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Author speaks about new novel in Coquitlam for Jewish Book Fest

Steven Mayoff, the writer of "The Island Gospel According to Samson Grief," will present at the Burquest Community Jewish Association in Coquitlam on Feb. 11.
Writer Steven Mayoff will present in Coquitlam on Feb. 11, 2024.

A fiction and poetry author from Prince Edward Island will appear in Coquitlam as part of the 39th annual JCC Jewish Book Festival.

Steven Mayoff, the writer of The Island Gospel According to Samson Grief, which came out last October via Radiant Press, will speak at the Burquest Community Jewish Association (2860 Dewdney Trunk Rd.) on Feb. 11 at 1 p.m.

Entry is by donation.

Mayoff’s novel follows Samson Grief, a reclusive painter from P.E.I. who is haunted by three imaginary red-haired characters in the form of Judas Iscariot, Ragin and Shylock.

They are messengers who have declared the island as the new Promised Land and want Grief to build a synagogue.

Mayoff has also published a story collection called Fatted Calf Blues; the novel Our Lady of Steerage; a poetry chapbook called Leonard’s Flat; and Swinging Between Water and Stone, a poetry collection.

Originally from Montréal, Mayoff will also appear at the book festival on Feb. 12 with Jeffrey Groberman for the Laugh and Learn - Humour Coast to Coast panel at 11:30 a.m. at the Jewish Community Centre of Greater Vancouver (950 West 41st Ave.).

Running from Feb. 10 to 15, the festival attracts writers from across North America, Israel and England.

“We are thrilled to reconnect with our audiences and share moving experiences around books and ideas, as they create such meaningful community gatherings,” said festival director Dana Camil Hewitt in a news release.

“The nucleus of our festival is Jewish-themed, but our speakers, events and audience happily represent a diversity of cultures and lived experiences that defy narrow categorization. We bring forward universal themes and whether it's a written, illustrated or performed word, the Jewish Book Festival strives to encompass them all.”