It’s always great to know that no matter what, people are still reading! And what’s more fun than “freelaxing” as Alex used to say, with a great book, a tall, frosty glass of lemonade, and a summer afternoon ahead of you? Or, if you get more ambitious, you could spend the summer on a reader’s road trip, traveling from one book festival to another. There are plenty to choose from!
Book festival — the whole idea is wonderful, isn’t it? Here are a few that sound appealingly colorful. There’s “Aspen Summer Words,” complete with readings, panels, and receptions. There’s even a two-day Reader’s Retreat — a sort of super book-club marathon that takes place at a spa. Sign me up!
After Aspen, you might hop over to the “Athens” of the Midwest for the “Iowa City Book Festival” for a dose of readings, panels, book arts demos, and book-themed events hosted by local businesses. Next, you could drop in on the 31st “Annual Steinbeck Festival,” hosted by the Steinbeck Center in Salinas, California. There are guided tours of Steinbeck’s stomping ground, a production of Of Mice and Men, and talks about Steinbeck’s writing and social vision. And when September rolls around, you can head off to the “AJC Decatur Book Festival,” a 3-day happening with readings, music, a writers’ conference, poetry slams, and a street fair.
How wonderful to attend any of these events, even as an armchair traveler — and to imagine streets filled with roving families of readers hungrily gobbling up words like strawberry ice cream. What a delight. There’s still quite a bit of summer left. What’s on your summer reading list?