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Literary Giants Margaret Atwood, Omar El Akkad and Colson Whitehead to Book-End Toronto International Festival of Authors

Published on August 30, 2021

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The Toronto International Festival of Authors today announced two special virtual events that will book-end the 2021 Festival.

On September 22 at 7pm ET, TIFA will co-present PEN Canada’s inaugural Graeme Gibson Talk, titled Hope in Strange Paradises: Dystopias and their Bright Spots. Award-winning authors Omar El Akkad and Margaret Atwood will be in conversation with CBC Radio IDEAS host Nahlah Ayed to discuss dystopias and storytelling. Following his successful debut, American War in 2019, El Akkad’s latest novel, What Strange Paradise, offers a profoundly moving look at the global refugee crisis. Atwood is the author of more than 50 books of fiction, poetry, critical essays and graphic novels. Her collected essays of the last 17 years, Burning Questions, will be published in 2022. The free event honours the legacy and creative spirit of renowned author and writers’ advocate Graeme Gibson (1934–2019) and is the first in an annual series. This hour-long conversation is generously supported by Penguin Random House Canada, and will be available to watch for 72 hours.

With Colson Whitehead in Conversation with Randy Boyagoda, the literary festivities continue through to November. On November 17 at 7pm ET, two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author Colson Whitehead will join writer, critic and scholar Randy Boyagoda in conversation to introduce Whitehead’s highly anticipated new novel, Harlem Shuffle, which will be released on September 14. A gloriously entertaining novel of heists, shakedowns and rip-offs, set in Harlem in the 1960s, is an hilarious family saga masquerading as a crime novel and a social novel about race and power. Registration includes a copy of the book when purchased at FestivalofAuthors.ca, at a cost of $38 (including shipping and HST). Registration will also be included with in-store purchases of the book, upon its release date, at the UofT Bookstore, priced at $36+ HST. The event will be available to watch for 72 hours.

The full programme slate for the 2021 edition of the Toronto International Festival of Authors will be announced in the coming weeks, but you don’t have to wait to register for these special events. Save your spot below!

Omar El Akkad, Margaret Atwood and Colson Whitehead banner

TIFA Blog

Literary Giants Margaret Atwood, Omar El Akkad and Colson Whitehead to Book-End Toronto International Festival of Authors

Published on August 30, 2021

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