweltering summer, and the promise and hope that remains in the wake of crisis.
International bestselling author Karma Brown brings The Life Lucy Knew, an emotionally charged story of a woman who’s about to find out that everything she believes—knows—to be true about her life…isn’t.
The Moscow Deception is the second book in bestselling author Karen Robards’ all-new big thriller series about a master manipulator known as the Guardian. But there's only one Bianca St. Ives and don't you dare forget it.

Science

Paige Embry (Our Native Bees: North America’s Endangered Pollinators and the Fight to Save Them) and Lynn Brunelle (Turn This Book into a Beehive!) explore the importance of native bees, focusing on why they play a key role in gardening and agriculture, and provide tangible ways to positively impact your local bee population.
Randi Hutter Epstein provides a guided tour through the strange science of hormones and the age-old quest to control them in Aroused: The History of Hormones and How They Control Just About Everything.
In Ticker: The Quest to Create an Artificial Heart, Texas Monthly executive editor and two-time National Magazine Award winner Mimi Swartz takes readers behind the scenes of perhaps the greatest medical and technological quest of our time, as she follows pioneering heart surgeon O. H. “Bud” Frazier and his partner, Dr. Billy Cohn, in Frazier’s lifelong effort to develop, perfect, and successfully implant an artificial heart in patients whose hearts are failing.

Non-Fiction

DBF favorite Rick Bragg returns with The Best Cook in the World: Tales from My Momma’s Table, a delectable, loving tribute to a region, a vanishing history, a family, and, especially, to his mother.
In The Electric Woman, Tessa Fontaine chronicles her time on the road with the last traveling American sideshow and her relationship with an adventurous, spirited mother.
Journalist Beth Macy brings Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America, which charts the devastating opioid crisis in America.
DBF favorite Beth Ann Fennelly returns with Heating and Cooling, 52 micro-memoirs that provide a glimpse into a richly lived life.
Based on literary and historical detective work, the renowned Bible scholar and bestselling author Richard Elliott Freidman discovers the historical roots of the Bible’s Exodus story in The Exodus, which, he argues, became the foundation for the rise of monotheism and a new ethic of caring for strangers.
The Military Science of Star Wars is the first military and historical analysis of the Star Wars universe. Former army artillery officer George Beahm provides an in-depth analysis of the tactics and equipment used by the heroes and villains of the Star Wars universe.
Film expert Eddy von Mueller discusses Frankenstein: How a Monster Became an Icon: The Science and Enduring Allure of Mary Shelley’s Creation. Mueller and co-writer Sydney Perkowitz have brought together scholars and scientists, artists and directions—including Mel Brooks—to celebrate and examine Mary Shelley’s marvelous creation and its legacy as the monster moves into his next century.

Poetry

In Oceanic, her fourth collection of poetry, Aimee Nezhukumatathil creates a thorough registry of the earth’s wonderful and terrible magic, and studies forms of love as diverse and abundant as the ocean itself.
Tom Sleigh’s House of Fact, House of Ruin provides a collection set very much of our present moment, ranging across the landscapes of contemporary experience.
Still Life with Two Dead Peacocks and a Girl takes its title from Rembrandt’s painting, a dark emblem of femininity, violence, and the viewer’s own troubled gaze. In Diane Seuss’s new collection, the notion of the still life is shattered and Rembrandt’s painting is presented across the book in pieces—details that hide more than they reveal until they’re assembled into a whole.
In Otherworld, Underworld, Prayer Porch, former Poet Laureate of Georgia David Bottoms explores otherness, the death of parents, and private spirituality.

Cooking

Champion pitmaster Tuffy Stone brings his complete guide to barbecue, from smoke to sauce in Cool Smoke, The Art of Great Barbecue.
A modern approach to grilling from Steven Raichlen, America’s “master griller,” Project Fire shows how to put the latest grilling methods to work using favorite ingredients and adding a dash of daring in flavors, technique, and presentation.
In Secrets of the Southern Table: A Food Lover’s Tour of the Global South, award-winning chef and cookbook author Virginia Willis takes you on a tour of a region rich in history and cultural diversity. 
James Beard Award-nominated Chef Todd Richards shares his personal culinary exploration of soul food in SOUL: A Chef’s Culinary Evolution in 150 Recipes, which shares the message that cooks can honor tradition yet be liberated to explore.
A chance encounter with an obscure vintage made near Jerusalem leads journalist Kevin Begos to seek the origins of wine. In Tasting the Past: The Science of Flavor and the Search for the Origins of Wine, Begos details his discovery of a whole world of forgotten grapes, each with distinctive tastes and aromas, as well as the archaeologists, chemists, and botanists who are deciphering wine down to molecules of flavor. 
In Basque Country: A Culinary Journey Through a Food Lover’s Paradise, Marti Buckley offers a brilliant collection of recipes for Basque food and a definitive work highlighting the customs, ingredients, people, and culture that make this ancient region such a fertile place for excellent cuisine. 

History

Acclaimed historian John Ferling brings Apostles of Revolution: Jefferson, Paine, Monroe, and the Struggle Against the Old Order of America and Europe. This sweeping narrative captures the turbulent spirit of the times and the personal dangers experienced by Jefferson, Paine, and Monroe.
In Empress: The Astonishing Reign of Nur Jahan, acclaimed historian Ruby Lal uncovers the rich life and world of Nur Jahan, rescuing this dazzling figure from patriarchal and Orientalist clich├ęs of romance and intrigue, and giving new insight into the lives of women and girls in the Mughal Empire, even where scholars claim there are no sources.
Lydia Kang offers a smart, morbidly humorous look at medicine's greatest misfires through history, with vintage images and advertisements for cures and other quackery in Quackery: A Brief History of the Worst Ways to Cure Everything.
With The Secret Token: Myth, Obsession, and the Search for the Lost Colony of Roanoke, Andrew Lawler provides a sweeping account of America’s oldest unsolved mystery, the people racing to unearth its answer, and the sobering truths—about race, gender, and immigration—exposed by the Lost Colony of Roanoke.
In hundreds of iconic, smart, angry, clever, unforgettable images, Bonnie Siegler’s Signs of Resistance: A Visual History of Protest in America chronicles what truly makes America great: citizens unafraid of speaking truth to power.

Civil and Human Rights

In her book In a Day’s Work: The Fight to End Sexual Violence Against America’s Most Vulnerable Workers, acclaimed journalist Bernice Yeung investigates sexual assault against the invisible workers who are an essential part of the #metoo and #timesup movements.
Janet Dewart Bell offers Lighting the Fires of Freedom: African American Women in the Civil Rights Movement, a groundbreaking collection of narratives based on oral histories that brilliantly plumb the leadership of African American women in the twentieth-century fight for civil rights.
CNN law enforcement contributor Matthew Horace offers an unforgettable account of the racism, crimes, and color lines that permeate America’s law enforcement, and lays out a means for change in The Black and the Blue: A Cop Reveals the Crimes, Racism, and Injustice in America’s Law Enforcement.

Shea Serrano Selects Track (sponsored by MailChimp)

Since 2014, the AJC Decatur Book Festival has offered a unique author-curated track, working with a notable author to personally curate a group of authors to present at the festival. This year, Shea Serrano, journalist, former teacher, and writer has gathered a diverse group of young voices for this year’s DBF. Serrano’s most recent title, Basketball (and Other Things) was a New York Times bestseller and was listed as one of former president Barak Obama’s favorite books of 2017.
In So You Want to Talk About Race, Ijeoma Oluo explores the complex reality of today's racial landscape, offering straightforward clarity that readers need in order to contribute to the dismantling of the racial divide.
Jonathan Abrams provides the definitive oral history of the iconic TV show The Wire®, in All the Pieces Matter: The Inside Story of The Wire®.
In The Poet X, slam poet Elizabeth Acevedo offers a novel-in-verse about an Anfro-Latina heroine who tells her story with blazing words and powerful truth.
Based on his enormously popular Twitter account, Jomny Sun brings everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too, the illustrated story of a lonely alien sent to observe Earth, only to meet all sorts of creatures with all sorts of perspectives on life, love, and happiness, all while learning to feel a little better about being an alien.
In Electric Arches, Eve Ewing provides an imaginative exploration of black girlhood and womanhood through poetry, visual art, and narrative prose.
Tochi Onyebuchi brings Beasts Made of Night, delivering a haunting and powerful story of loyalty, survival, and heart-pounding adventure … think Black Panther meets Nnedi Okorafor’s Akata Witch.