PHOTOS: Bay Area Book Festival Brings Together Authors, Publishers and Readers

Raya Rahman, owner and editor of Oakland-based indie publishing company Guba Publishing, her daughter, and bilingual English/Bengali calligrapher Silvia Reshmeen. Guba published bilingual English/Bengali books as well as English books with diverse stories.  (Shia Levitt/KQED)

Book lovers of all ages gathered in downtown Berkeley for the Bay Area Book Festival, a weekend-long event dedicated to literary nerds and curious minds alike. Now in its fifth year, the festival attracts big name authors across several genres, and is known for its focus on social justice issues.

This year's program includes a free outdoor fair with 200 literary exhibits by bookstores, publishers and authors, along with a selection of paid indoor programs.

Attendants highlighted the interactivity of the event, which brought authors, publishers and the public in the same space.

Sunday's events include sessions on Native American authors, climate change and writing about conflict.

Author Heather Jacks with her book ‘Sister Stories,’ about the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. (Shia Levitt/KQED)
Patrice Kennedy, a middle school teacher from Vallejo holds a book she got at the festival. Kennedy says she is especially appreciative of books with children of color on the cover. (Shia Levitt/KQED)
Oakland residents Tandy Solomon (right) and Li Han Chan were among the attendees at the festival on Saturday. "It is this convivial atmosphere in which to discuss ideas and art and the issues of the day," Solomon said. (Shia Levitt/KQED)
The Bay Area Book Festival has set up a free outdoor fair at Martin Luther King Jr. Civic Center Park, in downtown Berkeley. (Shia Levitt/KQED)

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