Book lovers can indulge in all things about the printed word at the annual BookCon this weekend at the Javits Center.
More than 150 authors and celebrities, such as “Fifty Shades of Grey” scribe EL James and professional wrestler/actor John Cena, will be on site to participate in panels, sign autographs and talk about recent book projects.
Fans can also hear directly from showrunners for Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” and AMC’s “NOS4A2” — two popular books that have made the transition from page to screen.
“It’s a great place for people to interact and mingle and meet their favorite authors and creators,” said Jenny Martin, event manager for BookExpo and BookCon at ReedPOP, the company behind New York Comic Con, the pop culture juggernaut that takes over the Javits Center every fall. “We have a very robust lineup we think our fans will be really excited about.”
While BookExpo is an event for people in the publishing industry, BookCon is designed specifically for book fans.
“BookCon is one of my favorite book events,” said Kami Garcia, author of “Beautiful Creatures” and the upcoming “Teen Titans: Raven.” “You go in excited. You know you are going to get such positivity from people.”
Garcia said it’s heartening to see fans happily chatting as they wait on long lines, clutching well-worn copies of her books.
Those who come to her Saturday panel can expect to be treated to exclusive reveals about her “Teen Titans” book, which is illustrated by Gabriel Picolo and comes out in July.
BookCon is known for attracting popular young adult authors like Garcia and Cassandra Clare with a loyal, passionate fan base.
The diverse offerings also include LGBTQ authors and entertainers as well as a slate of panels. In recognition of Pride Month in June, a “Read with Pride” panel on Saturday invites YA and middle-grade authors to talk about their LGBTQ characters, while Sunday’s “Love Is Love” examines the need for more inclusive love stories in books.
Among notable names, EL James will discuss her new romance, “The Mister,” while Sara Quin and Tegan Quin, twins behind the indie pop duo Tegan & Sara, are set to discuss their upcoming memoir, titled “High School,” both on Saturday.
Martin said BookCon also boasts a family-friendly vibe. A special Family HQ area provides activities and programming for kids. John Cena is scheduled to stop by there on Saturday to read from his children’s book. “Elbow Grease vs. Motozilla.”
“Keeping kids excited about reading when they are about to be out of school for the summer is always a good thing,” she said.
IF YOU GO
BookCon is Saturday and Sunday at the Javits Center | 655 W. 34th St. | tickets $10-$45 at bookcon.com