South Florida Book Festival
weekly wow july 12, 2017 -south florida book festival


It's almost here!  The South Florida Book Festival comes to AARLCC on July 18th, 21st and 22nd

The South Florida Book Festival, held at the African-American Research Library & Cultural Center (AARLCC), will celebrate "Book Life" with an exciting line-up of authors, journalists, speakers and presenters. From writing and natural hair-care workshops to book signings and presentations to panel discussions and guest speakers, this year's Festival has something for everyone. 

The Festival kick-off event is Taste the Islands on July 18th from 6:30 to 9:30PM with special guests Chef Irie (Hugh A. Sinclair) and Cynthia "Chef Thia" Verna, cookbook authors and stars of the PBS Television's Taste the Islands program. Guests can meet the chefs and enjoy delicious island-inspired cuisine, tropical cocktails, dancing and live music. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased through Eventbrite. Ages 21 and over.

Angela Henry, national mystery author and blogger, is back at the South Florida Book Festival for another Mystery Writer Workshop being held Friday, July 21st at 1PM. Her hands-on workshop covers all the steps needed to write your own mystery novel. Tickets are $10 and space is limited to 20 participants. Tickets and registration can be completed via  Eventbrite.

An Evening with the Literary Stars will take place on Friday evening from 6:30 to 9:30PM. Guests can meet and mingle with Festival authors and enjoy live music, cocktails and hors d'oeuvres. Each guest will also receive a signed book of their choice from one of the Festival authors. Tickets are $30 online and $35 at the door, and can also be purchased through  Eventbrite. Ages 21 and over


South Florida Book Festival – Schedule for Saturday, July 22nd

All events are free and open to the public. Registration through Evenbrite is requested but not required.

10:30-11:30AM Taymer Mason - Caribbean Vegan: Meat-Free, Egg-Free, Dairy-Free Authentic Island Cuisine for Every Occasion
10:30-11:30AM Ingram Publishing Josh Floyd - Self-Publishing through IngramSpark®: Taking Your Business to the Next Level
Noon-1PM Erin Lowry - Broke Millennial: Stop Scraping By and Get Your Financial Life Together
Noon-1:30PM How to Get a Ring on Your Finger with King Kevin Dorival, Queen C. and Yahrah St. John
Noon-1PM Alison McMahan - Successfully Pitch your Book into a Movie/Screenplay
Noon-1PM Bishop Henry B Fernandez - Favor Unleashed
12:30-2:30PM Lolita Files - Once Upon a Time in Compton: From Gangsta Rap to Gang Wars... Tupac & Biggie
2-3PM Wesley Lowery - Pulitzer Prize-winner and author of They Can't Kill Us All
2:30-3:30PM Simone Kelly - 5 Marketing Secrets to Promote Your Novel
3-4PM Suzzette Turnbull - The Ultimate Guide to Getting Started With Social Media
3:30-5PM Chef Kevin Belton - Food Smackdown: Cajun Bites from New Orleans
4-5PM Miko Branch, Pamela Frederick Mar and Taymer Mason - Natural Hair Care & Maintenance


2017 South Florida Book Festival Featured Authors, Guest Speakers and Presenters

  • Wesley Lowery is an award-winning reporter covering justice, race and politics for the Washington Post. He's the author of They Can't Kill Us All: Ferguson, Baltimore, and a New Era in America's Racial Justice Movement and a CNN political contributor.
  • Angela Henry is the author of seven mystery-thriller books. She also wrote the fantasy novel Labyrinth Society under the name Angie Kelly and, in 2011, launched the MystNoir website, which features African-American mysteries and authors.
  • Kevin Belton is the star of the PBS cooking series, New Orleans Cooking with Kevin Belton, author of Big Flavors of New Orleans and an instructor at the New Orleans School of Cooking. He was recently recognized by the American Culinary Federation as one of the top 30 chefs in Louisiana.
  • Miko Branch is the co-founder and CEO of Miss Jessie's products for curly hair. Miss Jessie's hair products were developed after Miko and her sister Titi had difficulty finding products for their natural, curly hair. Named after their grandmother, Miss Jessie's line features award-winning, ground-breaking products that enhance textured, curly hair for people of every ethnic background.
  • Bishop Henry B. Fernandez  is an anointed speaker, accomplished author, successful entrepreneur and, with his wife Carol, the co-pastor of The Faith Center in Fort Lauderdale.​ He is the author of 12 books and his book, Faith, Family & Finances, reached #1 on Amazon Best Sellers List.​​​​​ In Favor Unleashed, Fernandez takes readers on an unparalleled adventure through God’s promises for every believer, empowering them to resist fear, doubt, unbelief, the opposition of others, and every other obstacle that comes against His purpose in your life.
  • King Kevin Dorival is a game-changing mentor, author and top marketing director for a multi-million dollar construction firm. His transformative memoir became a stage play and documentary, The Courage to Believe: Never Give Up. His new book, 7 Types of Queens, Kings Desire, will be released June 2017.
  • Yahrah St. John is a bestselling, award-winning author of more than 20 novels who has been published by Harlequin since 2004. Her stories are crafted with true-to-life characters and filled with romance, passion and drama.
  • Lolita Files is a journalist/author whose most recent book, the non-fiction Once Upon A Time in Compton, was co-written by two former Compton gang unit detectives. It explores the world of Compton, California, covering some of the biggest moments in pop culture - the early days of N.W.A, the L.A. Riots, the murders of Tupac and Biggie and the fall of the Compton Police Department.
  • Simone Kelly is the author of the mystery-suspense novel, Like a Fly on the Wall, which brings together her passion for love, dating, mystery and the supernatural. A world traveler, media personality and certified Reiki-Master, Kelly's life's purpose is teach, coach, uplift and inspire others.
  • Erin Lowry is a millennial personal finance expert, author, speaker and the founder of Her book, Broke Millennial: Stop Scraping By and Get Your Financial Life Together, is a step-by-step guide to go from flat-broke to financial whiz.
  • Pamela Frederick Mair is an author, holistic cosmetologist, hair health coach, educator, nutritional consultant, and the owner/CEO/creator/founder of Rxestoratives Hair and Skin Wellness®, an all-natural hair and skin product line.
  • Taymer Mason, the author of Caribbean Vegan cookbook, is a food scientist and organic cosmetic developer. She is also the author of Caribbean Smoothies and Kink Alchemy, a natural hair book. Her all-natural skin and hair product line will launch in fall 2017.
  • Alison McMahan is equally at home writing fiction and nonfiction. Her historical mystery, The Saffron Crocus, won the Rosemary award for Best YA Historical and the Florida Writers Association's Royal Palm Literary Award. In addition to authoring books, she writes screenplays and produces documentaries.
  • Queen Cezanne Taharqa is an author, workshop facilitator, inspirational speaker and award-winning visual/spoken word artist. Her self-help novel, Journey of a Sister, and its sister book, How to Get the Ring on Your Finger, feature her original art and poetry.
  • Suzzette Turnbull is the CEO of Uncommon Marketing, the founder of Social Media for Entertainers-Social Media Trainings to Simplify Your Life and a social media speaker and trainer. Additionally, she is the author of The Ultimate Guide to Understanding and Getting Started with Social Media.
  • Sherri Riley is the author of Exponential Living: Stop Spending 100% of Your Time on Who You Are, a life strategist and empowerment speaker. She works with high achievers to make choices that lead to less stress, more clarity and internal peace.
  • Hugh A. Sinclair is better known as Chef Irie, the co-host of the Taste the Islands television series. Currently a South Florida resident, Chef Irie is originally from Jamaica. He is a professionally certified personal chef and caterer who has worked at some of South Florida's premier establishments.
  • Cynthia "Chef Thia" Verna is a culinary expert specializing in gourmet Caribbean-fusion cuisine, an accomplished author and co-host of Taste the Islands television series. Haitian-born Chef Thia has studied under Haitian top chef Reginald Koury, worked at numerous prestigious hotels and restaurants and currently operates her private catering service, Chef Thia's Cuisine.
  • Josh Floyd will present "Self-Publishing through Ingram Spark: Taking Your Business to the Next Level."  IngramSpark® is an award-winning independent publishing platform that offers the same fully integrated print and digital products and global distribution services enjoyed by big-time publishers to the indie-publishing community through a single platform.

For more information and updates, please visit our South Florida Book Festival web page. 

Sponsors of the South Florida Book Festival include Bank of America, Friends of AARLCC, Reading Pays More, Broward Public Library Foundation, National Sales Network, Holman Enterprises and Broward County Cultural Division.


book -they can't kill us allbook -big flavorsbook -a chance with youbook -broke millennialbook -caribbean vegan 

Books by 2017 South Florida Book Festival Authors


Save These Dates...

  • Don't forget to vote for your favorite image during your next visit to the Active Learning Center in the Main Library! Hurry -voting ends July 31st.
  • Main Library's Festive Music and Dance Experience – August 26 from 2 to 8PM

Broward County’s Human Resources Division Open House

we want you!Broward County’s Human Resources Division Open House is scheduled for Thursday, August 3rd from 11AM to 4PM on the 6th floor of the Main Library.  

This Open House will give the public an opportunity to interact with Broward County agencies as well as learn about various employment and volunteer opportunities. Some of the agencies present will include Human Resources, Animal Care, Aviation, Environmental, Libraries, Parks, Port Everglades and Transportation in addition to the County’s benefits providers.   

This is a great opportunity to obtain information on career opportunities in addition to networking with the County's many agencies and learning about the services they provide. This event is open to the general public.

swimming in knowledge
Art Spot:  Can you name the library branch that owns this public art?


  • Artist:  Leslie Fry
  • Title:  Swimming in Knowledge
  • Medium:  Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete
  • Size:  39" x 74" x 6"
  • Year Installed:  2005
  • The motifs used emphasize nature in combination with human knowledge and access to a sea of information. Above the interior entryway, this colorful sculptural wall relief whimsically portrays leaping Pompanos (fish), the city's emblem, out of a sea of letters and numbers, representing potential ideas waiting to be formed. How fitting to have a ‘school’ of fish to inspire learning. 

Come back next week for the answer!

book club

Love to Talk Books?

If reading and discussing books and literary is your thing, why not check out one of the many free book clubs and discussion groups we offer at library locations countywide. Meet other book lovers and maybe get a new perspective on that new bestseller or classic literary work. 


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