Giller winner Souvankham Thammavongsa comes to this year's Afterwords Festival.

Afterwords Festival keeps it lit(-erary)

The celebration of books and those who read them returns Sep 28-Oct 3.

If you ask us, the annual Afterwords Literary Festival is the event manifestation of your coolest book-loving pal. You can trust its curated calendar of events to get you up-to-date on the buzziest books and on-the-rise authors, both locally and internationally. The fact that its 2021 lineup is 100 percent online only fortifies the feeling that it loves you back juuuust as much. And while the entire fest—held from Sep 28-Oct 3—looks lit, here are some of the events we’re most excited for.

Former Halifax Poet Laureate Rebecca Thomas debuts a new poem as part of a star-studded talk taking place on Truth and Reconciliation Day (Sep 30). The poem was specially commissioned by the festival, and will be presented before Governor General Award-winning, bestselling author Katherena Vermette talks about her new book, The Strangers, with decorated poet Janet Rogers.
Thu Sep 30, 7pm-8:15pm, free, livestream details here.

If Souvankham Thammavongsa is a name you don't know yet, allow Afterwords to change that: The author of four volumes of poetry and the 2020 Giller Prize-winning short story collection How To Pronounce Knife is more than deserving of some space on your bookshelf—and this conversation with Somali writer and poet Oubah Osman will convince you if, somehow, some way, you still have doubts.
Fri Oct 1, 8:30pm, $8, livestream details here.

The Giller-longlisted Francesca Ekwuyasi provides one of the best conjurings of Halifax in recent years in her 2020 chapbook Butter Honey Pig Bread—and it's not just us who think so: The New Yorker, The Globe and Mail and Quill and Quire all made note of the debut novel. Tune into this livestream to see Ekwuyasi in conversation with Halifax Fringe's director, Lee-Anne Poole.
Sun Oct 3, noon, $5, livestream details here.

Avni Doshi's Booker-nominated debut Burnt Sugar lives up to its name, delving into the addictive-but-scarred relationship between an aging, ailing mother and her daughter. Afterwords sees Doshi discussing deep commonalities with Motherhood author Sheila Heti (the fest describes Heti's book as "a funny, genre-bending, almost-forensic meditation on her decision not to have a child").
Sun Oct 3, 1-2:30pm, $8, livestream details here.

About The Author

Morgan Mullin

Morgan is the Arts & Entertainment Editor at The Coast, where she writes about everything from what to see and do around Halifax to profiles of the city’s creative class to larger cultural pieces. She’s been with The Coast since 2016.

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