Former Florida Gators Coach Steve Spurrier, novelist Carl Hiaasen and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Joby Warrick are among the names attending the Book Festival at the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta this month.

Author Carl Hiassen. (Photo Tim Chapman)

Author Carl Hiassen. (Photo Tim Chapman)

All of the “Prologue to the Book Festival of the MJCCA” events will be held at the MJCCA, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, in Dunwoody. The main festival, which draws 10,000 visitors and more famous authors, will run Nov. 5-20 as it celebrates its 25th year. To purchase tickets for the “Prologue” and main Book Festival events, call 678-812-4005 or visit online at atlantajcc.org/bookfestival.

Sept. 7, 6:30 p.m. — Steve Spurrier, author of “Head Ball Coach: My Life in Football, Doing It Differently—and Winning.” Book-signing only; free admission, but signing only for books purchased at A Cappella Books in Atlanta. No memorabilia-signing.

Spurrier shares his story of a life in football — from growing up in Tennessee to winning the Heisman Trophy, to playing and coaching in the pros, to leading the Florida Gators to six SEC Championships and a National Championship, to elevating the South Carolina program to new heights — and coaching like nobody else. He’s been called brash, cocky, arrogant, pompous, egotistical and hilarious, but mostly he’s known as the “Head Ball Coach.” He is the only coach who can claim to be the winningest coach at two different SEC schools, and the only person who has won both the Heisman Trophy as a player and a national championship as a coach.

Sept. 13, 7:30 p.m. — Joby Warrick, author of “Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS.” Tickets are $10-$15.
Joby Warrick won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for non-fiction for this book tracing how the strain of militant Islam behind ISIS first arose in a remote Jordanian prison and spread with the unwitting aid of two American presidents. Drawing on unique high-level access to CIA and Jordanian sources, Warrick weaves gripping, moment-by-moment operational details with the perspectives of diplomats and spies, generals and heads of state, many of whom foresaw in ISIS a menace worse than Al-Qaeda.

Sept. 22, 7:30 p.m. — Carl Hiaasen, author of “Razor Girl.” Tickets run $10-$15.Razor Girl
Join Carl Hiaasen, the New York Times bestselling author of “Bad Monkey,” “Star Island” and “Hoot,” when he discusses his latest full-tilt, razor-sharp, unstoppably hilarious novel, “Razor Girl.” With a premise that can only be described as classic Hiaasen, “Razor Girl” tells the story of Merry Mansfield, a crash scam artist also known as the eponymous “Razor Girl.” When she bashes Lane Coolman’s car from behind on the road to the Florida Keys, what appears to be an ordinary accident is anything but, setting off a chain of events that spiral crazily out of control.

Sept. 25, 7:30 p.m. — Kristin Hannah, author of “The Nightingale.” In conversation with former Atlanta Journal-Constitution book columnist Greg Changnon. Tickets are $10-$15.

With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah captures the epic panorama of World War II and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war. A No. 1 New York Times bestseller and named by Amazon.com as one of the top five best books of 2015, “The Nightingale” tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love and freedom in Germany-occupied France. This is a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women.

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