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Arts & Culture:
21st Annual
JCC Book Festival

Adult Classes
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Arts & Culture
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Book Festival
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The Mandel JCC is proud to present the 21st Annual JCC Book Festival. Over 25 events are presented throughout the year. The Signature Book Festival Luncheon attracts over 300 people at the Kravis Center each November, in honor of Jewish Book Month.

Join the Literary Society, your passport to the Book Festival, for tickets to all Book Festival events throughout the year, a collection of books by the presenting authors, and a special event. The Literary Society is committed to the continued quality of the festival and to strengthening our community through Jewish cultural arts.  


 Literary Society Event 

In Eight Hundred Grapes, Georgia Ford witnesses something she can't quite rectify in her mind. She literally runs from the scene without much of her trademark confrontation and heads straight back to the life she left behind in the rolling hills of Sebastopol at the Last Straw Vineyard owned by her parents. What follows is a series of revelations that continually keep Georgia's world off- kilter-family secrets that threaten to disembowel her very notion of family and relationships and force her to reexamine intricate bonds that perhaps she takes- as we all do- for granted. 

Laura Dave is the international bestselling author of Eight Hundred Grapes, The First Husband, The Divorce Party and London is the Best City in America. Her novels have been published in fifteen countries and three of them, including Eight Hundred Grapes, have been optioned as major motion pictures. 

>Monday, Nov 2; 5:30 PM

  Location: Private Home, Palm Beach Gardens 

  Chair: Shelly Gerson 

 >Click Here For More Information on Laura Dave 

 Book Festival Signature Luncheon 

In The Debt of Tamar, Selim Osman meets Hannah, the daughter of a Holocaust survivor and an artist striving to understand a father she barely knows. Unaware the connection they share goes back centuries, the two feel an immediate pull to one another. But as their story intertwines with that of their ancestors, the heroic, but ultimately tragic decision that bound two families centuries ago ripples into the future, threatening to tear Hannah and Selim apart. 

Nicole Dweck holds a BA in Journalism and a Master's Degree in Global Affairs from NYU. When the Debt of Tamar, her debut novel, was self- published, it was a USA Today bestseller and received honorable mention in Writer's Digest's Self-  Published Book Awards. 

>Wednesday, Nov 11, 11:00 AM

   Locations: Kravis Center, West Palm Beach 

   Co-Chairs: Beryl Schneider & Cynthia Liebman 

>Click Here To Register>>

>Click Here For More Information on Nicole Dweck

 Celebrating Sisterhood 

In The Outskirts of Hope, Ivester uses journals left by her mother, as well as writings of her own, to paint a vivid, moving, and inspiring portrait of her family's experiences living and working in an all-black town during the height of the civil rights movement. 

Jo Ivester spent two years of her childhood living in a trailer in Mound Bayou, where she was the only white student at her junior high. She finished high school in Florida before attending Reed, MIT, and Stanford in preparation for a career in transportation and manufacturing. 

>Wednesday, Dec 9; 10:00 AM 

  Location: Temple Israel, 1901 Flagler Drive, West Palm beach 

  Co- Sponsors: Temple Israel, Temple Beth Am, Temple Beth David, Temple Beth El, Temple Emanu-El, Temple Judea

 Author Event 

As a member of the Skverers, one of the most insular Hasidic sects in the US, Shulem Deen knows little about the outside world- only that it is to be shunned. His marriage at eighteen is arranged and several children soon follow. Deen's first transgression-turning on the radio- is small, but his curiosity leads him to the library, and later the Internet. Soon, he begins a feverish inquiry into the tenets of his religious beliefs, until, several years later, his faith unravels entirely. In All Who Go Do Not Return, Deen bravely traces his harrowing loss of faith, while offering an illuminating look at a highly secretive world. 

Shulem Deen is a former Skverer Hasid, and the founding editor of Unpious. His work has appeared in the Jewish Daily Forward, Tablet, and Salon. 

>Tuesday, Jan 12: 10:00 AM 

   Location: Mandel JCC Boynton Beach 

>Click Here For More Information on Shulem Deen

 Novel Tea

Someday You Will Understand is the story of Walter Wolff, the son of a Jewish merchant family that fled their German home when the Nazis came to power and took refuge in Brussels, Belgium. On the eve of the German invasion, in May 1940, the family began its second escape. Their sixteen-month odyssey took them through the chaos of battle in France and the dangers of living clandestinely as Jews in occupied territory, before they finally boarded the notorious freighter SS Navemar in Cadiz, Spain, to be among the last Jewish refugees admitted to the United States before Pearl Harbor. 

Nina Wolff Feld is the daughter of Walter C. Wolff, who went on to found the Bon Marche furniture stores in New York. A native New  Yorker, she received a B.S. in Fine Art from Pratt Institute School of Architecture. During the 1980's her paintings became a part of East Village and Soho art scene. 

>Tuesday, Jan 12, 2:00 PM 

  Location: Private Home, Palm Beach Gardens 

>Click Here For More Information on Nina Wolff Feld 

 Boynton Book Festival Luncheon 

In Playing with Fire, violinist Julia Ansdell happens upon a curios piece of music the Incendio waltz- and is immensely entranced by its unusual composition. Julia is determined to master the complex work and make its melody heard. Back home in Boston, from the moment Julia's bow moves across the strings, drawing the waltz's fiery notes into the air, something strange is stirred-and Julia's world comes under threat. The music has a terrifying and inexplicable effect on her young daughter, who seems violently transformed. Convinced that the hypnotic strains of Incendio are weaving a malevolent spell, Julia sets out to discover the man and the meaning behind the score. 

Internationally bestselling author Tess Gerritsen has written 3 bestsellers in the United States. Her series of novels featuring homicide detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Maura Isles inspired the TNT television series "Rizzoli & Isles" starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander. 

>Tuesday, Feb 23: 11:00 AM 

   Location: Indian Spring Country Club

   11501 El Clair Ranch Road, Boynton Beach

   Chairperson: Claire Sirof 

>Click Here For More Information on Tess Gerritsen

 Author Event 

The Bus on Jaffa Road is the story of the bombing on Jerusalem's Number 18 bus in 1996. The narrative weaves from the streets of Jerusalem to a West Bank refugee camp to the White House, the Congress and a U.S. courtroom where the victim's families filed a lawsuit against Iran for financing the bombing- then to a prison in the Negev desert in Israel where the author confronts the man who built the bomb on the Jaffa Road bus. It is a story that prefigures many of the difficulties of America's "war on terrorism" and reminds us of the intractable nature of the Israeli- Palestinian conflict that continues to this day. 

Mike Kelly has been a journalist for more than three decades. He is the author of two books as well as numerous prize- winning newspaper projects and columns for the The Bergen Record, a daily newspaper in northern New Jersey. Kelly was named the top columnist in America in 2004 and in 2011 by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. In 2001, the New Jersey Press Association named him "Journalist of the Year" for his reporting from the Middle East and from Ground Zero. 

>Wednesday February 3; 5:30 PM

   Location: Palm Beach Country Club, 760 N Ocean Blvd, Palm Beach 

   Co- Chairs: Zelda Mason, Gwen Boykin Senior Vice President, The Private Client Reserve of U.S. Bank 

   Sponsor: The Private Client Reserve of U.S. Bank

>Click Here For More Information on Mike Kelly

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