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Visiting Authors Series

Every year, thousands of book lovers come together at the Center to explore writings, hear author’s takes on their work, and interact with celebrated authors in a variety of forums. Our events include author meet-and-greets, book signings, a community read, panel discussions, children and teen’s activities, and more. Check below for information on this year's authors.

Book Fair Cabaret-Style Performance with Alexandra Silber

After playing the role of Tzeitel in the most recent Broadway revival of Fiddler on the Roof, and previously playing Hodel in London’s West End, Alexandra Silber has written a book about what happens after Hodel leaves the stage. The result is After Anatevka, a sweeping historical novel that continues the story that has captivated fans around the globe for decades.

In a special hybrid of reading and performance – combining excerpts from the book with a curated song list – Alexandra addresses the cultural meaning of Fiddler on the Roof, her own personal connection with the show, and the process of writing her remarkable new novel. Alexandra, with her accompanist on piano, will present a fully dramatized mini piece of theatre.

In addition to the stage, Alexandra has appeared on television and film, and in concert, including Carnegie Hall. She received a Grammy nomination for her portrayal of Maria in the recording of West Side Story with the San Francisco Symphony.

Book Fair Opening Night Post-Reception Sponsored by Claudia and Steve Biegler

Book Fair Event with Allan H. Goodman

Allan H. Goodman's intriguing blend of history and mystery, Father, Son, Stone, delves into the secret of Jerusalem's most controversial religious site: the Temple Mount, also known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary. Inspired by Goodman's desire to learn why Moshe Dayan returned the Temple Mount to the Muslim authority at the end of the Six-Day War in 1967, the book spans various periods in the history of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, while engaging the reader in a page-turning tale that includes personal loss, religious and legal conflict, political ambition, and long-hidden family secrets.

Goodman is a judge, mediator, arbitrator and educator and has written two best-selling non-fiction books. He lived in Israel for two summers during college, working on kibbutzim and studying Hebrew. He majored in International Affairs at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, where his studies included Islamic History, Middle East Politics and Diplomacy, and Arabic. He also earned a law degree from the University of Toledo College of Law, and was in private practice before becoming a judge.

Co-hosted by the Jewish Women's Club

Book Fair Event with B.A. Shapiro

B.A. Shapiro, whose previous books have sold over half a million copies, once again weaves together historical and imagined characters to create a psychological art thriller, this time set in 1920s Paris and Philadelphia, where one fascinating woman must disguise her identity in order to reclaim it. It’s the summer of 1922, and nineteen-year-old Paulien Mertens finds herself in Paris—broke, disowned, and completely alone. Everyone in Belgium, including her own family, believes she stole millions in a sophisticated con game perpetrated by her then-fiancé, George Everard. To protect herself from the law and the wrath of those who lost everything, she creates a new identity and sets out to recover her father’s art collection, prove her innocence—and exact revenge on George. Shapiro is the author of seven novels, including the award-winning NY Times bestseller, The Art Forger and national bestseller The Muralist.

Book Fair Event with Rabbi Royi Shaffin

In his new book, The Hollywood Bible, Rabbi Royi Shaffin finds Jewish meanings and symbolism in movies from Wonder Woman and E.T. to post WWII classics such as The Creature from the Black Lagoon and uses them as a way to teach deep truths about spirituality and Judaism.

Rabbi Royi Shaffin was named by The Forward as one of America’s Most Inspiring Rabbis. He was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York and has served as congregational rabbi, an educator, a school principal, and a college professor. He has also continued performing in community theaters and serving as a Judaic advisor for plays that include Jewish themes. Rabbi Shaffin has written an entry in To Honor A Teacher, by Jeffrey Spoden and has published articles in The Jewish State, El Diario, and City Beat Magazine.

Book Fair Event with Andrew Gross

Andrew Gross’ newest historical thriller brings to life the drama of the birth of organized crime in 1930’s New York City from the tale of one family. Set between 1905-1935 and a rags-to-riches tale like Dickens’ Great Expectations merged with The Godfather, Button Man traces the rise of a Jewish immigrant family in the dawn of the women’s garment business collapse under the hammer of organized crime. It draws in the real life crime figures of Lepke, Dutch Schultz and Albert Anastasia of the feared Murder, Incorporated, as well as Special Prosecutor Thomas Dewey, pitting brother against brother. Both tragic, and yet like the story of so many of that generation who brought themselves up from nothing, inspirational.

Gross is the author of the NY Times and international bestsellers Everything to Lose, No Way Back, 15 Seconds, Eyes Wide Open, Reckless, Don’t Look Back, The Dark Tide, and The Blue Zone. He is also the co-author of five Number 1 bestsellers with James Patterson, including Judge and Jury and Lifeguard.

Book Fair Community Read Event with Georgia Hunter

When Georgia Hunter was fifteen years old, she learned that she came from a family of Holocaust survivors. Her New York Times Best Seller We Were the Lucky Ones was born of her quest to uncover her family's staggering history. It's a searing story of a Jewish family ripped away from each other at the start of the German and Russian occupation of Poland on the eve of World War II, and their extraordinary journey back to each other. Hunter's website,, offers a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the extensive research this project has entailed.

“[A] must-read.”—New York Post

  “A remarkable story of courage, love, and of course, luck.” —Book Riot’s Best Books of 2017

Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for Historical  Fiction and Debut Goodreads Author Costco Book Pick


We Were the Lucky Ones is available for purchase at the Weinstein JCC Central Services Desk (M-F 8:30AM-5:00PM) for $16. There is a $3 discount for Patrons of the Arts subscribers and for those who purchase along with admission to the event by November 8. 


Presented in collaboration with Hadassah Richmond

Book Fair Family Event - Curious George

Written by Anthony Pererya | 90 minutes | Rated G

German Jews Margret and H.A. Rey created Curious George, the little monkey who’s been entertaining children since the first book was published in 1941, shortly after they escaped the Nazi invasion of Paris. This animated film is a fun-filled big-city journey about how George meets the Man in the Yellow Hat. Kids of all ages are invited to join the fun with breakfast, arts &crafts, and a movie. Includes a visit by the characters and pajamas and pillows are welcome!