Books By The Banks (BBTB) 2023




Books By The Banks (BBTB) 2023

Books By The Banks (BBTB) is a non-profit organization that creates opportunities for authors and readers to connect. The organization’s flagship event is its annual book festival in Cincinnati. 

The 2023 BBTB Festival is scheduled for November 18, 2023, From 10AM to 4PM.

Founded in 2009 by a group of authors, BBTB aims to foster a community where readers can meet and interact with their favorite writers. Over time, the organization has grown to include more than 1,000 members, and their book festival is now one of the largest in the United States.

The upcoming 2023 BBTB Festival will showcase more than 100 authors, featuring both established and emerging writers. The festival will also offer panel discussions, workshops, readings, and other events.

Some of the confirmed authors for the 2023 BBTB Festival include:


  • Scott Burson and Sam Smathers – “From Bulldog to Bengal: The Joe Burrow Story Through the Eyes of His Hometown”
  • Richard F. Celeste – “In the Heart of It All: An Unvarnished Account of My Life in Public Service”
  • Mark Dawidziak – “A Mystery of Mysteries: The Death and Life of Edgar Allan Poe”
  • Melvin Grier and Molly Kavanaugh – “It Was Always About The Work: A Photojournalists Memoir”
  • Cardale Jones – “Cardale Jones: Leading the Buckeyes, Finding My Purpose, and Never Giving Up”
  • Adam Lazarus – “The Wingmen: The Unlikely, Unusual, Unbreakable Friendship between John Glenn and Ted Williams”
  • Kim Wickens – “Lexington: The Extraordinary Life and Turbulent Times of America’s Legendary Racehorse”


  • Chris Bachelder and Jennifer Habel – “Dayswork”
  • Melissa Baron – “Twice in a Lifetime”
  • David Bell – “Try Not to Breathe”
  • Matt Betts – “Gone Where the Goblins Go”
  • Brandon Ying Kit Boey – “Karma of the Sun”
  • Phyllis Dixon – “Intermission”
  • Erin Flanagan – “Come With Me”
  • Patti Flinn – “Véronique’s Moon”
  • Sara Herchenroether – “The Night Flowers”
  • Katherine Howe – “A True Account: Hannah Masury’s Sojourn Amongst the Pyrates, Written by Herself”
  • Lynne Hugo – “The Language of Kin”
  • RJ Jacobs – “This Is How We End Things”
  • Emily Jane – “On Earth as it Is on Television”
  • Linda Kass – “Bessie: A Novel”
  • Katrina Kittle – “Morning in This Broken World”
  • Andy Mozina – “Tandem”
  • Sarah Penner – “The London Séance Society”
  • Beth Pugh – “The Santa Run”
  • Sherry Robinson – “Echo Her Lovely Bones”
  • Meg Shaffer – “The Wishing Game”
  • Jessica Strawser – “The Last Caretaker”
  • Thao Thai – “Banyan Moon”
  • Kerry Winfrey – “Faking Christmas”

Graphic Novel

  • Rachel Elliott – “The Real Riley Mayes”
  • Joe Sutphin – “Watership Down: The Graphic Novel”
  • Misty Wilson and David Wilson – “Play Like A Girl”

Juvenile Nonfiction

  • Rebecca E.F. Barone – “Unbreakable: The Spies Who Cracked the Nazis’ Secret Code”
  • Emma Carlson Berne – “Rose Spoke Out: The Story of Rose Schneiderman”
  • Mary Kay Carson – “Tree, Wildflower, and Mushroom Spotting: The Definitive Interactive Nature Guide”
  • Denise Kiernan – “We Gather Together (Young Readers Edition)”
  • Shawn Pryor – “Fighting for Freedom Along the Underground Railroad: An Interactive Look at History (You Choose: Seeking History)”
  • Shannon Stocker – “Listen: How Evelyn Glennie, A Deaf Girl, Changed Percussion”
  • Tammy Wynn and Joel Altman – “Gaining Wings: When a Pet Crosses Over the Rainbow Bridge”

Local Interest

  • Brent Coleman – “Cincinnati Characters: The Unknown, Unappreciated, and Unhinged”
  • Micha O’Connor – “What’s WIth Cincinnati”
  • CF Payne – “Cincinnati Characters: The Unknown, Unappreciated, and Unhinged”
  • Rick Pender – “100 Things to Do in Cincinnati Before You Die, 3rd edition”
  • Robert Schrage – “A History Lover’s Guide to Cincinnati”
  • Jeff Suess and Rick Pender – “The Cincinnati Bengals: An Illustrated Timeline”
  • Kathryn Witt – “Cincinnati Scavenger: The Ultimate Search for Cincinnati’s Hidden Treasures”

Middle Grade

  • Jenn Bishop – “Free Throws, Friendship, and Other Things We Fouled Up”
  • JaNay Brown-Wood – “Recipe For Success (Love Puppies #4)”
  • Olivia Cole – “Where the Lockwood Grows”
  • Carey Corp – “All is Found: A Frozen Anthology”
  • P. Djéli Clark – “Abeni’s Song”
  • Stephanie Faris – “The Ghost at the Inn”
  • John Kachuba – “Haycorn Smith and the Castle Ghost”
  • Lorie Langdon – “All is Found: A Frozen Anthology”
  • Elisa Stone Leahy – “Tethered To Other Stars”
  • Jeff Miller – “Rare Birds”
  • Wes Molebash – “Travis Daventhorpe for the Win!”
  • Natalie D. Richards – “15 Secrets to Survival”
  • Erik Slangerup – “Molly and the Mutants”
  • Brandon T. Snider – “Rube Goldberg and his Amazing Machines: Engine of Change”


  • Ellery Adams – “Paper Cuts”
  • Valerie Burns – “Murder is a Piece of Cake”
  • Elle Cosimano – “Finlay Donovan Jumps the Gun”
  • Susan Furlong – “The Killer’s Wife”
  • Olivia Matthews – “Against the Currant”
  • Rock Neelly – “The Big Jangle: More Case Files From the Purple Heart Detective Agency”
  • Adam Shaffer – “Feel the Bern: A Bernie Sanders Mystery”
  • Andrew Welsh-Huggins – “The End of the Road”


  • Holly Brians Ragusa – “Met the End”
  • Peter Bronson – “Not in Our Town: The Queen City vs. The King of Smut”
  • Tameka N. Ellington – “Black Hair in a White World”
  • Michael Harriot – “Black AF History: The Un-Whitewashed Story of America”
  • Greggor Mattson – “Who Needs Gay Bars? Bar-Hopping through America’s Endangered LGBTQ+ Places”
  • Julie O’Neill – “Bold: The Secret to My Big Wins to Help You Crash Through Your Comfort Zone”
  • David Pepper – “Saving Democracy: A User’s Manual for Every American”
  • Jillian Scudder – “The Milky Way Smells of Rum & Raspberries”
  • Hal Sundt – “Warplane: How the Military Reformers Birthed the A-10 Warthog”
  • Annie Zaleski – “This Is Christmas, Song by Song: The Stories Behind 100 Holiday Hits”

Picture Book

  • Tadgh Bentley – “One Chicken Nugget”
  • Richard Cowdrey – “You’ve Got This Fiona”
  • Christina Dendy – “Hide and Shh! A Not-So-Sneaky Sister Story About Inclusion”
  • Connie Dow – “Tap and Rap, Move and Groove”
  • Jeffrey Ebbeler – “Ten Dragon Eggs (A Book About Counting Down)”
  • Laura Gehl – “Who Made This Mess?”
  • Jacob Grant – “No Fair!”
  • Will Hillenbrand – “The Voice in the Hollow”
  • Bridget Hodder – “The Promise”
  • Michelle Houts – “Hopefully the Scarecrow”
  • Vicki Johnson – “Molly’s Tuxedo”
  • Samuel Narh – “Milko”
  • Merrill Rainey – “Giants Are Very Brave People”
  • Annie Ruth – “I Am Enough”
  • Rebecca Sheir – “The Lion’s Whisker”
  • Chris Sickels – “BUILD!”
  • Mary Reaves Uhles – “Counting on Naamah”
  • Marie Weller and Paula Vertikoff – “Cranium Critters: Einstein Acts When Squirrels Distract”


  • Carolyn Grace – “Grenadine and Other Love Affairs”
  • Rebecca Griswold – “The Attic Bedroom”
  • Roberta Schultz – “Asking Price”


  • Jennifer Alvarez – “Friends Like These”
  • Mindee Arnett – “Riven”
  • David Arnold – “I Loved You in Another Life”
  • Kristy Boyce – “Hot Dutch Daydream”
  • Jiordan Castle – “Disappearing Act”
  • Cinda Williams Chima – “Children of Ragnarok”
  • Olivia Cole – “Dear Medusa”
  • M Hendrix – “The Chaperone”
  • Kaitlyn Hill – “Not Here to Stay Friends”
  • Jason June – “The Spells We Cast”
  • Elizabeth Kilcoyne – “Wake the Bones”
  • Melissa Landers – “Make Me a Liar”
  • Suzanne Lenoir – “A Talent Within”
  • Lizzy Mason – “Remind Me to Hate You Later”
  • Mindy McGinnis – “A Long Stretch of Bad Days”
  • Luma Mufleh – “From Here”
  • Christen Randall – “The No-Girlfriend Rule”
  • Scott Reintgen – “A Door in the Dark”
  • Natalie D. Richards – “Four Found Dead”
  • Kristen Simmons – “Find Him Where You Left Him Dead”
  • Vesper Stamper – “Berliners”
  • Julian Vaca – “The Recall Paradox”
  • Brieanna Wilkoff – “I’ll Be There for You”

True Crime

  • Keven McQueen – “Creepy Kentucky”
  • James Renner – “Little, Crazy Children”

The 2023 BBTB Festival is free to attend and open to the public. To learn more about the event

Books by the Banks 2023 Headliners!

  • Sarah Penner
  • P. Djeli Clark
  • Elle Cosimano
  • Michael Harriot
  • Thao Thai
  • Jason June
  • Richard Cowdrey
  • Will Hillenbrand
  • JaNay Brown-Wood
Books By The Banks (BBTB) 2023

Source: Books By The Banks

2023 Author Panel Schedule

Don’t miss the opportunity to hear from your favorite authors as they discuss their work, the creative process, and more in enjoyable and informative panel discussions. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. You can also visit the Author Pavilion to meet all of our authors.

*10:30 AM

Real Life Reads for Young Readers

Rebecca E.F. Barone, Denise Kiernan, Shawn Pryor, Shannon Stocker

Room 210

Worth a Thousand Words: Picture Books that Inspire

Vicki Johnson, Samuel Narh, Annie Ruth, Chris Sickels (Red Nose Studio)

Room 211

Mystery Fiction

Ellery Adams, Valerie Burns, RJ Jacobs, Andrew Welsh-Huggins

Rooms 212

*11:30 AM

Author Spotlight

Michael Harriot

Room 210

Fiction for Young Readers

JaNay Brown-Wood, P. Djeli Clark, Rachel Elliott, Jeff Miller

Room 211

Author Spotlight

Sarah Penner

Room 212

*12:30 PM

A Life Lived, A Story to Tell: Memoirs

Richard F. Celeste, Melvin Grier, Cardale Jones, Kim Wickens

Room 210

Local Interest Panel

Micha O’Connor, Rick Pender, Robert Schrage, Jeff Suess

Room 211

Buzzworthy Fiction

Brandon Ying Kit Boey, Katherine Howe, Meg Shaffer, Thao Thai

Room 212

*1:30 PM

Author Spotlight

Luma Mufleh

Room 210

Teen Fiction Panel

David Arnold, Olivia Cole, Scott Reintgen, Vesper Stamper

Room 211

Author Spotlight

Elle Cosimano

Room 212

*2:30 PM

Speculative Fiction Panel

Matt Betts, P. Djeli Clark, Emily Jane, Elizabeth Kilcoyne

Room 210

Author Spotlight

Jason June

Room 211

Book Club Picks

Phyllis Dixon, Sara Herchenroether, Katrina Kittle, Jessica Strawser

Room 212

Author Stage Talks – Room 206

11:00 AM – The Wingmen: The Unlikely, Unusual, Unbreakable Friendship Between John Glenn and Ted Williams – Adam Lazarus

11:30 AM – From Bulldog to Bengal: The Joe Burrow Story Through the Eyes of His Hometown – Scott Burson & Sam Smathers

12:00 PM – Bold: The Secret to My Big Wins to Help You Crash Through Your Comfort Zone – Julie O’Neill

12:30 PM – Little, Crazy Children: A True Crime Tragedy of Lost Innocence – James Renner

1:00 PM – Warplane: How the Military Reformers Birthed the A-10 Warthog – Hal Sundt

1:30 PM – The Milky Way Smells of Rum & Raspberries…And Other Amazing Cosmic Facts – Jillian Scudder

2:00 PM – Not in Our Town: The Queen City vs. The King of Smut – Peter Bronson

2:30 PM – This is Christmas, Song by Song: The Stories Behind 100 Holiday Hits – Annie Zaleski

3:00 PM – Saving Democracy: A User’s Manual for Every American – David Pepper

Teen Scene is back and better than ever!

This year’s Books by the Banks Book Festival will be held on November 18th from 10 am to 4 pm. Teen Scene will feature Cosplay.

Come and be a part of the Teen Scene where you can unleash your creativity and design your own cosplay pieces such as tattoo sleeves, unicorn headbands, Yoda ears or anything else that you fancy. Get a chance to meet your beloved cosplay characters and take photos with them. Enhance your cosplay look by visiting the face painting station. Additionally, you can also play games with your favorite teen and tween authors.

Join in Room 232 for some fun and games with the following authors

Wink Murder

10:00-10:45 AM

  • Jennifer Alvarez
  • David Arnold
  • Olivia Cole
  • Christen Randall
  • Kristen Simmons

Who Am I?

2:00-2:45 PM

  • Mindee Arnett
  • Kristy Boyce
  • Carey Corp
  • M Hendrix
  • Kaitlynn Hill
  • Lorie Langdon
  • Brieanna Wilkoff

Kids Corner

Books by the Banks is inviting all superheroes to attend this year’s festival on November 18th from 10 am to 4 pm. According to one of their sources, this year’s Kids’ Corner will be the biggest and best ever, so be ready for some surprises and special guests. 

Take the opportunity to meet amazing children’s authors and illustrators who will be attending the festival, and participate in all the free activities that will make you feel super-powered to read more books!

Kids’ Corner Schedule

11:00Jacob GrantStorytime
12:00Will HillenbrandDrawing Demo
1:00Tadgh BentleyStorytime
2:00JaNay Brown-WoodStorytime
3:00Connie DowDance Party

Writing and Getting Published Panels

11:00 AM
Small Publishers
Sarah Hawley/Orange Frazer Press, Kim Jacobs-Beck/Milk & Cake Press, Lisa Ampleman/Acre Books
Room 207
Raising Readers & Writers
J. Postell/Junior Authors,
Gabrielle Walker/2023-2024 Youth Poet Laureate of Cincinnati
Room 208
12:00 PM
David & Misty Wilson; Jennifer Habel & Chris Bachelder; Brent Coleman & C.F. Payne
Room 207
Writing Workshop
Ashley Ferguson
Annette J. Wick
Room 208
1:00 PM
Research for Writing
Tameka N. Ellington, Greg Hand, Alan March
Room 207
Carolyn Grace, Rebecca Griswold, Roberta Schultz
Room 208
2:00 PM
Writing Contest Announcements
Room 207

Visitor’s Information

Are you ready to wallow in your love for books? We are excited to join you in celebrating the joys of reading and writing! As the festival approaches, we will keep this page updated with essential details to ensure that you have the best possible experience.


The Books By The Banks festival is scheduled for November 18, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Duke Energy Convention Center.


The Duke Energy Convention Center is located at 525 Elm St, Cincinnati, OH 45202. You can check the interactive Google Map and driving directions to reach the venue.


The main entrance of the Duke Energy Convention Center is located at the intersection of Fifth Street and Elm Street in downtown Cincinnati. 

There are over 5,000 parking spaces available in metered street spaces, private flat lots and privately managed garages, surrounding the center. 

The garages have a direct entry to the convention center via Cincinnati’s Skywalk System.


The Books By The Banks festival has a variety of books available for sale. Each author has their latest release on the table, with some also offering previous titles. The book sales help fund the festival and support an excellent selection of authors visiting the Cincinnati region year after year. You can buy a book for yourself or even get some holiday shopping done.

While you are allowed to bring your own books to the festival, we strongly recommend that you browse the more than 150 titles available for sale.


Most authors are present at the festival for the entire day, however, some have limited appearances. A list of confirmed authors has been given above.

Code of Conduct 

All attendees and participants must adhere to the Books by the Banks Code of Conduct.

Lost and Found 

The Lost and Found is located at the Welcome/FAQ table on the second floor, near the North Escalators.

Plan Your Visit 

Make the most of your time at the Books By The Banks festival by planning a day, night, or weekend! Check out the resources provided below to help you plan your visit beyond Books by the Banks.

Where To Stay

When it comes to finding a place to stay in Cincinnati, there are some great options available. 

You can choose to stay at the Cincinnatian Hotel located at 601 Vine Street, which is the oldest hotel in Downtown Cincinnati built in 1883. 

If you’re looking for a hotel close to the Duke Energy Convention Center, then the Hyatt Regency Cincinnati on West 5th Street is a great option. 

The Westin Hotel located on 5th Street is another option that provides a smoke-free environment and features an indoor swimming pool for relaxation or exercise. 

The Hilton Netherland Plaza, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, is known for its stunning Art Deco interior. You can enjoy both casual and fine dining options here.

Places To Visit

If you’re visiting Cincinnati, there are several places that you must visit. 

One of them is the Aronoff Center for the Arts located at 650 Walnut Street, which boasts three performance spaces: Procter & Gamble Hall, Jarson-Kaplan Theater, and the Fifth Third Bank Theater. 

Another popular destination is the Cincinnati Art Museum in Eden Park, which houses an art collection of more than 67,000 works spanning 6,000 years. You can also find several national and international traveling exhibitions here. 

The Cincinnati Museum Center, which is housed in the landmark Union Terminal, is a collection of three separate museums, including The Children’s Museum, and an Omnimax theater.You can take Cincinnati Metro Bus #1 to reach the Museum Center. 

The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is another must-visit destination that is home to the world-famous hippo Fiona and is committed to inspiring visitors with wildlife and saving species.

The Contemporary Arts Center and the Aronoff Center are the heart of the Cincinnati Arts Community. 

Findlay Market, located at 1801 Race Street in Over-the-Rhine, is Ohio’s oldest continuously operated public market. 

The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, located on the banks of the Ohio River, educates the public about the struggle to abolish slavery and showcases the efforts of modern-day heroes from around the world. 

Newport Aquarium, which is part of the Newport on the Levee complex, was named the No. 1 aquarium in the Midwest by the Zagat Survey’s U.S. Family Travel Guide in 2004. It also has a new Shark Central exhibit. 

Newport on the Levee is a unique shopping, dining, and entertainment complex located just across the Ohio River in Kentucky. You can walk across the Purple People Bridge or take one of the Southbank Shuttle buses to get to Newport on the Levee from downtown. 

The Taft Museum of Art is another destination that you shouldn’t miss. Built in about 1820 and considered one of the finest examples of Federal architecture in the country, this National Historic Landmark is one of America’s finest small art museums.

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