Mark your calendar for the inaugural

Oakland Book Festival

Sunday, May 31, 2015, 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Oakland City Hall, 1 Frank Ogawa Plaza, Oakland CA

Free and open to the public

One day – Seven Hours – 90 Writers – 40 Events

Inside Oakland City Hall, 90 novelists, poets, historians, philosophers, journalists, and activists will engage with the audience in panels, interviews, and open debate. The event features national literary luminaries Edwidge Danticat, Hector Tobar, Tracy K. Smith, Paul Beatty, and Astra Taylor. Participating Bay Area writers include Rick Prelinger, Elaine Brown, Vikram Chandra, Ben Fong-Torres, Mark Danner, and Anthony Marra. A full list of activities and speakers can be found at Join us for conversations about gentrification, multi-culturalism, whistle-blowing, city life, and the future of American literature.


Read. Debate. Celebrate.


The festival is looking for volunteers!

In Collaboration with:

Lapham's Quarterly, Litquake, University of California Press, City of Oakland, Pen Oakland, Fairyland, Museum of Children's Art, Oakland Public Library, Oaklandish, Before Columbus Foundation and Prolific Group.

Children’s Area – Music – Booksellers – Food

The outdoor part of the festival, on Frank Ogawa Plaza, will have a dedicated children’s area with performances from Children’s Fairyland, “favorite-stories” read by librarians from the Oakland Public Library, and book-making projects courtesy of the Museum of Children’s Art. There will be live music in the amphitheater all day. Booksellers, magazine publishers and local literary organizations will bring you the latest writing and literary news ; and you'll be able to buy all kind of great food from our food trucks.

Don't Miss...

Opening Night Plenary

Saturday May 30th, 6pm to 8pm

Reading Oakland: Stories from our City’s Literary Past

Key Note address: Lewis H. Lapham

Oakland City Hall, 1 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza

Followed by a wine reception


Donate to the Festival!

The Oakland Book Festival is a one-day literary event dedicated to books, ideas, and the pleasures of literacy. It aims to serve the reading public, to encourage debate, and to celebrate the City of Oakland. All events are free and open to the public. OBF is a 501 c(3) non-profit organization.  


The Oakland Book Festival was the recipient of the 2015 East Bay Express Readers' Poll Award for Best New Cultural Event.