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The Books of CWBF 2021!

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September 8, 2021

The following is a selection of books written by authors featured in the 2021 Central Wisconsin Book Festival (CWBF)

From fiction to nonfiction to poetry, this year's CWBF will be a great opportunity for members of the community to hear from notable writers with diverse backgrounds. 

Check out the following items before or after the festival to explore their creations:


Book Cover: RAFT OF STARS

"RAFT OF STARS" by ANDREW GRAFF

Fleeing into the woods believing that they have accidentally murdered an abusive parent, two young boys, unaware that they have become the focus of a desperate search, navigate dangerous natural threats in their effort to survive. 

Book Cover: HOPE IS THE THING: WISCONSINITES ON PERSEVERANCE IN A PANDEMIC

"HOPE IS THE THING: WISCONSINITES ON PERSEVERANCE IN A PANDEMIC" by B. J. HOLLARS

In March 2020, as a pandemic began to ravage our world, writer and professor B. J. Hollars started a collaborative writing project to bridge the emotional challenges created by our physical distancing. Drawing upon Emily Dickinson's famous poem "Hope is the thing with feathers," Hollars called on Wisconsinites to reflect on their own glimpses of hope in the era of COVID-19. The call resulted in an avalanche of submissions, each reflecting on hope's ability to persist and flourish, even in the darkest times.

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Book Cover: MY JOURNEY FROM BOXING RING TO BOARDROOM

"MY JOURNEY FROM BOXING RING TO BOARDROOM" by HéCTOR COLóN

    Far more than a business memoir, "From Boxing Ring to Boardroom" follows Héctor Colón from his challenging childhood through his international boxing success to his current position as CEO of one of the Midwest's largest nonprofit organizations.

Book Cover: WHY BUSHWICK BILL MATTERS

"WHY BUSHWICK BILL MATTERS" by CHARLES L. HUGHES

An astute chronicle of the life and cultural significance of Bushwick Bill, who remixed spectacle as he exposed and exploited ableist and racist assumptions to become a singular voice in rap and the relentless battle over free speech in the United States.

Additional works by this author:

    Book Cover: MODERN JUNGLES

    "MODERN JUNGLES" by PAO LOR

    As a five-year-old boy, Pao Lor joined thousands of Hmong who fled for their lives through the jungles of Laos in the aftermath of war. After a difficult and perilous journey that neither of his parents survived, he reached the safety of Thailand, but the young refugee boy's challenges were only just beginning.

    NONFICTION

    Book Cover:  CORRECTIONAL

    " CORRECTIONAL" by RAVI SHANKAR

    Shankar’s bold and complex self-portrait—and portrait of America—challenges us to rethink our complicity in the criminal justice system and mental health policies that perpetuate inequity and harm. 

    CHILDREN'S BOOKS

    Book Cover: POKKO AND THE DRUM

    "POKKO AND THE DRUM" by MATTHEW FORSYTHE

    The award-winning illustrator of "My Name Is Elizabeth!" presents the story of a little frog, Pokko, who takes a magical drum deep into the quiet forest, where her playing draws the attention of musical animal friends.

    Additional works by this author / illustrator:

    Book Cover: WHAT IF A FISH

    "WHAT IF A FISH" by ANIKA FAJARDO

    A Columbian-American youth who wants to embrace the culture of his beloved late Papa spends a summer with his brother in South America, where he reflects on his father’s fishing tournament achievements and struggles to understand his own identity.

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    Book Cover: THE LINE TENDER

    "THE LINE TENDER" by KATE ALLEN

    When a Great White shark appears in the water near in her sleepy Rockport community, triggering a devastating tragedy, a 12-year-old girl must pick up the work of her late marine-biologist mother to lift the cloud of grief hanging over her community.

    Book Cover: PEACE

    "PEACE" by BAPTISTE PAUL

    From saying hello and pronouncing your friend's name correctly to giving more than you take and saying I'm sorry, this simple concept book explores definitions of peace and actions small and big that foster it.

    Additional works by these authors:

    Book Cover: ASTRID AND APOLLO

    "ASTRID AND APOLLO" by V. T. BIDANIA

    Astrid is afraid of the dark and doesn't want to go on her family camping trip. But her twin brother, Apollo, is excited. When they encounter scary things such as crawly bugs and the creepy dark, Apollo helps his twin through them. And when they encounter the scariest thing of all, Astrid might just be the one to save the starry campout.

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    Book Cover: SHIRLEY & JAMILA SAVE THEIR SUMMER

    "SHIRLEY & JAMILA SAVE THEIR SUMMER" by GILLIAN GOERZ

    Befriending an unusual girl after moving to a new neighborhood, Jamilia discovers that her new friend is the community’s best kid detective and becomes a crime-solving partner to help a young boy track down his missing pet gecko.

    TEEN BOOKS

    Book Cover: WE WILL ALWAYS BE HERE

    "WE WILL ALWAYS BE HERE" by JENNY KALVAITIS

    This inspiring and educational book presents examples of LGBTQ+ activism throughout Wisconsin's history for young people to explore and discuss.


    For more about the Central Wisconsin Book Festival, visit www.mcpl.us/cwbf!


    Authors Books Catalogs and Collections Central Wisconsin Book Festival E-books Events Graphic Novels Poetry Reading Recommendations

    image credit: Image by Ben Krombholz, Marathon County Public Library staff.