We bring you updates on the African Book Festival in Germany, the Heroe Book Festival in Kenya, and the Cairo International Book Fair in Egypt.
African Book Festival 2021: January 28 – 29, 2021
African Book Festival is a literary festival organised by InterKontinental in the German city of Berlin; its first iteration, curated by Olumide Popoola, was headlined by Chris Abani. In 2019, the festival, curated by Tsitsi Dangarembga, had Ben Okri as the headliner and many leading writers attending.
The 2020 edition of the festival was planned around Lusophone literature in Africa with Kalaf Epalanga as the curator and José Eduardo Agualusa as the headliner. It was not to be as the global Covid-19 pandemic put a stop to many cultural activities including the African Book Fair.
The festival, retaining Kalaf Epalanga as curator, is set to return with a mix of physical events in Munich and Leipzig as well as virtual ones. For its duration, attendees will get to interact with among others Chimeka Garricks, Fiston Mwanza Mujila, Natasha Omokhodion-Kalulu Banda, Rémy Ngamije, Zukiswa Wanner, Martha Fessehatzion, Moses Leo, Ondjaki, Yara Monteiro, José Eduardo Agualusa, Telma Tvon, and Toty Sa’Med
The two events will be hosted by Kalaf Epalanga and streamed live. Information on links for streaming will be availed closer to the day. To keep up, follow InterKontinental’s social media channels on Facebook or Instagram.
Cairo International Book Fair 2021: June 30 – July 15
The Cairo International Book Fair is one of the first major book fairs of the calendar year usually happening in late January. In January 2020, there were around 900 publishers and 40-some vendors for used books who attended the fair with more than 2.5 million reported visitors.
The 2021 edition has been moved until June 30 to July 15, 2021, in an attempt to prevent further spread of Covid-19, the fair’s central committee said.
Heroe Book Fair 2021: March 22-26, 2021
The Heroe Book Fair is intended to bring together Anglophone and Francophone writers, poets, publishers, and literary enthusiasts from Africa and the diaspora yearly in a couple of days celebration of their contributions to the literary world.
The inaugural edition was supposed to happen from July 23rd-July 25th at the Players Theatre, Nakuru, Kenya, under the theme of “Belonging” but the Covid-19 pandemic suddenly struck and the dates had to be moved to March 22-26, 2021.
The inaugural event will now happen virtually and physically with limited movement at the Alliance Française, Mombasa. To support the festival, which is still looking for additional funding, please click here.