African American children’s books take centre stage at Bologna

African American children’s books take centre stage at Bologna

Books by African American authors, the role of women in children’s literature and publishing for toddlers are amongst the themes of this year’s Bologna Children’s Book Fair.

This year the fair is hosting ‘Black Books Matter: African American Words and Colours’, an event about the Coretta Scott King Award, which is given every year to African American authors and illustrators of YA and children’s books, as well as a conference devoted to books for children aged 0-3. Other events include ‘Listen Up!’, an event on audiobooks, ‘Time is on Their Side’, a discussion about the portrayal of women in children’s literature and ‘Children’s Booksellers on Stage’, an international children’s booksellers conference.

This year the Bologna Children’s Book Fair is taking place from the 1st to 4th April and the organisers expect 1,400 exhibitors from more than 70 countries.

The guest country is Switzerland and the main exhibit will be ‘The ABC of Switzerland’ and 26 Swiss illustrators will create a work of art representing every letter from A to Z, with each one portraying an aspect of Swiss culture.

Another 76 artists from around the world will show their work in the Illustrators Exhibition and three additional exhibitions will be dedicated to individual illustrators: Vendi Vernić, Igor Oleynikov and Masha Titova.

Authors who are attending the fair include Christopher Myers and Ekua Holmes from the US and Kęstutis Kasparavičius from Lithuania.