Philadelphia Book Festival Schedule: Barbara Ehrenreich, Food Network’s the Neelys and More


The eighth annual Philadelphia Book Festival returns April 13th for a week of page-turning, citywide fun. Free Library will host guest speakers at events at the Central Branch, and some of its 54 other locations, drawing book-worms from across the community. All events are free and open to the public. Here are some of our top picks from the itinerary:

Monday 4/14

Poetry with Dan and Dave Simpson: Come here twin brothers share their story of disability and art, via their acclaimed poetry dealing with themes of blindness and beauty. 3 p.m., Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, 919 Walnut Street

Meet the Author: Lori Tharps: Come meet the Temple teacher and writer behind critically acclaimed non-fiction works, Hair Story: Untangling the Roots of Black Hair in America and Kinky Gazpacho: Life, Love and Spain, and  novel Substitute Me. 7 p.m., The Wadsworth Branch, 1500 Wadsworth Avenue

Back Home with the Neelys: Comfort Food from Our Southern Kitchen to Yours: Food Network stars Pat and Gina Neely dish on their latest cookbook, with the charm and southern comfort that consistently makes their show and recipes drool-worthy. 7:30 p.m., Central Library, 1901 Vine Street

Tuesday 4/15

The Spaces Between Your Fingers Project: This nonprofit provides free biographers for people with Alzheimer’s, keeping history intact via archiving and a picture post-card for friends or family. 5 p.m., Central Library, 1901 Vine Street

Frank Sherlock, Poet Laureate of Philadelphia: Inaugural Reading: Recently titled Poet Laureate of Philadelphia, Frank Sherlock, reads from his newest collection of poetry, Space Between These Lines Not Dedicated. 7 p.m., Central Library 1901 Vine Street

Debbie Macomber, Blossom Street Brides: A Blossom Street Novel: New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber speaks on her latest installment in the Blossom Street series. 7:30 p.m., Central Library, 1901 Vine Street

 Wednesday 4/16 

Barbara Ehrenreich: Living with a Wild God: A Memoir Speaking about her new memoir, veteran muckraker and New York Times  bestselling author of fourteen books tackles one of the few American subjects she has yet to take on: herself. 7:30 p.m., Central Library, 1901 Vine Street

Meet the Author: Warren Hoffman: Associate Director of Community Programs for the Center of Jewish Life and Learning at Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia and Core Writer with InterAct Theatre Company Warren Hoffman talks his latest book, The Great White Way: Race and the Broadway Musical. 6 p.m., Independence Branch, 18 South 7th Street

 Thursday 4/17

Dismantle: The VONA Anthology, featuring Mitchell S. Jackson, Cynthia Dewl Oka and Marissa Johnson-Valenzuela: Authors read from Dismantle, the first-ever anthology from VONA, Voices Writing Workshop for writers of color. 5 p.m., Paschalville Branch, 6942 Woodland Avenue

Anne Perry: Death on Blackheath: Named one of the 20th century’s top 100 mystery writers by The Times of London, Anne Perry returns with new dark and lusty fiction set in Victorian England. 7:30 p.m., Central Libary 1901 Vine Street

Friday 4/18

Lydia Davis: Can’t and Won’t: Stories: “One of the quiet giants of American fiction” (Los Angeles Times Book Review), Lydia Davis speaks on her fifth collection of minimalist stories.  7:30 p.m, Central Library, 1901 Vine Street

 Saturday 4/19

Meet the Author: Justin Kramon: Come to the Chestnut Hill Branch to meet award-winning Philly-based author of Finny and The Preservationist. 1:30 p.m., Chestnut Hill Branch, 8711 Germantown Avenue

Doug Fine: Hemp Bound: Dispatches from the Front Line of the New Cannabis Economy:  Hard-hitting investigative journalist and author of Too High to Fail: Cannabis and the New Green Economic Revolution, Doug Fine, speaks on his latest book and America’s most misunderstood plant 7:30 p.m., Central Library, 1901 Vine Street

Full event listings can be found here.  All events are free and open to the public.

Looking for something else? Check out our Philadelphia Event Listings page for a list of local goings-on through May.