Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah

Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, the author of "Friday Black," is a National Book Foundation "5 Under 35" honoree. He will be among the speakers at the Virginia Festival of the Book. Photo courtesy of Sarah Lawson. #nosale

More than 250 authors, illustrators and publishing professionals are heading to Charlottesville for the 25th Virginia Festival of the Book, which is set for March 20 to 24, 2019.

Times and locations for events will be revealed when the complete festival schedule is announced on Jan. 14.

The following speakers were announced Monday by the Virginia Festival of the Book:

» Elliot Ackerman, author of “Waiting for Eden” and a past National Book Award finalist.

» Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, author of “Friday Black,” a National Book Foundation “5 Under 35” honoree and finalist for the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Award for Best First Book.

» Raymond Arsenault, a leading civil rights historian and author of “Arthur Ashe: A Life,” the first comprehensive biography of the tennis legend.

» David W. Blight, author of “Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedoms.”

» Tressie McMillan Cottom, author of “Lowe Ed: The Troubling Rise of For-Profit Colleges in the New Economy” and the forthcoming “Thick.”

» Esi Edugyan, author of “Washington Black.”

» Beth Macy, author of “Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors and the Drug Company That Addicted America.”

» Brian Noyes, author of “Red Truck Bakery Cookbook: Gold-Standard Recipes from America’s Favorite Rural Bakery.”

» V.E. Schwab, author of “Vengeful,” winner of the 2018 Goodreads Choice Award for Science Fiction.

Previously announced speakers include Laurie Halse Anderson, Barbara Ehrenreich, Jarrett Krosoczka, Jason Reynolds, Lisa See and Don Winslow.

Most of the festival’s events are free, and tickets remain available for the Read & Lead Lunch with Ehrenreich, the Literary Lunch with See and the Crime Wave Brunch with Winslow.

The full list of speakers can be seen online at, and it can be searched by genre. For tickets and details, visit

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