Every fall, rain or shine, you can count on the annual Twin Cities Book Festival to entertain, illuminate and enthrall. Sponsored by Rain Taxi, the 24-year-old festival will take place all day Oct. 12 at the State Fairgrounds in Falcon Heights. As always, it is free.
The lineup is rich with local writers, children's writers, national writers, international writers and poets. (Many of these writers tick more than one of those boxes, of course.)
The full schedule is online at raintaxi.com, but here are some highlights:
Leif Enger, author of "Peace Like a River." His newest novel, "Virgil Wander," is set along the North Shore and has recently been released in paperback. Enger is Minnesotan through and through, now living in Duluth.
William Kent Krueger, famous for getting his start by writing in St. Paul coffee shops and now even more famous for the books he produced there. He's the author of the bestselling Cork O'Connor mystery series, but his new book, "This Tender Land," is a stand-alone coming-of-age novel set during the Great Depression.
Sheila O'Connor, Minnesota Book Award-winning writer of novels for teens and adults, is the author of a new hybrid book for adults — a memoir laced with fiction. ("Evidence of V.")
Benjamin Percy, author of "Red Moon" and "The Wilding," has a new book, a collection of short stories ("Suicide Woods") published by Graywolf Press.
Faith Sullivan, author of "The Cape May" and "Good Night, Mr. Wodehouse," has a new novel set in Harvester, Minn. — "Ruby & Roland," a love story.
Douglas Kearney, author of six collections of poetry and winner of a Whiting Award and many other honors. A Californian, he now lives and teaches in the Twin Cities.
Christopher Ingraham, the Washington Post writer who declared Red Lake County, Minn., the worst place to live in the United States — and then moved there. His new book is "If You Lived Here You'd Be Home By Now."
Bao Phi, poet and picture-book writer. "A Different Pond" was highly lauded, winning the Charlotte Zolotow Award and a Minnesota Book Award and being named a Caldecott Honor Book. His new book is "My Footprints."
Kao Kalia Yang, author of the award-winning memoirs "The Latehomecomer" and "The Song Poet." Her newest release is a picture book, "A Map Into the World."
Peter Bognanni, a Twin Cities writer whose first book for adults ("The House of Tomorrow") was made into a movie and also won an Alex Award, which perhaps propelled him into a career writing for young adults. His new book is "This Book Is Not Yet Rated." Bognanni teaches at Macalester College.
Kimberly Blaeser is a member of the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe and now lives in Wisconsin. A poet, she is the author most recently of "Copper Yearning."
Linda Boström Knausgård is an author and poet in Sweden, as well as a producer of documentaries for Swedish radio. Hew new book is a novel, "Welcome to America."
Lewis Hyde, translator and essayist, is author of "The Gift" and winner of many prestigious awards. His newest book is "A Primer for Forgetting."
Susan Straight, author of "I've Been in Sorrow's Kitchen and Licked Out All the Pots" and other notable novels, is a National Book Award finalist. Her newest book is a memoir, "In the Country of Women," which looks at the women in her life and the life of her husband.
I'm out of room, but Rain Taxi is not out of writers — there are many others who will be in attendance, as well as a book fair, a children's area, hundreds of exhibitors and more. It's all free.
Laurie Hertzel is the Star Tribune senior editor for books. On Twitter: @StribBooks. Facebook: facebook.com/startribunebooks