Jewish Book and Arts Fair
Jonathan Alter & 30 authors highlight Jewish Book and Arts Fair
The 38th annual Houston Jewish Book and Arts Fair kicks off Sunday at the Jewish Community Center with Newsweek columnist Jonathan Alter, who has written a book about President Obama's rocky first year, and ends Nov. 14 with NBC news correspondent Martin Fletcher, who recounts his 100-mile walk along the coastline from Lebanon to Gaza in Walking Israel: A Personal Search for the Soul of a Nation.
The fair features a line-up of 31 authors, four independent films and two concerts. Highlights include a special Family Day on Nov. 7 and a European Eats and Beer Sampling for young adults on Wednesday, Nov. 3. Over 5,000 people attend the book fair each year, and it is one of the largest Jewish Book Fairs in the country.
Here are five events I don't plan to miss:
- Opening night brings a free lecture by Alter, author of The Promise: President Obama, Year One. Alter is aNewsweek Senior Editor, and the author of its popular “Conventional Wisdom Watch.” He shares Obama’s stories from the campaign trail through inauguration and inner workings of passing the healthcare reform bill. What distinguishes this book from many others about Obama’s campaign and first year in office is Alter’s access to the inner circle. Sunday, 7:30 p.m.
- Everything is Going to be Great: An Underfunded, Overexposed European Grand Tour is the true story of Rachel Shukert, a recent New York University graduate, who goes to Europe for an acting job and ends up alone because of a customs fluke in Austria. Alone and with little cash, she travels through Europe in an effort to see what she’s made of and challenge herself in the real world. Wednesday, 7:15 p.m.; the lecture is for people ages 21-35.
- Dani Shapiro’s second book, Devotion: A Memoir, takes the reader through her spiritual journey to understand tough questions about life and death. She consults a yogi, Buddhist, and Rabbi to understand answers and relay the knowledge to her son. This book was an O, The Oprah Magazine book pick. Nov. 7, 4:30 p.m.
- Israeli journalist Tom Segev writes the first biography of Simon Wiesenthal, a Nazi hunter who sought punishment for Nazi criminals after World War II. In Simon Wiesenthal The Life and Legends,Segev used archived letters and private records to show new facts, unlikely friendships, and the reason for the rivalry with Elie Wiesel. Nov. 9, 8 p.m..
- A Jewish Bible scholar and African-American Christian pastor go to Israel together to uncover the roots of The Lord’s Prayer, a sacred scripture for both religions. Nehemia Gordon and Keith Johnson started in Jerusalem and traveled around uncovering new ways to understand this prayer, resulting in their book, A Prayer to our Father. Nov. 10, 8 p.m.
Admission to all lectures require a ticket. Prices range from free to $14, and series passes or senior discount rates are available too. For a full schedule of events and to purchase tickets, visit the Jewish Community Center website here.