Jonathan Hampshire, 6, just finished kindergarten in Columbia, and he can quickly list a dozen or so books he has read.
His favorites are on par for his age–Batman, Spider-Man and Superman–so he was in good company with those at this year's Bookapalooza who have moved onto greener pastures and longer chapters.
Hampshire didn't just have books on the brain though, and he said he came for "face painting and the authors and...playing."
Play they did, with more than 200 people who showed up for the reading celebration at the Howard County Public Library Central Branch in Columbia.
Fans listened to authors speak about the inspirations behind some of the most popular books for children and adolescents, including Katherine Paterson, author of Bridge to Terabithia.
"Books for children should have at their core this quality of 'Wow,' that is a sense of wonder," Paterson said. "All the books [I loved as a child] have wonder at their core. If I want to write books worthy of my child readers, my whole life should be one long quest in search of wonder."
Paterson has written more than 35 books in her career, earning her two Newbery Medals and the honor of vice president for the National Children's Book and Literacy Alliance.
Want to read more about summer reading? Check out Patch's Summer Reading Guide.