The Wisconsin Book Festival will present a wide variety of virtual author programs this fall, with the season’s signature celebration taking place Thursday–Saturday, October 15–17.

The fall celebration will feature 16 events over three days, including:

  • seven-time NAACP Image Award winner Nikki Giovanni, the first recipient of the Rosa Parks Woman of Courage Award, for Make Me Rain (October 15, 7 p.m.)
  • Angie Kim, Edgar Award winner for Best First Novel, and Booker Prize nominee Kiley Reid for their respective books Miracle Creek and Such a Fun Age (October 15, 8:30 p.m.)
  • Jennifer Palmieri, former White House Communications Director for President Barack Obama, for She Proclaims (October 17, 11:30 a.m.)
  • Pulitzer Prize finalist and Hurston/Wright Legacy Award winner Laila Lalami for Conditional Citizens (October 17, 1 p.m.)
  • Paola Ramos, journalist and former deputy director of Hispanic media for the 2016 Hillary Clinton campaign, for Finding Latinx (October 17, 2:30 p.m.)
  • Brian Greene, Director of Columbia University’s Center for Theoretical Physics, and Guggenheim Fellow Janna Levin for their books Until the End of Time and Black Hole Survival Guide (October 17, 7 p.m.)
  • celebrated conservationist Terry Tempest Williams for Erosion (October 17, 8:30 p.m.)

When the festival was forced to cancel in-person author programs due to COVID-19 last spring, it shifted all programming online. Since then, the festival has hosted more than 20 live-streamed events, all of which are recorded and archived so they can be conveniently watched anytime at

In addition to the fall celebration, the festival offers author events throughout the year. The new festival season will begin in mid-September with events running through December. These include:

  • Yaa Gyasi, author of Homegoing, for her new novel, Transcendent Kingdom (September 17)
  • Paul Begala, political consultant and commentator, for You’re Fired (September 21)
  • Dick Wagner, scholar and activist, for Coming Out, Moving Forward (September 23)
  • Katie Hill, former U.S. Representative, for She Will Rise (October 1)
  • Claudia Rankine, acclaimed poet and playwright, for Just Us (November 16)
  • Danielle Evans, former UW-Madison professor, for The Office of Historical Corrections (December 2)
  • Jane Smiley, Pulitzer Prize Winner, for Perestroika in Paris (December 3)

The Wisconsin Book Festival is presented by Madison Public Library in partnership with Madison Public Library Foundation. For program details and the full schedule, go to Also, be sure to follow the festival on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for bonus content.

The foundation thanks its many contributors for making the festival possible:

Marvin J. Levy

Pleasant T. Rowland Foundation

Cheryl Rosen Weston Estate

National Endowment for the Arts 
American Girl Fund for Children

The Bass Family
Friends of the UW-Madison Libraries
Great Dane Pub & Brewing Company
Madison Gas & Electric Foundation
University Research Park

A Room of One’s Own

Park Hotel
Wisconsin Public Radio

Bonnie Beavan
Tom DeChant & Paul Gibler
Al Friedman & Susan Tikalsky 
Erica & Mark Gehrig
Stu Levitan
Anne Lucke
UW-Madison Creative Writing