New Jewish Book Fair focuses on events 

By: Maddie Forshee | West Bloomfield Beacon | Published November 6, 2017

 Volunteers for the Jewish Community Center helped set up during the week of Nov. 2. The Jewish Book Fair is held at the JCC in West Bloomfield and runs Nov. 2-12.

Volunteers for the Jewish Community Center helped set up during the week of Nov. 2. The Jewish Book Fair is held at the JCC in West Bloomfield and runs Nov. 2-12.

Photo provided by Sari Cicurel

 The Jewish Book Fair fills the halls of the Jewish Community Center in West Bloomfield. The book fair hosts local and national Jewish authors with talks, lunches and other events throughout its run.

The Jewish Book Fair fills the halls of the Jewish Community Center in West Bloomfield. The book fair hosts local and national Jewish authors with talks, lunches and other events throughout its run.

Photo provided by Sari Cicurel

WEST BLOOMFIELD — The Jewish Book Fair is back for its 66th year in West Bloomfield, and this year will be a different experience. 

Actually, it will be all about the experience. 

“It’s an experience to come hear these authors and see their books,” said Terry Hollander, book fair chair. “To just see the best of the best. There’s something for everyone.”

The book fair has changed this year in respect to the events hosted during the fair. 

Wren Hack, book fair director for the Jewish Community Center of Metropolitan Detroit, the organization hosting the book fair, said the focus is on the events themselves, so many of the author events are free. The only events guests will have to pay for are the ones serving lunch or dinner. 

“We’re focusing more on the experience rather than the book sale,” said Hack. “Bookstores are no longer bookstores, so we’re doing the same. We have food available; places to sit, enjoy; and places to hear incredible speakers.”

The book fair will be held Nov. 2-12. 

“The celebration is that we get to do another year,” said Hack. “We’re bringing Jewish authors from around the country during the 10 days of the book fair and bring them to the community.” 

The book fair is hosted at the JCC in West Bloomfield. The event organizers expect thousands of visitors over the course of the fair. Over 4,500 books are ready to be perused by visitors, said Hollander. 

“We’ve been doing this since 1951,” she said. “Even though things have changed, the way we see authors and get together as a community, that hasn’t changed.” 

Hundreds of volunteers help the event run smoothly, said Hollander.

Every year, volunteers travel to New York to see authors speak, while other volunteers take on the reading and suggest their favorite authors and books.

The book fair opens with Jeff Rossen, author of “Rossen to the Rescue.” Rossen is a journalist with NBC’s “Today” show, and his book dives into the more personal anecdotes that he doesn’t tell on TV. The book gives tips and game plans for handling any situation life throws at the reader. 

The book fair will host Patron Night on Tuesday, Nov. 7, with a dinner and an author talk with Nathan Englander, author of “Dinner at the Center of the Earth,” a political thriller about the Middle East. 

On Thursday, Nov. 9, the book fair will host Kristallnacht Remembrance Day, so the day’s selections of events will all focus on the Holocaust and remembrance. 

On Saturday, Nov. 11, the fair will host Comedy Night featuring Susan Silver, author of “Hot Pants in Hollywood: Sex, Secrets and Sitcoms,” a novel about Silber’s life as one of the first female comedy writers on television; as well as Alan Zweibel, author of “For This We Left Egypt? A Passover Haggadah for Jews and Those Who Love Them,” a book about how to prepare and celebrate Passover without completely going crazy. 

For a complete schedule of the book fair and more information, visit www.jccdet.org/bookfair.