June title

 Book Group Meeting
June 19th at 1pm
At the Library!!


Bohjalian's (The Light in the Ruins) impressive 16th novel charts the life of a teenage girl undone after a nuclear disaster. Already troubled, rebellious Emily Shepard becomes orphaned and homeless after the meltdown of Reddington's nuclear power plant in Vermont's Northeast Kingdom. Wandering aimlessly, she finds refuge in a local shelter with Cameron, a nine-year-old boy she soon finds herself protecting. Emily is banished once she's pegged as the daughter of heavy-drinking parents both employed (and held responsible by surviving townsfolk) at the power plant where the meltdown occurred. Frequent flashbacks to her days at school and the youth shelter show her surrounded by influential miscreants, self-abusing "cutters," and drug takers like friends Andrea and Camille. Stealing and shoplifting through neighboring towns in order to survive the frigid New England winter becomes an often harrowing ordeal for Emily and Cameron as she attempts to figure out her next move. Through her first-person narration, readers become intimately familiar with Emily (and Cameron), as she grapples with the frustrating life of a misunderstood homeless youth on the run. Emily continually surprises herself with her newfound maternal instincts for Cameron and how difficult it is to survive life on the streets. Her admiration for kindred spirit Emily Dickinson serves to humanize her plight, as does an epiphany in the book's bittersweet conclusion. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

May title

Book Discussion
Wednesday May 15th at 1pm

South African comedian Noah brings a fresh and tonic perspective to the role of host for The Daily Show, frequently joking about life as a mixed-race child under the tyranny of apartheid. He now reveals the full brunt of the terror and diabolical absurdity he endured in this substantial collection of staggering personal essays deftly shaped by his stand-up gifts for timing and precision. Incisive, funny, and vivid, these true tales are anchored to his portrait of his courageous, rebellious, and religious mother, who defied racially restrictive laws to secure an education and a career for herself and to have a child with a white Swiss German even though sex between whites and blacks was illegal; neither parent could be seen in public with their son. So dangerous was life for mischievous, polyglot Noah that he spent much of his time alone indoors and later endured hunger, homelessness, jail, and violence. But his episodic and electrifying memoir sparkles with funny stories of epic teen awkwardness, astounding accounts of his nervy entrepreneurial success as a music bootlegger and DJ, and vibrant and insightful descriptions of daily life in Johannesburg and Soweto. Noah's coming-of-age paralleled South Africa's emergence from apartheid, and his candid and compassionate essays deepen our perception of the complexities of race, gender, and class. Hopefully, Noah will continue to tell his bracing and redefining story. --Seaman, Donna Copyright 2016 Booklist

April title


 We'll see if this one lives up to the buzz!  We have copies of The Alice Network to check out and the group will meet on Wednesday April 17th at 1pm.  Hope to see you there!

Featuring an exclusive excerpt from Kate Quinn's next incredible historical novel, THE HUNTRESS NEW YORK TIMES & USA TODAY BESTSELLER #1 GLOBE AND MAIL HISTORICAL FICTION BESTSELLER One of NPR's Best Books of the Year! One of Bookbub's Biggest Historical Fiction Books of the Year! Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick! The 2017 Girly Book Club Book of the Year! A Summer Book Pick from Good Housekeeping, Parade, Library Journal, Goodreads, Liz and Lisa, and BookBub In an enthralling new historical novel from national bestselling author Kate Quinn, two women--a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947--are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption. 1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She's also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie's parents banish her to Europe to have her "little problem" taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister. 1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she's recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she's trained by the mesmerizing Lili, the "Queen of Spies", who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy's nose. Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. Until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn't heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the truth...no matter where it leads. "Both funny and heartbreaking, this epic journey of two courageous women is an unforgettable tale of little-known wartime glory and sacrifice. Quinn knocks it out of the park with this spectacular book!"--Stephanie Dray, New York Times bestselling author of America's First Daughter.

March title


Stop by the library and pick up a copy of Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi.
Copies are available now! We'll meet at the Slusser Center (lower level) on Wednesday March 20th at 1pm.

Winner of the NBCC's John Leonard First Book Prize. A New York Times 2016 Notable Book. One of Oprah's 10 Favorite Books of 2016. NPR's Debut Novel of the Year. One of Buzzfeed's Best Fiction Books Of 2016. One of Time 's Top 10 Novels of 2016
" Homegoing is an inspiration." --Ta-Nehisi Coates
The unforgettable New York Times best seller begins with the story of two half-sisters, separated by forces beyond their control: one sold into slavery, the other married to a British slaver. Written with tremendous sweep and power, Homegoing traces the generations of family who follow, as their destinies lead them through two continents and three hundred years of history, each life indeliably drawn, as the legacy of slavery is fully revealed in light of the present day. Effia and Esi are born into different villages in eighteenth-century Ghana. Effia is married off to an Englishman and lives in comfort in the palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle. Unbeknownst to Effia, her sister, Esi, is imprisoned beneath her in the castle's dungeons, sold with thousands of others into the Gold Coast's booming slave trade, and shipped off to America, where her children and grandchildren will be raised in slavery. One thread of Homegoing follows Effia's descendants through centuries of warfare in Ghana, as the Fante and Asante nations wrestle with the slave trade and British colonization. The other thread follows Esi and her children into America. From the plantations of the South to the Civil War and the Great Migration, from the coal mines of Pratt City, Alabama, to the jazz clubs and dope houses of twentieth-century Harlem, right up through the present day, Homegoing makes history visceral, and captures, with singular and stunning immediacy, how the memory of captivity came to be inscribed in the soul of a nation.   -- provided by the publisher

Interesting links

Reading There There has prompted me to search out more information on some of the background in the book. Here are some links I found:

Occupation of Alcatraz from wikipedia
We Hold this Rock from the National Park Service
Interview with Tommy Orange from The Best of Our Knowledge
Sand Creek Massacre from wikipedia 
Gertrude Stein quote from wikiquote

February title

February's book is There There by Tommy Orange. The meeting will take place on Wednesday February 20th at 1pm in the conference room on the lower level of the Slusser Center. There are regular print, large print and audio editions here at the library to check out. 
 *Starred Review* The at-first disconnected characters from whose perspectives Orange voices his symphonic debut are united by the upcoming Big Oakland Powwow. Some have been working on the event for months; some will sneak in with only good intentions, while others are plotting to steal the sizable cash prizes. Creative interludes from an omniscient narrator describe, for example, the names of First Nations people or what it means to be an Urban Indian: We ride buses, trains, and cars across, over, and under concrete plains. Being Indian has never been about returning to the land. The land is everywhere or nowhere. Opal recalls occupying Alcatraz as a child with her family; today she raises her sister's grandchildren as her own after their unspeakable loss. With grant support, Dene endeavors to complete the oral-history project his deceased uncle couldn't, recording the stories of Indians living in Oakland. In his thirties, with his white mother's blessing, Edwin reaches out to the Native father he never met. While anticipation of the powwow provides a baseline of suspense, the path Orange lights through these and his novel's many other stories thrills on its own. Engrossing at its most granular, in characters' thoughts and fleeting moments, There There introduces an exciting voice.--Bostrom, Annie Copyright 2018 Booklist Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.

January title

We'll be reading Amor Towles' first novel Rules of Civility for our January selection. We can explore what his writing was like before the gargantuan bestseller "A Gentleman in Moscow". Copies of this book are available to check out from the temporary library in the Slusser Center, lower level (closed the week of Christmas). Discussion will be Wednesday January 23rd at 1pm in the Community Room at the library.


In his smashing debut, Towles (A Gentleman in Moscow) details the intriguing life of Katherine Kontent and how her world is upended by the fateful events of 1938. Kate and her roommate, Evelyn Ross, have moved to Manhattan for its culture and the chance to class up their lives with glamour-be it with jazz musicians, trust fund lotharios, or any man with a hint of charm who will pay for dinner and drinks. Both Kate and Evelyn are enamored of sophisticated Tinker Grey, who they meet in a jazz club; he appears to be another handsome, moneyed gent, but as the women vie for his affection, a tragic event may seal a burgeoning romance's fate. New York's wealthy class is thick with snobbery, unexpected largesse, pettiness, jealousies, and an unmistakable sense of who belongs and who does not, but it's the undercurrent of unease-as with Towles's depiction of how the upper class can use its money and influence to manipulate others' lives in profoundly unsavory ways-that gives his vision depth and complexity. His first effort is remarkable for its strong narrative, original characters and a voice influenced by Fitzgerald and Capote, but clearly true to itself.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

December title

And Every Morning the Way Homes Gets Longer and Longer by Fredrik Backman.
December 19th at 1pm
Copies are now available!

From the New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove, My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry, and Britt-Marie Was Here comes an exquisitely moving portrait of an elderly man's struggle to hold on to his most precious memories, and his family's efforts to care for him even as they must find a way to let go. With all the same charm of his bestselling full-length novels, here Fredrik Backman once again reveals his unrivaled understanding of human nature and deep compassion for people in difficult circumstances. This is a tiny gem with a message you'll treasure for a lifetime. -- Provided by publisher.

November title


Longer nights lend themselves to more reading! Our November title is Warlight by Michael Ondaatje (winner of the Booker Prize for The English Patient). Copies of the book are available at the Slusser Center library - stop by and pick one up. Also available in large print and audio.  The group will meet on Wednesday November 28th at 1pm in the Slusser Center conference room (lower level).



 *Starred Review* The smoke has yet to clear in war-battered 1945 London when Nathaniel, 14, and his sister, Rachel, 16, are left in the care of a man they call the Moth, about whom they know nearly nothing. Nathaniel is certain that the Moth and his curious friends, especially the former boxer known as the Darter, are criminals, and, indeed, he is soon caught up in strange and dangerous undertakings involving barges on the Thames at night and clandestine deliveries. Even Nathaniel's first sexual relationship is illicit, as the young lovers meet in empty houses, thanks to her real-estate agent brother. Evidence slowly accrues suggesting that Nathaniel and Rachel's mother, Rose, may be with British intelligence. Ondaatje's (The Cat's Table, 2011) gorgeous, spellbinding prose is precise and lustrous, witty, and tender. As the painful truth of this fractured family emerges and Rose's riveting story takes center stage, Ondaatje balances major and minor chords, sun and shadow, with masterful grace beautifully concentrated in warlight, his term for the sparest possible illumination during the city's defensive blackouts. With vivid evocations of place, quiet suspense, exquisite psychological portraiture, and spotlighted historical events a legendary chess game; horrific, hidden postwar vengeance; and the mass destruction of government archives Ondaatje's drolly charming, stealthily sorrowful tale casts subtle light on secret skirmishes and wounds sustained as war is slowly forged into peace.  
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association.

October title

For October we'll be reading the book National Book Award finalist for non-fiction in 2017 Never Caught: The Washingtons' Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge by Erica Armstrong Dunbar. Copies are available at the library (lower level of the Slusser Center).
PLEASE NOTE: Books will be available starting on Wednesday 10/3. The discussion will take place on Wednesday 10/24 at 1pm.
A startling and eye-opening look into America’s First Family, Never Caught is the powerful narrative of Ona Judge, George and Martha Washington’s runaway slave who risked it all to escape the nation’s capital and reach freedom.

When George Washington was elected president, he reluctantly left behind his beloved Mount Vernon to serve in Philadelphia, the temporary seat of the nation’s capital, after a brief stay in New York. In setting up his household he took Tobias Lear, his celebrated secretary, and nine slaves, including Ona Judge, about which little has been written. As he grew accustomed to Northern ways, there was one change he couldn’t get his arms around: Pennsylvania law required enslaved people be set free after six months of residency in the state. Rather than comply, Washington decided to circumvent the law. Every six months he sent the slaves back down south just as the clock was about to expire.

Though Ona Judge lived a life of relative comfort, the few pleasantries she was afforded were nothing compared to freedom, a glimpse of which she encountered first-hand in Philadelphia. So, when the opportunity presented itself one clear and pleasant spring day in Philadelphia, Judge left everything she knew to escape to New England. Yet freedom would not come without its costs.

At just twenty-two-years-old, Ona became the subject of an intense manhunt led by George Washington, who used his political and personal contacts to recapture his property.

Impeccably researched, historian Erica Armstrong Dunbar weaves a powerful tale and offers fascinating new scholarship on how one young woman risked it all to gain freedom from the famous founding father.    GOODREADS.COM

September title

We will have a discussion of Elisabeth Tova Bailey's The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating on Wednesday September 19th at 1pm at the SLUSSER CENTER - lower level.  You can pick up a copy of the book in our temporary library office at the Slusser Center anytime Tuesday - Friday 10am - 4:30pm.  Hope to see you soon!

In a work that beautifully demonstrates the rewards of closely observing nature, Elisabeth Tova Bailey shares an inspiring and intimate story of her encounter with a Neohelix albolabris --a common woodland snail. While an illness keeps her bedridden, Bailey watches a wild snail that has taken up residence on her nightstand. As a result, she discovers the solace and sense of wonder that this mysterious creature brings and comes to a greater understanding of her own place in the world. Intrigued by the snail's molluscan anatomy, cryptic defenses, clear decision making, hydraulic locomotion, and courtship activities, Bailey becomes an astute and amused observer, offering a candid and engaging look into the curious life of this underappreciated small animal. The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating is a remarkable journey of survival and resilience, showing us how a small part of the natural world can illuminate our own human existence, while providing an appreciation of what it means to be fully alive.

August title

On Wednesday August 15th at 1pm we will be discussing Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue. WE WILL MEET AT THE SLUSSER CENTER LOWER LEVEL!!
Jende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant living in Harlem, has come to the United States to provide a better life for himself, his wife, Neni, and their six-year-old son. In the fall of 2007, Jende can hardly believe his luck when he lands a job as a chauffeur for Clark Edwards, a senior executive at Lehman Brothers. Clark demands punctuality, discretion, and loyalty—and Jende is eager to please. Clark’s wife, Cindy, even offers Neni temporary work at the Edwardses’ summer home in the Hamptons. With these opportunities, Jende and Neni can at last gain a foothold in America and imagine a brighter future.  However, the world of great power and privilege conceals troubling secrets, and soon Jende and Neni notice cracks in their employers’ fa├žades. When the financial world is rocked by the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the Jongas are desperate to keep Jende’s job—even as their marriage threatens to fall apart. As all four lives are dramatically upended, Jende and Neni are forced to make an impossible choice.  -- goodreads.com
Author biography 
Discussion questions

July title

Copies of Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave are available at the Reference Desk.  Stop by and pick up up! The group will meet on Wednesday July 18th at 1pm.

The "insightful, stark, and heartbreaking" (Publishers Weekly, starred review) novel about three lives entangled during World War II from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Little Bee. "Cleave's foray into historical fiction is both grand and intimate. The novel's ability to stay small and quiet against the raging tableau of war is what also makes it glorious….an absorbing account of survival, racism, classism, love, and pain, and the scars left by all of them…Cleave's prose is imbued with a Dickensian flair, deploying brilliant metaphors and crackling dialogue." -- The New York Times Book Review "With dazzling prose, sharp English wit, and compassion, Cleave paints a powerful portrait of war's effects on those who fight and those left behind." -- People Book of the Week "The London Blitz is cinematically re-imagined in a deeply moving new novel from Chris Cleave. As he did in Little Bee , he places forthright characters in impossible situations in Everyone Brave Is Forgiven , a story set during World War II." --Carol Memmott, Star Tribune (Minneapolis) "Magnificent and profoundly moving…This dazzling novel of World War II is full of unforgettable characters and the keen emotional insights that moved readers of Chris Cleave's Little Bee ." --Shelf Awareness "Real, engaging characters, based loosely on Cleave's own grandparents, come alive on the page. Insightful, stark, and heartbreaking, Cleave's latest novel portrays the irrepressible hopefulness that can arise in the face of catastrophe." -- Publishers Weekly (starred review) "Among all the recent fictions about the war, Cleave's miniseries of a novel is a surprising standout, with irresistibly engaging characters." -- Kirkus Reviews "Beautifully written, funny, gut-wrenching, and, above all, honest." -- The Daily Mail (UK) "Intensely felt…Full of insight and memorably original phrasings." -- Booklist "Well crafted and compelling…nostalgic and bittersweet." -- Library Journal. London, 1939. The day war is declared, Mary North leaves finishing school unfinished, goes straight to the War Office, and signs up. Tom Shaw decides to ignore the war--until he learns his roommate Alistair Heath has unexpectedly enlisted. Then the conflict can no longer be avoided. Young, bright, and brave, Mary is certain she'd be a marvelous spy. When she is--bewilderingly--made a teacher, she finds herself defying prejudice to protect the children her country would rather forget. Tom, meanwhile, finds that he will do anything for Mary. And when Mary and Alistair meet, it is love, as well as war, that will test them in ways they could not have imagined, entangling three lives in violence and passion, friendship and deception, inexorably shaping their hopes and dreams. Set in London during the years of 1939--1942, when citizens had slim hope of survival, much less victory; and on the strategic island of Malta, which was daily devastated by the Axis barrage, Everyone Brave is Forgiven features little-known history and a perfect wartime love story inspired by the real-life love letters between Chris Cleave's grandparents. This dazzling novel dares us to understand that, against the great theater of world events, it is the intimate losses, the small battles, the daily human triumphs that change us most.  ...publisher information

 

June title

Stop by the library to pick up a copy of Pachinko by Min Jin Lee. Our meeting will be held by the fireplace on Wednesday June 20th at 1pm. All are welcome!

 Pachinko follows one Korean family through the generations, beginning in early 1900s Korea with Sunja, the prized daughter of a poor yet proud family, whose unplanned pregnancy threatens to shame them all. Deserted by her lover, Sunja is saved when a young tubercular minister offers to marry and bring her to Japan.

So begins a sweeping saga of an exceptional family in exile from its homeland and caught in the indifferent arc of history. Through desperate struggles and hard-won triumphs, its members are bound together by deep roots as they face enduring questions of faith, family, and identity.  GoodReads


May title

Stop by the library to pick up a copy of Atul Gawande's book Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End.  We'll meet up in the fireplace area of the library on Wednesday May 16th at 1pm.  Join us for a discussion of this important and moving book!

*Starred Review* Distressed by how the waning days of our lives are given over to treatments that addle our brains and sap our bodies for a sliver's chance of benefit, surgeon Gawande (The Checklist Manifesto, 2010) confronts the contemporary experience of aging and dying. Culture and modern medicine encourage an end-of-life approach that focuses on safety and protection but is sadly shallow. He frets that residents of nursing homes are often lonely and bored. Physicians are keen on intervening whenever a body is diseased or broken. Yet this medical imperative applied to terminally ill individuals can be frustrating, expensive, and even disastrous. Gawande suggests that what most of us really want when we are elderly and incapable of taking care of ourselves are simple pleasures and the autonomy to script the final chapter of life. Making his case with stories about people who are extremely frail, very old, or dying, he explores some options available when decrepitude sets in or death approaches: palliative care, an assisted living facility, hospice, an elderly housing community, and family caregivers. One of these stories is the impassioned account of his father's deterioration and death from a tumor of the spinal cord. As a writer and a doctor, Gawande appreciates the value of a good ending.-- Tony Miksanek Copyright 2014 Booklist

April title

Copies of Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf are available to borrow - pick up a copy at the Reference Desk. Large print and audio copies are also available. The book is also available as an ebook and audiobook on Overdrive. The group will meet Wednesday April 18th at 1pm by the fireplace.

 A spare yet eloquent, bittersweet yet inspiring story of a man and a woman who, in advanced age, come together to wrestle with the events of their lives and their hopes for the imminent future.
In the familiar setting of Holt, Colorado, home to all of Kent Haruf's inimitable fiction [Plainsong, Eventide, Benediction], Addie Moore pays an unexpected visit to a neighbor, Louis Waters. Her husband died years ago, as did his wife, and in such a small town they naturally have known of each other for decades; in fact, Addie was quite fond of Louis's wife. His daughter lives hours away in Colorado Springs, her son even farther away in Grand Junction, and Addie and Louis have long been living alone in houses now empty of family, the nights so terribly lonely, especially with no one to talk with.

Their brave adventures - their pleasures and their difficulties - are hugely involving and truly resonant, making Our Souls at Night the perfect final installment to this beloved writer's enduring contribution to American literature.    Bookbrowse.com

March title

I would say we chose this title just for the beautiful spring looking cover, but we also chose it because the book was recently made into a film.  We're thinking a showing of the film would be a good follow up to reading the book! We'll have our discussion on Wednesday March 21st at 1pm by the fireplace. At that point we'll decide if there is any interest in seeing the movie!  Pick up a copy of the book at the Reference Desk.

In this richly imagined international bestseller, Deborah Moggach deftly brings to life a world of art, beauty, lust, greed, deception--and tulips. Young, beautiful, and poor, Sophia wed Cornelis Sandvoort more to save her family than herself. Wealthy from the shipping trade, Cornelis sought a new young wife to give himself the joy, and heir, that not even his considerable fortune could buy. Chosen by Cornelis to immortalize his achievements and marriage on canvas, the young, talented Jan Van Loos begins to paint. While the artist captures Sophia's likeness, a slow passion begins to burn between them. As the execution of the painting unfolds, ambitions, desires, and dreams breed a grand deception, and as the lies multiply, events move towards a thrilling and tragic climax.     ---from the publisher

Februrary title

You can pick up a copy of Exit West by Mohsin Hamid (copies will be available Wednesday 2/7) at the Reference Desk at the library.  The group will meet by the fireplace on Wednesday February 21st at 1pm. Join us!

Hamid's (The Reluctant Fundamentalist, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia) trim yet poignant fourth novel addresses similar themes as his previous work and presents a unique perspective on the global refugee crisis. In an unidentified country, young Saeed and burqa-wearing Nadia flee their home after Saeed's mother is killed by a stray bullet and their city turns increasingly dangerous due to worsening violent clashes between the government and guerillas. The couple joins other migrants traveling to safer havens via carefully guarded doors. Through one door, they wind up in a crowded camp on the Greek Island of Mykonos. Through another, they secure a private room in an abandoned London mansion populated mostly by displaced Nigerians. A third door takes them to California's Marin County. In each location, their relationship is by turns strengthened and tested by their struggle to find food, adequate shelter, and a sense of belonging among emigrant communities. Hamid's storytelling is stripped down, and the book's sweeping allegory is timely and resonant. Of particular importance is the contrast between the migrants' tenuous daily reality and that of the privileged second- or third-generation native population who'd prefer their new alien neighbors to simply disappear.  ---Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

January discussion postponed

THE JANUARY DISCUSSION OF KOOKOOLAND HAS BEEN POSTPONED UNTIL WEDNESDAY JANUARY 24TH AT 1PM.

January title

Pick up a copy of Kookooland by Gloria Norris at the library and join us on January 17th at 1pm by the fireplace. Should be an interesting read with Manchester as the setting.
Although many vibrant characters populate this chilling memoir, Norris' re-creation of her early 1960s nine-year-old self is a spot-on treat and a terror. Although she is determined not to be cowed or undermined by her often cruel, scheming, and drunken dad, Jimmy (like older half sister Virginia and nice mother Shirley), her telling ratchets up a spooky, excruciating tension. The racist, misogynistic Jimmy is a loaded gun, ready to fire at nearly anything for any reason. Yet it's his best friend, Hank, who blows, murdering his ex-wife and another man. Thus does young Norris' brightest spot and mentor her older friend Susan, Hank's daughter land in a mental hospital, over and over, while Hank goes free. Norris compellingly leads readers through her young life, alternately loving, fearing, and hating her father (the latter two with especially good reason), and it's a bravely faced and remembered coming-of-age that segues into Norris' amazing comeback as a filmmaker and writer who never forgets her mentor, Susan. A tumble through a tumultuous time, in which the heroine inexplicably, beautifully lands on her feet.--Kinney, Eloise Copyright 2015 Booklist

Hopkinton READS!


Hopkinton READS! 
One of Ours by Willa Cather
Join us on Thursday November 2 at 3pm or 6:30pm. 

About the book:
Willa Cather's Pulitzer Prize-winning narrative of the making of a young American soldier. Claude Wheeler, the sensitive, aspiring protagonist of this beautifully modulated novel, resembles the youngest son of a peculiarly American fairy tale. His fortune is ready-made for him, but he refuses to settle for it. Alienated from his crass father and pious mother, all but rejected by a wife who reserves her ardor for missionary work, and dissatisfied with farming, Claude is an idealist without an ideal to cling to. It is only when his country enters the First World War that Claude finds what he has been searching for all his life. In One of Ours Willa Cather explores the destiny of a grandchild of the pioneers, a young Nebraskan whose yearnings impel him toward a frontier bloodier and more distant than the one that vanished before his birth. In doing so, she creates a canny and extraordinarily vital portrait of an American psyche at once skeptical and romantic, restless and heroic.

About the discussion leader: 

Suzanne Brown just retired after teaching for 35 years at Dartmouth College. She is a writer of short stories as well as a literary critic; her articles have appeared in Modern Fiction Studies and other journals, while her stories have been published in Southern Review, Yale Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, Carolina Quarterly, Southwest Review, and other magazines.  She was a Fulbright scholar to Germany  and received an Individual Artist Fellowship from the NH Arts Council.  From 2009-2011 she was the project scholar for a grant through the Maine Humanities Council to expand discussions of literature and medicine for staff in Veterans Hospitals nationwide and edited the literary anthology Echoes of War.  She is currently facilitating book discussions with veterans in New Hampshire and Vermont.

Hopkinton READS! in November and December

“One of Ours” by Willa Cather (1923 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel about the making of an American soldier in WWI) and
“Silent Night: the Remarkable Christmas Truce of 1914” by Stanley Weintraub an event that still stands as the only time in history that peace spontaneously arose from the lower ranks in a major conflict.
Books available for sale or loan.

·         Book Discussion of “One of Ours” with Dartmouth Professor Suzanne Brown. (Thursday November 2nd at 3pm and 6:30pm)
·         Pizza and Movie “Joyeux Noel” (Thursday November 30th 6:30 pm) Award winning movie about 1914 Christmas Eve Truce. PG-13. 
Pre-Registration Required.
·         Book Discussion of “Silent Night: the Remarkable Christmas Truce of 1914.” With Dick Hesse, Professor Emeritus at the UNH School of Law.  (Wednesday December 6th at 1pm and 7pm)
These programs are part of the regional partnership of historical societies, museums and libraries.  Check out programs at OverThereOverHere.com.  
With Support from the Hopkinton Library Foundation and NH Humanities


October Title


In conjunction with Hopkinton READS and Over There, Over Here (a multi-group collaboration commemorating the 100th anniversary of the United States’ entry into World War I), the afternoon book group will be reading  A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway.  Pick up a copy of the book at the Reference Desk at the Library. We will meet on October 18th at 1pm by the fireplace. 
The best American novel to emerge from World War I, A Farewell to Arms is the unforgettable story of an American ambulance driver on the Italian front and his passion for a beautiful English nurse. Hemingway's frank portrayal of the love between Lieutenant Henry and Catherine Barkley, caught in the inexorable sweep of war, glows with an intensity unrivaled in modern literature, while his description of the German attack on Caporetto -- of lines of fired men marching in the rain, hungry, weary, and demoralized -- is one of the greatest moments in literary history. A story of love and pain, of loyalty and desertion, A Farewell to Arms, written when he was 30 years old, represents a new romanticism for Hemingway.       --Scribner Classics

September Title


 Stop by and pick up a copy of Life After Life by Kate Atkinson.  Discussion will be on Wednesday September 20th at 1pm. 



 What if you could live again and again, until you got it right? On a cold and snowy night in 1910, Ursula Todd is born to an English banker and his wife. She dies before she can draw her first breath. On that same cold and snowy night, Ursula Todd is born, lets out a lusty wail, and embarks upon a life that will be, to say the least, unusual. For as she grows, she also dies, repeatedly, in a variety of ways, while the young century marches on towards its second cataclysmic world war. Does Ursula's apparently infinite number of lives give her the power to save the world from its inevitable destiny? And if she can -- will she? Darkly comic, startlingly poignant, and utterly original -- this is Kate Atkinson at her absolute best.