The programme of events for the Malta Book Festival is out. The Festival will take place at the Mediterranean Conference Centre (MCC) from 7 to 11 November. This year the programme features well over 80 events that include book launches and presentations featuring local and international authors, conferences, talks and fun activities for children. The events are set up either by the National Book Council or by the participants in the Festival, which include Malta’s and international publishers, booksellers and NGOs.
New this year, the Malta Book Festival will double its space. There will be two exhibition halls –
La Sacra Infermeria (ground floor) will host publishers, NGOs and libraries (both local and for- eign), whereas book sellers and bookshops will be hosted in the La Vallette Hall (lower-ground floor).
The highlight of this year’s Malta Book Festival is world-renowned author and activist Naomi Klein, who will be interviewed by local journalist Matthew Vella on Friday 9 November at 8 pm. Klein is the author of international bestseller The Shock Doctrine about disaster capitalism, which increased Klein’s prominence, with the New Yorker judging her ‘the most visible and in- fluential figure on the American left’.
Another highlight is the conference on ‘Literature in the Diaspora’ on Wednesday 7 November at 7 pm. Get to know how local and international writers Lou Drofenik, Nikola Petković, Vera Duarte and Philip Ò Ceallaigh reflect the realities of displacement in their works.
Other interesting events organised by the NBC are the discussion led by journalist James Debono about the legacy of murdered journalist and blogger Daphne Caruana Galizia, and the celebration of Maltese poet Victor Fenech, the winner of last year’s National Book Prize Life- time Achievement Award. Other foreign guests are British novelist, essayist and translator Tim Parks, and British writer Michael Amherst. The film Camilla by Shadeena, adapted from Clare Azzopardi’s short story that goes by the same name and winner of the NBC Short-Film Literary Contest, will be premiered on Saturday 10 November at 8:30 pm.
As with previous years, the NBC makes it a point to encourage children to read and familiarise themselves with the book culture. At this year’s Festival, there will be readings from Czech and Slovak literature, while the Reading Champions ceremony will be awarding children who have excelled in reading or inspired others to read. New to this edition of the festival is the participa- tion of the Malta Visual and Performing Arts School, that will be organising activities for children during weekday mornings based on last year’s winner of the Terramaxka book prize.
Another main event not to be missed are the shows by DANUSAN, who will be showing the importance of reading in their own hilarious way. The 1 hour and 30 minute shows are excel- lent for families with children, and will be held on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. For more infor- mation visit www.showshappening.com.
The NBC would also like to remind the public that there will be a shuttle service from Publiju bus stop near the Independence monument in Floriana to MCC. This service is free of charge and will be operating on Saturday and Sunday only, running every hou