Brooklyn Book Festival featuring an Art Spiegelman, Jules Feiffer debate on the impact of comics

Art Spiegelman, who received a Pulitzer Prize for

Art Spiegelman, who received a Pulitzer Prize for his graphic novel "Maus," was the subject of the "CO-MIX" retrospective on displayn the Museum Ludwig in Cologne, Germany. (Sept. 21, 2012) (Credit: AP)

In its eighth year, the Brooklyn Book Festival has become such an institution that it's now preceded by a week of "Bookend Events": literary-themed screenings, parties, games and more in bookstores and other venues across the borough. These begin Monday, and culminate with the festival itself, which takes place Sept. 22 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in and around Brooklyn Borough Hall Plaza.

This year's BoBi (Best of Brooklyn Inc.) Award goes to Newbery Award medalist Lois Lowry, who appears at St. Francis College auditorium Sunday at 1 p.m. Perhaps it's to honor her that the lineup features so many interesting events involving children's books, including one of our five highlights below. All our highlights and all festival events are free; some Bookends charge admission. Tickets are not required, but popular events fill up early. Complete listings are at brooklynbookfestival.org.

Bookend Events

1. PANEL DISCUSSION ON JOHN O'HARA

WHAT Novelist E.L. Doctorow, Paris Review editor Lorin Stein and New York Times writer-at-large Chip McGrath discuss the author who had more stories published in The New Yorker than anyone in the history of the magazine.

WHEN | WERE Monday at 7 p.m. PowerHouse Arena, 37 Main St.

2. NERD JEOPARDY!

WHAT Three teams compete for literary trivia glory in the familiar "Jeopardy!" format. Participating authors include Jennifer Gilmore, Jonathan Ames and a surprise or two. Wine and prizes will be offered.

WHEN | WHERE Tuesday at 7 p.m. BookCourt, 163 Court St.

3. A LITERARY SALON

WHAT NYU professor Pamela Newkirk and Washington Post journalist Wil Haygood discuss the latter's book "The Butler," now a movie starring Forest Whitaker, about a man who served eight presidents from 1952 to 1986.

WHEN | WHERE Sept. 21 at 3 p.m. Skylight Gallery at Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corp., 1368 Fulton St.

Festival Events

4. CELEBRATE BANNED BOOKS WEEK

WHAT Three young adult authors talk about censorship, a subject they know firsthand. Francesca Lia Block's books ("Weetzie Bat," "Witch Baby," etc.) have been attacked by censors. Lauren Myracle's series of Internet novels ("ttyl," "ttfn" and "l8r, g8r") ranked No. 1 on the American Library Association's list of frequently challenged books in 2009 and 2011. David Levithan is a best-selling author ("Two Boys Kissing") and founding editor of PUSH, a YA imprint of Scholastic focusing on edgier material for young adults.

WHEN | WHERE Sept. 22 at 11 a.m. Mainstage, Borough Hall Plaza.

5. ART SPIEGELMAN AND JULES FEIFFER IN CONVERSATION

WHAT The two Pulitzer Prize-winning artists -- Spiegelman for his graphic novel "Maus," Feiffer for his editorial cartooning in the Village Voice -- debate the purpose and impact of comics art, its history and development, and their visions of its future. Featuring screen projections.

WHEN | WHERE Sept. 22 at 4 p.m. St. Francis Auditorium, 180 Remsen St.

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