Numerous literary events take place throughout downtown Bethesda during the Bethesda Literary Festival. Search by day or scroll through the full list.

Click here for a printable schedule. Please note that the most up-to-date information is online.
Friday   •   Saturday   •   Sunday

Friday, April 15

7pm – Award-Winning Essays & Short Stories
Hyatt Regency Bethesda
Adult and high school winners from the Bethesda Literary Festival’s Essay & Short Story Contest will read their work and receive awards. 

7pm – Fabulous Female Fictionists
The Writer’s Center
Join New York Times bestselling authors Kate Alcott, A Touch of Stardust, and Dolen Perkins-Valdez, Balm, as they discuss their latest novels.

8:30pm – Spy Storytellers
The Writer’s Center
David E. Hoffman, author of true crime mystery The Billion Dollar Spy, and David Ignatius, prize-winning Washington Post columnist and author of The Director discuss their CIA-based books.

Saturday, April 16

10am - Children's Story Time
Barnes & Noble
Enjoy traditional and new favorite stories for children read by Barnes & Noble's fabulous children's booksellers! Ages 3-7

11am – Presidential Prose
Residence Inn Bethesda
Join author Thomas Mallon, Finale: A Novel of the Reagan Years, and award-winning author Joanne Bamberger, Love Her, Love Her Not: The Hillary Paradox, for a discussion a past president and a presidential hopeful.

12:30pm – Capital Dames
Residence Inn Bethesda
Award winning “Living Legend” bestselling author and political commentator Cokie Roberts, offers a riveting look at Washington, D.C. during the Civil War in Capital Dames.

2pm – The Man Who Would Not be Washington
Residence Inn Bethesda
Jonathan Horn is an author and former White House presidential speechwriter whose new Robert E. Lee biography, The Man Who Would Not Be Washington, made The Washington Post bestseller list.

2pm – Family Story Time
Bethesda Library

Shawn K. Stout discusses her newest book, A Tiny Piece of Sky, a humorous and heartbreaking story about sisters, spies, and World War II on the American home front. An event for children ages 8 & up.

2pm - A Field Guide to Award Silences
Gallery B

Some people are born awkward. Some achieve awkwardness. Some have awkwardness thrust upon them. Washington Post columnist Alexandra Petri is all three. Join her for a discussion of her memoir, A Field Guide to Award Silences.

5pm – Poetry Readings and Awards
Gallery B
Hear readings from former Maryland poet laureate Linda Pastan, poet Barbara Goldberg and the winners of the Bethesda Poetry Contest.

Sunday, April 17

11am – Fantastic Fiction
Hyatt Regency Bethesda
Join Los Angeles Times Book Prize nominee Ariel S. Winter, Barren Cove and author Paul Lisicky, The Narrow Door as they discuss their compelling novels.

12:30pm – Washing the Dead
Hyatt Regency Bethesda
Award-winning writer Michelle Brafman discusses her acclaimed, moving novel Washing the Dead.

2pm – One Nation, Under Gods
Gallery B

Join author Peter Manseau for a riveting discussion of his book, One Nation, Under Gods, a groundbreaking new look at the history of America and religion.

2pm – Poetry Reading
The Writer’s Center
Visiting poet Martin Espada reads from his recent collection, Vivas to Those Who Have Failed. The reading will be followed by a reception and book signing. Free admission.

2:30pm – Bilingual Family Story Time
Bethesda Library
Bilingual author and illustrator Lulu Delacre discusses ¡Olinguito, de la A a la Z! Descubriendo el bosque nublado; Olinguito, from A to Z! Unveiling the Cloud Forest. An event for families and children of all ages. 

3pm – Talk About Taste
Gallery B
Author John McQuaid will enlighten the audience through a talk of his latest book, Tasty: The Art and Science of What We Eat.  

3pm – “If I Were President
Hyatt Regency Bethesda
Winners of the Bethesda Literary Festival’s Youth Writing Contest, “
If I Were President,” read their stories and receive prizes.

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