Guests Of Honor
Keynote Speaker: James Patterson
In total, James Patterson’s books have sold over 300 million copies worldwide. In 2013, it was estimated that 1 in 5 suspense/thriller novels sold (in all formats) was written by James Patterson, he recently hit ten million e-books sold in 2013, and holds the Guinness record for the most #1 New York Times bestsellers of any author. And his success isn’t based solely on thrillers like the perennially popular Alex Cross, Women’s Murder Club and Michael Bennett series. Patterson is now also the fastest growing middle grade series author in 2013 and, all combined, Patterson has sold over 7.5MM middle grade books world-wide.
Sunday Brunch Guest of Honor: Dave Barry
Dave Barry is the author of fiction, non-fiction, adult, children’s books, and the Edgar nominated Big Trouble. For many years he wrote a newspaper column that appeared in more than 500 newspapers and generated thousands of letters from readers who thought he should be fired. Despite this, Barry won the Pulitzer Prize for commentary, although he misplaced it for several years, which is why his wife now keeps it in a secure location that he does not know about.
Florida Guest of Honor: James W. Hall
James W. Hall is the author of 18 novels. Thirteen of which feature a hardcore loner named Thorn, who makes a meager living tying bonefish flies. Thorn, and his private eye pal, Sugarman, have teamed up in a dozen books to thwart animal smugglers, cruise ship hijackers, rogue medical experimenters, and other assorted villains. His most recent non-fiction effort is Hit Litwhich is an analysis of twelve of the most commercially successful novels of the last century and the dozen features those books have in common.
Forensic Guest of Honor: Ric Gillespie
In 1973 Ric Gillespie began a twelve-year career as an aviation accident investigator and risk manager in the aviation insurance industry. In 1985, with his wife Pat Thrasher, he founded The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery. Known by its acronym TIGHAR (pronounced tiger). TIGHAR’s best known historical investigation is the Earhart Project – a comprehensive, science-based inquiry into the iconic mystery of Amelia Earhart’s 1937 disappearance. Since launching TIGHAR’s investigation in 1988, Ric has led ten expeditions – most recently in July of 2012 – to the remote uninhabited South Pacific atoll of Nikumaroro where a large and growing preponderance of evidence suggests Earhart died as a castaway.