BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — The Louisiana Center for the Book in the State Library of Louisiana has selected books by Louisiana authors to feature in the 2022 National Book Festival.

A book for both youth books and adult books were selected. The youth book that was selected was When I Was an Alligator by Gayle Webre and the adult book selected was The Hidden History of a Free Black Brotherhood by Fatima Shaik.

Both books will part of the Library of Congress Center for the Book’s Great Reads from Great Places program.

“We appreciate any opportunity to celebrate Louisiana authors,” says Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser, “There are not many better stages to do that on than the Great Reads from Great Places program of the National Book Festival. I am proud to have authors Gayle Webre and Fatima Shaik represent us.”

The National Book Festival will take place on Saturday, Sept. 3, in Washington, D.C. Webre will participate in an online panel discussion with the children’s authors from other states. The panel discussion will be posted on the National Book Festival website and the Library of Congress YouTube channel.

“We are thrilled for the return of an in-person National Book Festival where we can represent Louisiana, just as we are ours at the end of October, and where people from around the world can experience examples of what Louisiana has to offer to the world of literature,” says State Librarian Rebecca Hamilton. “We are just as excited for the opportunity to showcase these two Louisiana authors’ books at the festival and Gayle’s children’s book as part of the virtual programming so that anyone in Louisiana and beyond can share this experience.”

Webre holds a master’s from University of Southwestern Louisiana, working in elementary education for 25 years, and primarily designing curriculums for gifted children.

Shaik is a 2021 Louisiana Writer Award recipient an has written for the Southern Review, Callaloo, Tribes, The Root, In These Times, the Review of Contemporary Fiction, and the New York Times.

Both authors will be making appearances at the Louisiana table signing books.