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Literary Stars Shine at 15th Annual National Book Festival

Laura Lippman, Al Roker, Jane Smiley and others are scheduled to attend

Library of Congress National Book Festival

Attention all book lovers! On Saturday, Sept. 5, the 15th annual Library of Congress National Book Festival will be held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. The event is free and open to the public. AARP is a charter sponsor.

More than 175 best-selling authors, poets and illustrators will appear. They include writers such as Laura Lippman, Al Roker, Jane Smiley, David McCullough, Louise Erdrich, Tom Brokaw, Kate DiCamillo (this year's national ambassador for young people's literature), David Baldacci, Walter Mosley and Sarah MacLean.

There will be book signings, author talks, panel discussions as well as activities for children. A number of celebrated writers from Latin America will be featured.

This year marks another anniversary. Two hundred years ago, the Library of Congress acquired Thomas Jefferson's personal library. To honor him, the festival's theme this year is Jefferson's quote, "I cannot live without books."

(Video) From Breaking News to Beating Cancer: Former NBC anchor and best-selling author Tom Brokaw, 75, opens up about being diagnosed with multiple myeloma in his new memoir, A Lucky Life Interrupted. He writes about his cancer and the importance of caregivers like his wife, Meredith, and physician daughter Jennifer, as well as how his illness — now in remission — changed him. Brokaw's 1998 best-seller The Greatest Generation, about World War II and America, became a cultural touchstone.

(Video) Crime Solver Creator: Best-selling crime writer Laura Lippman shares the creative journey that took her from a childhood passion for reading to Baltimore Sun reporter with a relentless yearning to write fiction. She wrote seven mysteries in seven years while employed as a journalist full time, getting up at 6 a.m. daily to write before work. Lippman's newest tale, Hush Hush, starring her beloved Baltimore private investigator Tess Monaghan, was released in paperback Sept. 1.

The book festival runs from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (doors open at 9 a.m.) at the convention center, 801 Mt. Vernon Place, N.W., Washington, DC

Deirdre Donahue is books editor for AARP media.

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