IN COLLABORATION WITH MIAMI JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL: In this beautiful 64-page picture book, Memories of Survival (Art & Remembrance, $15.99), Esther Nisenthal Krinitz tells her story of survival during the Holocaust through her art and narrative. The accompanying text by her daughter, Bernice Steinhardt, adds historical detail, context and interpretation. Told in more than 30 remarkable panels with vivid colors and striking details, Esther's story describes a young girl's harrowing escape from the Nazis to freedom in America. While a beautiful gift for both children and adults, it is also an educational resource for teachers exploring the Holocaust and themes of social justice and tolerance. Meet Esther this evening, through a preview of the award-winning documentary film Through the Eye of the Needle: The Art of Esther Nisenthal Krinitz and a lecture and book signing by Bernice Steinhardt, Esther's daughter and co-author of Memories of Survival. The Miami Jewish Film Festival will host the Florida Premiere of Through the Eye of the Needle the following evening, Thursday, January 31 at 6:30 pm at the Regal Cinema South Beach 18. For information about the screening and tickets: http://miamijewishfilmfestival.org
Amy Wilentz is a tremendously talented and original writer, described by Susan Orlean as having “a sharp eye, a cool wit, and a reporter’s gumption”—all of which are handsomely on display in, Farewell, Fred Voodoo (Simon & Schuster). She writes regularly for The New Yorker and The Nation and has been the recipient of the Whiting Writers Award, the PEN Martha Albrand Non-Fiction Award, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters Rosenthal Award. She teaches in the Literary Journalism program at U.C. Irvine. Like Joan Didion’s Salvador and Rory Stewart’s The Places in Between, Farewell, Fred Voodoo vividly portrays the people of a stark place. Simply put, this is a brilliant writer’s account of a long, painful, ecstatic—and unreciprocated—affair with Haiti, a country that has long fascinated the world. Her book is about magical transformations. It is filled with raucous characters: human-rights reporters gone awry, movie stars turned into aid workers, musicians running for president, doctors turned into diplomats, a former U.S. president working as a house builder, street boys morphing into rock stars, and voodoo priests running elections. Wilentz looks back and forward at the country: at its slave plantations, its unthinkable revolutionary history, its kick-up-the-dirt guerrilla movements, its troubled relationship to the U.S., the totalitarian dynasty that ruled for decades, as well as its creative culture, and its ancient African traditions and attitudes. With Farewell, Fred Voodoo, Wilentz pursues the heart and soul of this beautiful and confounding place.