BY SOPHIE BIRD
Local bibliophiles will have the opportunity to meet and converse with nearly two dozen regional authors at the second Quarry Festival of Books, co-sponsored by IU Press and Bloom Magazine.
The festival will be held in Dunn Meadow on the Indiana University campus on Saturday, September 2, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., once again coinciding with the Fourth Street Festival of the Arts & Crafts. John Decker, IU Press advertising and events manager, says sharing the date encourages Bloomington families who are already downtown to take advantage of both festivals.
Dave Hulsey, associate director of IU Press, thinks having the book festival at that time is apt. “Books are art,” he says. “A different form of art, but still art. We think it kind of fits in.”
Among the authors expected to attend are journalist Douglas Wissing, whose book Hopeless But Optimistic details his journey across warzones in Afghanistan; James Alexander Thom, author of more than a dozen historical novels; Scott Russell Sanders, author of 20 fiction and nonfiction books; and environmental journalist Steven Higgs, author of A Guide to Natural Areas of Southern Indiana.
There will dozens of new publications available for purchase, including Earth Eats, a cookbook based on the WFIU radio show, as well as hits from last year like Melissa Mueller’s Color Your Campus: Indiana University.
Former IU basketball player Kirk Haston’s attendance was a highlight of the 2016 festival, says Decker. While Haston won’t be in attendance this year, signed copies of his book, Days of Knight, which chronicles his experiences with former IU men’s basketball head coach Bob Knight, will be available
Hulsey says children’s activities will be provided so parents can browse more easily, and notes there will be contests to win free books. Autographs with authors will be available.
Decker says the festival is an opportunity that doesn’t come around every day. “This is the only book festival in Bloomington,” he explains. “If Bloomingtonians are looking for something else like this, they’d have to go out of the community. We’re providing something new and different.”
A full list of attending authors is available at iupress.indiana.edu.