105 Ways to Give a Book

The National Book Festival: The Dénouement

Now, it may surprise some of you — the some of you who haven’t been paying attention along the course of my saga — that I didn’t see Mo Willems’ presentation. Those of you who have been paying attention know that I was squeezing in the National Book Festival before I went to my high school reunion, and I therefore had to leave by 2:00. My good buddy spoke at 3:30. Without bending the space-time continuum, I didn’t know how to see his session — which I knew would be wonderful.

But here is the beauty of the Internet. His talk is already up at the Library of Congress National Book Festival site, along with all those other people who spoke. You can get to Mo’s talk here — just click on the tiny little word under his name that says webcast. If you haven’t seen his lecture before, make time to watch this. Mo is an incredible speaker, along with being a great guy, great illustrator, great author, and great sport.

And a Hot Man of Children’s Literature. Don’t forget that honor. I can prove it, ’cause I’ve got a picture.

After my one-picture photo session, the family and I visited the PBS tent, where the girls got free Maya dolls from the show Maya and Miguel. We saw a bit of Louis Sachar’s talk, but it was so packed we were outside in the rain. Not being that dedicated, we moved on to drier pastures. We spent the rest of the time in the State tent where the various states’ libraries had tables with handouts and occasional swag. The kids were encouraged to take around a map and get each state stamped as they visited. Honestly, I’m not sure what this accomplished for any of us, but the kids seemed to enjoy the process and getting the occasional free pencil or ruler.

And as the clock struck two (somewhere it did, I suppose), we booked it (ha ha) to the car. We did stop to grab a street vendor hot dog and pretzel — because yes, we were that hungry.

Thanks for joining me on this reflective journey of the National Book Festival. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a video to watch.

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