In anticipation of the upcoming Malta Book Festival, the National Book Council is releasing the programme for the Festival both to inform members of the public of the events that have been prepared for them and as a guide for visitors. Press this link here to download a copy: mbf-2016-programme-eng

One of the highlights of this year’s festival is no doubt an evening dedicated to poetess Maria Grech Ganado, the winner of last year’s Lifetime Achievement award. There will be selected reading of her poems, an interview with the poetess conducted by Prof Charles Calleja, and plenty of opportunity for members of the audience to meet the poetess and ask her questions, express admiration, have books signed, etc. This will take place on Friday evening which is an evening packed with poetry events – Horizons will present a Celebration of Poetry featuring work by some of Malta’s best-loved poets, while  in another event organised by the NBC, in collaboration with the Maltese Poets Association, there will be selected readings of poetry and the winners of the 2016 Mons. Amante Bountempo Poetry contest will be announced.

Foreign language literature will be well-represented by the stand of the Italian Cultural Institute, which will host several Sicilian Publishers as well as book presentations and discussions with the authors; the stand curated by the French Embassy in Malta as well as events organised in conjunction with the Spanish Department at the University of Malta as well as the Spanish Embassy, namely a conference on Cervantes, commemorating the 400th anniversary of the great author’s death and presenting  DUN KIXOTT MILL-MANĊA (SKS), the Maltese translation of Don Quixote in poetic form by Pawlu Montebello. Moreover MBF2016 will also host the book launch of Malta Ħanina (Faraxa Publishing), the Maltese translation of French author Daniel Rondeau’s work, in which both translator Toni Aquilina and the author will be present.

It is impossible to list all the highlights in this press release but one cannot possibly omit mentioning two very important conferences. The first one will open the festival on Wednesday 9th and is titled Literature and Totalitarianism. Journalist Jurgen Balzan will chair over a discussion on language, literature and totalitarianism, in which four special guests – Bulgarian Alek Popov, author of Mission:London and The Black Box, British academic, poet and author Prof. Patrick McGuinness, Egyptian novelist and human rights activist Basma Abdel Aziz and Maltese poet and writer Immanuel Mifsud will participate.

The second one is a one-day conference on Books and Literacy: yesterday, today and tomorrow and is the collaborative effort of the NBC, the Department of Library and Archive Sciences at UOM and Malta Libraries. The discussion will explore the traditional relationship between books and literacy in the light of the evolution of publishing.

As a special treat for visitors to the festival this year, Kotba Calleja will set up an exhibition ‘…et cetera’ on the subject of the art of the book and book-binding. Besides the exhibits, all of which are local examples of the art, there will be discussions, demonstrations and a workshop.

All the foreign authors participating in the Literature and Totalitarianism conference will have a separate event in which they will present their work, engage in an interview on their life and work and answer questions from the public.

In addition to all of this, almost all the stands of local publishers and book distributors -notably, the Merlin Publishers stand, the Faraxa Publishers stand, the BDL Books stand – will host plenty of activities both for adults and children, ensuring an immensely varied and educational programme of events that caters for all book-lovers’ interests.

For more info about the Festival five-day cultural programme of events follow our MBF2016 Facebook Event page:


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