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Kick-off event at Brigham Square from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Fans of literature from throughout Utah are invited to the Brigham Young University campus Saturday, June 4, for the opening event of the Utah Festival of Books.

BYU will host the kick-off festival from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Brigham Square adjacent to the Wilkinson Student Center. The University of Utah campus will be the site of a follow-up festival Saturday, Sept. 10.

"Everyone is invited to attend and celebrate reading by enjoying wholesome entertainment, including vibrant performances, author signings, literacy activities, engaging guest speakers and more," said BYU Bookstore director Roger Reynolds.

Festival attendees can meet New York Times best-selling authors, including James Dashner, Ally Condie, Kiersten White and Brandon Mull.

“This will be a great time for families and children to meet some of their favorite authors,” Reynolds said. "We invite everyone to promote children’s literacy by attending the book festivals and encouraging a child to read today."

Elementary school students are invited to sign up for the Read Today program during the June festival and report on their summer reading progress to claim prizes at the end-of-summer festival at the University of Utah Sept. 10.

Pre-festival activities include an Essay Contest and an Altered Book Competition open to all age groups. The Essay Contest will address the theme “Books That Have Changed My Life.” Essays must be submitted to the BYU Bookstore General Books Department by May 16.

The Altered Book Competition takes an artistic approach to recycle books by creative means into modern works of art. According to the International Society of Altered Book Artists, an altered book is any book, old or new, that is rebound, painted, cut, burned, folded, added to, collaged in, gold-leafed, rubber stamped, drilled or otherwise adorned. 

Altered books may be as simple as adding a drawing or text to a page, or as complex as creating an intricate book sculpture. Altered book entries are due June 1 at the Bookstore's General Book Department.

Contest entry forms and information, festival schedule of events and other activities for the Utah Festival of Books are available online at Those interested in being festival volunteers should contact Elaine Huish at (801) 422-6786,

The Utah Festival of Books celebrates the beauty and power of the written word. Sponsored by the BYU Bookstore and KSL 5 Television, the festival is a proud supporter of the Read Today literacy program.

For more information, contact Norm Nielson, academic resources consultant for the BYU Bookstore, (801) 422-2939,

Follow BYU events on Twitter: @BYUcalendar.

Writer: Frank Tovar