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Booklandia

What editors, students, and Waldos toted along to the Brooklyn Book Festival.

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Amy Brill, 44, author, The Movement of Stars
What she’s reading: Iggy Peck, Architect and Rosie Revere, Engineer, by Andrea Beaty
“I have two young children, so I also read a lot of things that only have a sentence or two on each page, and some of them are absolutely perfect. Iggy Peck, Architect and Rosie Revere, Engineer, which are books about failure, which is a great lesson for young readers. And humans overall.”

Patrick Marshall, 30, filmmaker
What he’s reading: I Remember, by Georges Perec, and I Remember, by Joe Brainard
“This American guy named Joe Brainard wrote a book called I Remember, but Georges Perec never read it. Someone just told him, ‘It’s this book that’s like 500 things he remembers,’ and every sentence starts, ‘I remember…’ Perec just said, ‘Oh, I’ll steal that.”


Phong Bui, 50, publisher and editor-in-chief of The Brooklyn Rail
“I don’t bring any books. You get 20 to 30 books in a visit. You have to carry them very slowly to your car. I come back for round two sometimes. Normally I buy between 30 and 40 books.”

Rahawa Haile, 29, writer
What she’s reading: By Light We Knew Our Names, by Anne Valente
“I saw Naomi Klein this morning. Then everyone ran off to the climate march. I feel kind of bad for the publishers who are here, just because it’s so much thinner this year with people at the march.”


Stu Watson, 33, founding editor of just-launched lit mag Prelude
What he’s reading: Five Women, by Robert Musil
“So much ink has been spilled about the decline of print media, but there really are a number of remarkable literary journals publishing right now—BOMB, Tin House, The Kenyon Review, and Granta (and, of course, n+1).”

Kate Pawelczyk, 28, communications officer for UNICEF
What’ she’s reading: The Beach Beneath the Streets: Contesting New York City’s Public Spaces, by Benjamin Shepard and Gregory Smithsimon
“I’m South African. I went to my first Brooklyn Book Festival to hear Paul Auster do a reading. I had been obsessed with his books ever since I read City of Glass in university back in South Africa.”


Alyza Liu, 19, student
What she’s reading: Of Metal and Wishes, by Sarah Fine
“It’s essentially a retelling of The Phantom of the Opera set in a steampunk Asian world. It’s about a daughter who works with her father, who is a doctor, taking care of injured workers at a factory that provides cheap labor. It goes a little further than Phantom in that it investigates oppression a lot more.”

Rich Wisneski, 32, actor*
* Declined to be interviewed, citing mime protocol (and the terms of his appearance). He was one of six representing the Where’s Waldo? series at the festival—the other five being paper cutouts tucked around Columbus Park.


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