Posts Tagged ‘Books and books’

Miami Book Fair Spectacular

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008

My god.  What a month for hope.  Latest for me was the Miami Book Fair International where an entire village came alive with written words dancing and singing and shaking hands in downtown Miami.  What a vibrant testament to imagination, the organizers’, the participants’, the visitors’. 

I had the honor of reading with Brad Matsen author of Titanic’s Last Secrets.  It is the story of why the Titanic went down so quickly, what happens when businessmen compromise principles, and the tragedy that can result from a cascade of moral if not legal wrongs.  It is the story of our economy in a bathtub, and it reminded me very much of what I saw as a Washington, DC lawyer:  good people making compromises on small parts of important issues, with the result that bad policies were implemented, and worse. 

Continued thanks go to Mitchell Kaplan, owner of Books and Books and the fair’s pioneer.  Likewise, to Cristina Nosti who saved me more than once from death as a socially awkward sixth grader at his first writers’ dance.

Rest assured the weekend was not without its odd reptilian magic:  Those who attended my Books and Books reading in Miami will remember Alan Rigerman, who stood up and had a number of things to say in defense of Mario Tabraue, Ray Van Nostrand, and others.  I wondered if Alan would be at my reading but it turns out he was in the newspaper.  According to that morning’s Miami Herald, while Alan was attending Repticon, the Florida reptile show,  a 16-year-old girl was mauled at his home by one of Alan’s two pet cougars, a male named Chaos.  She will live.  Alan also keeps alligators.

Books and Books Reading- WOW!

Friday, August 15th, 2008

A hurricane evacuated nearby South Beach but it didn’t deter a super group of people from coming to hear me read from The Lizard King Thursday night.  And I say super not just because they showed up.  Among the audience were Robin Bepler, Jennifer EnglishJudge Chris McAliley, SAC Eddie McKissick, and AUSA Tom Watts-Fitzgerald.  Having so many of the book’s true heroes in one place was a great and humbling honor.  Others in the audience were at different stages in their lives–off to college, starting out as a lawyer, retired, struggling with cancer.  I enjoyed talking with people not only about reptiles and smuggling but also about life choices and discussing how to lead a life of value, the most important question of all.  There were some knowledgeable reptile people in the audience, and even Alan Riggerman bought a book.  The staff at Books and Books were wonderful.  If there is a church of the book it is surely Books and Books of Coral Gables, Florida.