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This season brings an exciting lineup of exceptional authors, celebrities, and cultural influencers, whose books represent a broad range of topics. Through Literatour, fellow book lovers come together to listen, meet and interact with their favorite authors in a variety of forums, including author meet-and-greets, book signings, panel discussions, concerts, and more. Advance registrations are required by clicking the appropriate links below, calling the J at (413) 739-4715, or signing up in person at the J. Please note that some authors will appear in person and others via Zoom.


Craig Kazin
Director, Adult Programs
(413) 739-4715

Elan Barnehama, "Escape Route"

Thursday, March 23, 7:00 PM
In Person at Springfield JCC

Set in New York City during the tumultuous late 1960s, Escape Route is told by teenager Zach, a first-generation son of Holocaust survivors and NY Mets fan. He becomes obsessed with the Vietnam War and, because he believes that the U.S. will round up and incarcerate its Jews, spends his time planning an escape route for his family. Zach meets Samm, a seventh-generation Mahanttanite who is grappling with the loss of his brother, a Vietnam veteran who suffered from PTSD and took his own life. Together, Samm and Zach explore protest, friendship, music, faith, and love during a time littered with hope and upheaval around the globe.

Elan Barnehama has taught writing and literature at several colleges, led community-based writing workshops, was a fiction editor, worked with at-risk youth, was a ghostwriter, coached high school varsity baseball, was a radio newscaster, and was a short-order cook. He is a New Yorker by destiny and a Mets fan by geography.

Jennifer Rosner, "Once We Were Home"

Thursday, April 13, 7:00 PM
In Person at Springfield JCC

The stories of a brother and sister from Poland, a boy concealed from the Nazis in France, and a refugee daughter from Germany are drawn together two decades later in Israel. They are each building lives for themselves, trying to move on from the trauma and loss that haunts them. But as their stories converge in unexpected ways, they must each ask where and to whom they truly belong. This heart-wrenching novel raises a host of issues as it confronts what it really means to find home.

Jennifer Rosner received her B.A. from Columbia University and her Ph.D. from Stanford University. She lives in Leverett, Massachusetts with her family. Her previous novel, The Yellow Bird Sings, was a Massachusetts Fiction Honors Book and a National Jewish Book Award Finalist in the categories of debut fiction and book club. Jennifer is also author of the memoir If a Tree Falls: A Family’s Quest to Hear and Be Heard and a children’s book The Mitten String, a Sydney Taylor Book Award Notable Her works have appeared in the New York Times, The Massachusetts Review, The Forward, and elsewhere.

Co-sponsored by the Western Massachusetts Jewish Genealogical Society and Richard Salter Storrs Library

Edmund Case, "Radical Inclusion: Engaging Interfaith Families for a Thriving Jewish Future"

Tuesday, May 9, 7:00 PM
In Person at Springfield JCC

Engaging in Jewish life can be a source of deep value and meaning, not only for Jews, but equally for their partners from other faith traditions, and most importantly, for their children. Through historical context, statistics, personal narratives, and practical guidance, Edmund Case, founder of InterfaithFamily, outlines three invitations to engage in Jewish life that can be extended to interfaith couples. He charts three road maps to adopt radically inclusive attitudes and policies that treat interfaith couples and partners from different faith traditions as equal and full participants in Jewish life, and implement programming designed to engage them. Together these approaches can revitalized and sustain Jewish tradition.

Edmund Case is president of the Center for Radically Inclusive Judaism. A graduate of Yale and Harvard Law School, he received a Master’s Degree in Jewish Communal Service from Hornstein Program at Brandeis University. He founded and served as CEO of Interfaith Family, which grew to become the leading non-profit working to engage interfaith families in Jewish life and community, from 2001 to 2016. He has served on a Reform movement regional outreach committee and a Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Boston task force on services to the intermarried and has written extensively on intermarriage issues.

Co-sponsored by Sinai Temple, Temple Beth El, Temple Israel of Greenfield, Circles for Jewish Living, Congregation Ahavas AChim, Jewish Community of Amherst, Beit Ahavah Reform Synagogue of Greater Northampton, and Congregation B’nai Israel