Virtual Bookfest/Festival du livre promises broad Canadian line-up

BookFest/Festival du livre will take a virtual approach this year to bringing an outstanding line-up of Canadian authors to the public October 15 to 18, entirely free of charge.

The festival, in its 19th year, will deliver a varied and full slate of diverse voices from BIPOC and LGBTQ2S+ authors, fiction and non-fiction perspectives -- highlighted each year by the Poetry Café. This year’s Saturday evening spotlight event will feature Desmond Cole, bestselling author of, The Skin We’re In: A Year of Black Resistance and Power.

Also featured this year are Shanti Mootoo, recently long-listed for the Giller Prize for her fifth novel, Polar Vortex; Stephen Heighton, one of five recently announced finalists for the Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction; Cree/Dene author, musician, and broadcaster Carol Rose GoldenEagle; David Ly, whose poetry explores identity, homophobia, and anti-Asian racism; and Hana Shafi, writer and artist internationally known for her empowering illustrations under the alias Frizz Kid.

As well, BookFest/Festival du livre remains committed to francophone literature. On Friday evening, Mireille Messier, Andrée Poulin and Sonia-Sophie Courdeau will present their latest works.

The festival also includes such home-grown talent as Madeline Sonik, originally from Windsor, whose new short story collection, Fontainebleau, is based loosely on her old east Windsor neighbourhood; fiction writer Kristyn Dunnion, originally from Kingsville; and poets Laurie Smith, Dorothy Mahoney, Daniel Lockhart, and Samantha Badaoa.

Registration is required to access all sessions and can be found at