Tag Archives: St Martin Book Fair

Mailbox – St. Martin Book Fair

I (your blogger, Joanne C. Hillhouse) attended in 2015 and wrote about it and other Caribbean literary festivals in an article published in the January 2016 edition of Writer’s Digest.

Now, the line-up for 2016 just hit my mailbox. I’ve met some of these writers before…Barbados’ Adrian Green at the Nature Island Literary Festival in Dominica…America-based Nalo Hopkinson at the Antigua and Barbuda International Literary Festival





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St. Martin Book Fair Feted in the Regional and International Press

This release from House of Nehesi Publishers references regional and international media coverage of the St. Martin book  fair which I participated in 2015


Remember this school visit during my time in St. Martin where I introduced the students and festival attendees to my book Musical Youth?

and subsequently wrote about for the January 2016 edition of Writer’s Digest.

GREAT BAY, St. Martin (February 14, 2016)—The St. Martin Book Fair, slated for
mid-2016, is already being profiled in the USA and Caribbean media.

“Readers and authors will be gathering in the Caribbean for the 14th annual St.
Martin Book Fair, scheduled for June 2 through 4,” according to New York Daily News.

The “popular book fair” is a “multifaceted … multimedia … marketplace” that
connects “St. Martin and the Caribbean through workshops, seminars and other
activities,” wrote Jared McCallister, the newspaper’s “Caribbean Beat” columnist.

Before the Daily News became the first news media to announce the 2016 book
fair date in its January 31 edition, the island’s literary fest was being “talked about” in
Trinidad, said Jacqueline Sample, president of House of Nehesi Publishers (HNP).

In the Guardian of Trinidad & Tobago, award-winning author Loretta Klobah
“credits … literary festivals like the Bocas, Jamaica’s Calabash and St. Martin’s Book
Fair” as forming “an important network base” for the growing literary connectivity and
the continued desire for regional unity in the Caribbean.

The article, “The write of retreating” by Simon Lee, appeared in the Guardian
edition of January 28 – reporting on the North Coast Writing Retreat, which convened a
power-pack of authors in Trinidad in January.

In its January edition, the US-based Writer’s Digest is actually encouraging its
mega-readership to, “Plan your next vacation around … Caribbean literary festivals, and
enrich your writing life island-style.”

Listed as one of its cover stories, the article by the busy Antiguan writer Joanne
Hillhouse features five literary festivals: Anguilla Lit Fest, Trinidad’s Bocas Lit Fest,
Jamaica’s Calabash Literary Festival, Dominica’s Nature Island Literary Festival, and the
St. Martin Book Fair.

“Run by a cadre of energetic young volunteers,” writes Hillhouse about the
Friendly Island’s festival, “the event facilitates real bonding and a relaxed pace, save for
the busier singular book fair day, Saturday at the University of St. Martin, which has a
packed schedule of sales and signings.”

“Dr. Loretta Klobah and Joanne Hillhouse are exciting writers. Each was a hit at
one or two activities of previous Book Fair editions,” said St. Martin Book Fair
coordinator Shujah Reiph. “I’m very happy and thankful that both writers are sharing
their St. Martin experiences near and far.”

The St. Martin Book Fair 2016 has as its theme: “The Science of It,” said Reiph.
The Book Fair Committee (BFC) is “planning an exciting 14th anniversary literary
festival for the entire family. I think the BFC is a hit with our guest authors from around
the world. The committee is the same energetic cadre Joanne mentions in Writer’s
Digest,” said Reiph. A photo of BFC members accompanies the Daily News story.

Recently, “The St. Maarten Tourist Bureau and the Médiathèque Territoriale
received a gift of books for their public or reference library collections from HNP and the
book fair organization,” said Sample. The multilingual sets of books included titles
published by HNP and books by guest authors of St. Martin Book Fair, said Sample.


Patrick Javois (R), Médiathèque head, receiving a “gift of books” from Clarintje Kopra, St. Martin Book Fair Committee member, at the Médiathèque Territoriale last Friday.

The island-wide book fair alternates its opening ceremony between both capitals
of the island. This year the South will host the opening of the festival, said Reiph, who is
also president of Conscious Lyrics Foundation (CLF).

Conscious Lyrics Foundation and House of Nehesi Publishers organize the St.
Martin Book Fair in collaboration with the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau, University of St.
Martin (USM), LC Fleming Foundation, and St. Martin Tourist Office.

And since WordPress is messing with me, you can read the original release minus the screwy formatting here: OESnews16-BF16_1

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FYI – St. Martin Book Fair

I was promoted as an invited guest to the St. Martin Book Fair shortly after the release of my book Oh Gad! in 2012. It didn’t work out (these things happen) but this year’s general announcement came to my inbox and I thought why not share it. I can’t swing it but for those who can, here’s the letter from the organizers in full For Your Information:

April 30, 2013

Dear Author:

Conscious Lyrics Foundation and House of Nehesi Publishers in collaboration with the St. Maarten Tourist Bureau and the University of St. Martin, are cordially inviting you to exhibit your book(s)/eBooks/recordings at the 11th annual St. Martin Book Fair – “Drum Beats,” May 30 – June 1, 2013, at the Chamber of Commerce Building (Maison des Entreprises), Spring Concordia, Marigot, and the University of St. Martin (USM), Philipsburg.

The organizers will provide a table for you and your publication(s) and for your book signing, on a “first-come-first-served” basis, at:

1. The Opening Ceremony, Chamber of Commerce Building (Maison des Entreprises), Spring Concordia, Marigot, Thursday, May 30, at 8 PM

2. The main book fair day, USM, Philipsburg, Saturday, June 1, from 9 AM – 5 PM To secure your table, I may be contacted at diplomatic_concept@hotmail.com

Since 2003, the St. Martin Book Fair has been offering to the people of St. Martin and our visitors three exciting days of Caribbean and international books, literature and culture, recitals, and exhibition of educational and media tools, highlighted with:

Multilingual/multi-topic workshops (English, Dutch, Kreyol, Spanish, Papiamentu, French).

Book exhibitions; Book launches and signings of newly published books.

Among the past book fair guest authors are: George Lamming, Xu Xi, Max Rippon, Nidaa Khoury, Lasana M. Sekou, Wena Poon, Frank Martinus Arion, Mutabaruka, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Tabish Khair, Emilio Jorge Rodríguez, Kendel Hippolyte, Chiqui Vicioso, Marion Bethel, Kamau Brathwaite, Camille Aubaude, Funso Aiyejina, Patrick Chamoiseau, Afua Cooper, Molefi K. Asante, Jr., Christian Campbell, David Abdulah, leading economist Norman Girvan, Harvard scholar Francis Abiola Irele, Nobel laureate Derek Walcott.

Over 1000 people participated in the St. Martin Book Fair activities in 2010 and 2011. We would be honored to have you and your family join us in 2013 for what promises to be a Charismatically Caribbean book fair. For additional information kindly contact us at Tel. (590) 690.30.73.66, consciouslyrics20@gmail.com or visit www.houseofnehesipublish.com for book fair updates at http://www.houseofnehesipublish.com/book_fair2040.html.


Conneir Thelwell

Book Fair Committee


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