Allspice 2014: A Taste of Caribbean Culture


The Institute of Caribbean Studies (ICS) of Washington, D.C. is hosting its annual Book Festival in celebration of Caribbean American Heritage Month in June. Although this year, D.C.’s ICS will produce “a banquet of activities from literature to music to art, all signifying the crossings of Caribbean identity” in the U.S., the Book Festival is one of their most salient events. The institute has selected the pieces to be showcased on the ICS website and at their book reading on June 11, 2014. The readings will take place at the Portico Book Store in Washington, D.C. This event is free and open to the public—all are welcome! [See previous post Call for Submissions: ICS Book Festival—“Losing and Rediscovering Caribbean Identity Abroad”.]

Here are the three featured books (see full descriptions in the link below):


Lauren Francis-Sharma’s ‘Til the Well Runs Dry opens in a seaside village in the north of Trinidad where young Marcia Garcia, a gifted and smart-mouthed 16-year-old seamstress, lives alone, raising two small boys and guarding a family secret. When she meets Farouk Karam, an ambitious young policeman (so taken with Marcia that he elicits the help of a tea-brewing obeah woman to guarantee her ardor), the risks and rewards in Marcia’s life amplify forever. [. . .]


With the poetry collection, More Than Me, Leslie Saint-Julien invites us to look into her mirror [. . .] as she tells you what she sees. To know love, to know pain and to know joy is the journey of this book. More Than Me compels you to go deeper into yourself and explore the corners of your soul that have yet to be introduced to you [. . .], [f]inding a love that makes you want to sing, enduring a painful experience that makes you a strong giant and feeling such joy that it seems like a summer breeze even on the coldest day.

Callaloo: A Jazz Folktale by Marjuan Canady follows Winston, a young inner city boy who goes to Brooklyn, NY to get ingredients for his Aunt’s callaloo dinner, when he is magically transported to the Caribbean island of Tobago. There, he encounters the mythical folkloric characters that roam the island. Winston’s fears and fantasies fuse together as the reality of his situation becomes dire. He must find his way out of this haunting paradise or risk being lost forever. (For Ages 3 and up.)

For more information, see

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s