The Bookworm Literary Festival has featured authors from nearly 30 countries, from both large (English, Chinese, Spanish) and small (Slovenia, Catalan, Hungarian) language groups. Here’s what some of them have said:

“The Bookworm festival is a wonderful initiative. It proves that boundaries exist only on the ground and in our minds.”

— Yasmina Khadra, author of more than 30 books, including the Algerian trilogy of The Swallows of Kabul, The Attack, and The Sirens of Baghdad

“Despite often operating in a difficult climate, the stores offer not only great food and books but foster a rich intellectual atmosphere, and I have never seen anything like that – and I have traveled the world as an ambassador for literacy and children’s books and so speak from experience.”

— Stephen Mooser, co-founder of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators

“[BLF] shows the rest of the world what a book festival should be about, I hope people are paying attention.”

— Peter Popham, foreign correspondent for The Independent

“I feel as if I’ve truly been somewhere else, and that I have some tiny increment better an understanding of the world.”

— Lionel Shriver, author of the Orange Prize-winning novel We Need to Talk About Kevin

“The Bookworm is a festival and bookstore I’d say a big yes to, most simply stated.”

Chang-rae Lee, Pulitzer nominee, author of Native Speaker and On Such a Full Sea

“In a country like China, it is important to consider the outcomes of the festival that will resonate long after author presentations have concluded. The inspiration that echoes in the minds of the audiences who attended cannot be underestimated.”

Frané Lessac, author of more than 40 children’s books, recipient of the Muriel Barwell Award for Distinguished Service to Children’s Literature

“I loved the range of authors – fiction and non-fiction writers, poets, philosophers from all over the world.”

Mary Costello, author of Academy Street, winner of the Eason’s Novel of the Year Prize at the Bord Gais Awards and named overall Irish Book of the Year 2014

“The Bookworm Literary Festival not only creates a very unique space in China for writers, translators, and intellectuals from all over the world to meet, it also opens a window for Chinese readers to be in touch with different cultures.”

— Dorothy Tse, author of Snow and Shadow

“I had a fabulous time, met fabulous people and was made to feel particularly welcome and like a friend of the festival. It’s a very special set-up you have over there – long may it continue.”

— Keith Gray, author of Creepers, shortlisted for the 1997 Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize

“If a good writers festival is judged by the depth and breadth of its conversation, this has to be one of the best.”

— Jennifer Mills, author of The Diamond AnchorGone, and The Rest is Weight