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.

August Title

The Round House
by Louise Erdrich
Book Group Meeting
August 16th at 1pm
The Round House won the National Book Award for fiction. One of the most revered novelists of our time--a brilliant chronicler of Native-American life--Louise Erdrich returns to the territory of her bestselling, Pulitzer Prize finalist The Plague of Doves with The Round House, transporting readers to the Ojibwe reservation in North Dakota. It is an exquisitely told story of a boy on the cusp of manhood who seeks justice and understanding in the wake of a terrible crime that upends and forever transforms his family. Riveting and suspenseful, arguably the most accessible novel to date from the creator of Love Medicine, The Beet Queen, and The Bingo Palace, Erdrich's The Round House is a page-turning masterpiece of literary fiction--at once a powerful coming-of-age story, a mystery, and a tender, moving novel of family, history, and culture.

July title

The Marriage of Opposites
by Alice Hoffman
July 19th at 1pm by the fireplace.
Large print, audio and regular print available.

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Dovekeepers and The Museum of Extraordinary Things : a forbidden love story set on the tropical island of St. Thomas about the extraordinary woman who gave birth to painter Camille Pissarro-the Father of Impressionism. Growing up on idyllic St. Thomas in the early 1800s, Rachel dreams of life in faraway Paris. Rachel's mother, a pillar of their small refugee community of Jews who escaped the Inquisition, has never forgiven her daughter for being a difficult girl who refuses to live by the rules. Growing up, Rachel's salvation is their maid Adelle's belief in her strengths, and her deep, life-long friendship with Jestine, Adelle's daughter. But Rachel's life is not her own. She is married off to a widower with three children to save her father's business. When her husband dies suddenly and his handsome, much younger nephew, Frederic, arrives from France to settle the estate, Rachel seizes her own life story, beginning a defiant, passionate love affair that sparks a scandal that affects all of her family, including her favorite son, who will become one of the greatest artists of France. Building on the triumphs of The Dovekeepers and The Museum of Extraordinary Things , set in a world of almost unimaginable beauty, The Marriage of Opposites showcases the beloved, bestselling Alice Hoffman at the height of her considerable powers. Once forgotten to history, the marriage of Rachel and Frederic is a story that is as unforgettable as it is remarkable. ...from the publisher



June Title

Copies of Orphan Train are available to borrow from the library.  Join us on Wednesday 6/21 for a discussion of this fascinating book!
Between 1854 and 1929, so-called orphan trains ran regularly from the cities of the East Coast to the farmlands of the Midwest, carrying thousands of abandoned children whose fates would be determined by pure luck. Would they be adopted by a kind and loving family, or would they face a childhood and adolescence of hard labor and servitude? As a young Irish immigrant, Vivian Daly was one such child, sent by rail from New York City to an uncertain future a world away. Returning east later in life, Vivian leads a quiet, peaceful existence on the coast of Maine, the memories of her upbringing rendered a hazy blur. But in her attic, hidden in trunks, are vestiges of a turbulent past. Seventeen-year-old Molly Ayer knows that a community-service position helping an elderly widow clean out her attic is the only thing keeping her out of juvenile hall. But as Molly helps Vivian sort through her keepsakes and possessions, she discovers that she and Vivian aren't as different as they appear. A Penobscot Indian who has spent her youth in and out of foster homes, Molly is also an outsider being raised by strangers, and she, too, has unanswered questions about the past. Moving between contemporary Maine and Depression-era Minnesota, Orphan Train is a powerful tale of upheaval and resilience, second chances, and unexpected friendship.

April title

April's title is Commonwealth by Ann Patchett.
Copies of the book will be available at the library.
Join us on Wednesday April 26th at 1pm!


One Sunday afternoon in Southern California, Bert Cousins shows up at Franny Keating's christening party uninvited. Before evening falls, he has kissed Franny's mother, Beverly, thus setting in motion the dissolution of their marriages and the joining of two families. Spanning five decades, Commonwealth explores how this chance encounter reverberates through the lives of the four parents and six children involved. Spending summers together in Virginia, the Keating and Cousins children forge a lasting bond based on a shared disillusionment with their parents and the strange and genuine affection that grows between them. When in her twenties Franny begins an affair with the legendary author Leon Posen and tells him about her family, the story of her siblings is no longer hers to control. Their childhood becomes the basis for his wildly successful book, ultimately forcing them to come to terms with their losses, guilt, and the deep loyalty they feel for one another. Told with equal measures humor and heartbreak, Commonwealth is a meditation on inspiration, interpretation, and the ownership of stories, a brilliant and tender tale of the far-reaching ties of love and responsibility that bind us to one another.                                        --from annpatchett.com
 

March title

Our selection for March is A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles.  Come pick up a copy of the book at the Reference Desk at the library.  We'll meet on Wednesday March 22nd at 1pm by the fireplace.

A Gentleman in Moscow immerses us in another elegantly drawn era with the story of Count Alexander Rostov. When, in 1922, he is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, the count is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel's doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him a doorway into a much larger world of emotional discovery. Brimming with humor, a glittering cast of characters, and one beautifully rendered scene after another, this singular novel casts a spell as it relates the count's endeavor to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a man of purpose.

February title

The Library book group group is open to all! The book selection for February is Miss Jane by Brad Watson. Be sure to read it before the meeting on February 15th at 1pm! You can pick up a copy at the Reference Desk at the library.

Since his award-winning debut collection of stories, Last Days of the Dog-Men, Brad Watson has been expanding the literary traditions of the South, in work as melancholy, witty, strange, and lovely as any in America. Now, drawing on the story of his own great-aunt, Watson explores the life of Miss Jane Chisolm, born in rural, early-twentieth-century Mississippi with a genital birth defect that would stand in the way of the central "uses" for a woman in that time and place: sex and marriage. From the highly erotic world of nature around her to the hard tactile labor of farm life, from the country doctor who befriends her to the boy who loved but was forced to leave her, Miss Jane Chisolm and her world are anything but barren. The potency and implacable cruelty of nature, as well as its beauty, is a trademark of Watson's fiction. In Miss Jane, the author brings to life a hard, unromantic past that is tinged with the sadness of unattainable loves, yet shot through with a transcendent beauty. Jane Chisolm's irrepressible vitality and generous spirit give her the strength to live her life as she pleases in spite of the limitations that others, and her own body, would place on her. Free to satisfy only herself, she mesmerizes those around her, exerting an unearthly fascination that lives beyond her still.   --from the publisher

January title

The Soul of an Octopus
by Sy Montgomery 

Wednesday January 18 at 1pm
by the fireplace
Copies of the book available 
at the Reference Desk.
Join us! 
In this astonishing book from the author of the bestselling memoir The Good Good Pig, Sy Montgomery explores the emotional and physical world of the octopus-a surprisingly complex, intelligent, and spirited creature-and the remarkable connections it makes with humans. Sy Montgomery's popular 2011 Orion magazine piece, "Deep Intellect," about her friendship with a sensitive, sweet-natured octopus named Athena and the grief she felt at her death, went viral, indicating the widespread fascination with these mysterious, almost alien-like creatures. Since then Sy has practiced true immersion journalism, from New England aquarium tanks to the reefs of French Polynesia and the Gulf of Mexico, pursuing these wild, solitary shape-shifters. Octopuses have varied personalities and intelligence they show in myriad ways: endless trickery to escape enclosures and get food; jetting water playfully to bounce objects like balls; and evading caretakers by using a scoop net as a trampoline and running around the floor on eight arms. But with a beak like a parrot, venom like a snake, and a tongue covered with teeth, how can such a being know anything? And what sort of thoughts could it think? The intelligence of dogs, birds, and chimpanzees was only recently accepted by scientists, who now are establishing the intelligence of the octopus, watching them solve problems and deciphering the meaning of their color-changing camouflage techniques. Montgomery chronicles this growing appreciation of the octopus, but also tells a love story. By turns funny, entertaining, touching, and profound, The Soul of an Octopus reveals what octopuses can teach us about consciousness and the meeting of two very different minds.


November title

 November's title is Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
Pick up a copy of the book at the Reference Desk at the library.
Discussion will take place on Wednesday November 16th at 1pm.

One of The New York Times Book Review's Ten Best Books of the Year From the award-winning author of Half of a Yellow Sun, a dazzling new novel: a story of love and race centered around a young man and woman from Nigeria who face difficult choices and challenges in the countries they come to call home. As teenagers in a Lagos secondary school, Ifemelu and Obinze fall in love. Their Nigeria is under military dictatorship, and people are leaving the country if they can. Ifemelu--beautiful, self-assured--departs for America to study. She suffers defeats and triumphs, finds and loses relationships and friendships, all the while feeling the weight of something she never thought of back home: race. Obinze--the quiet, thoughtful son of a professor--had hoped to join her, but post-9/11 America will not let him in, and he plunges into a dangerous, undocumented life in London. Years later, Obinze is a wealthy man in a newly democratic Nigeria, while Ifemelu has achieved success as a writer of an eye-opening blog about race in America. But when Ifemelu returns to Nigeria, and she and Obinze reignite their shared passion--for their homeland and for each other--they will face the toughest decisions of their lives. Fearless, gripping, at once darkly funny and tender, spanning three continents and numerous lives, Americanah is a richly told story set in today's globalized world: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's most powerful and astonishing novel yet.

October title

Pick up a copy of The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman at the Reference Desk at the library. The group will meet by the fireplace at 1pm on Wednesday October 19th. Join us!

 Sussex, England. A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. Although the house he lived in is long gone, he is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl, Lettie Hempstock, and her mother and grandmother. He hasn't thought of Lettie in decades, and yet as he sits by the pond (a pond that she'd claimed was an ocean) behind the ramshackle old farmhouse, the unremembered past comes flooding back. And it is a past too strange, too frightening, too dangerous to have happened to anyone, let alone a small boy.

Forty years earlier, a man committed suicide in a stolen car at this farm at the end of the road. Like a fuse on a firework, his death lit a touchpaper and resonated in unimaginable ways. The darkness was unleashed, something scary and thoroughly incomprehensible to a little boy. And Lettie—magical, comforting, wise beyond her years—promised to protect him, no matter what.

A groundbreaking work from a master, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human, and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out. It is a stirring, terrifying, and elegiac fable as delicate as a butterfly's wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark.
--from goodreads.com
goodreads Choice Winner 2013

September title

The years-long New York Times bestseller soon to be a major motion picture from Spielberg's Dreamworks that is "irresistible...seductive...with a high concept plot that keeps you riveted from the first page" ( O, The Oprah Magazine ). After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, nearly half a day's journey from the coast. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby's cries on the wind. A boat has washed up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby. Tom, who keeps meticulous records and whose moral principles have withstood a horrific war, wants to report the man and infant immediately. But Isabel insists the baby is a "gift from God," and against Tom's judgment, they claim her as their own and name her Lucy. When she is two, Tom and Isabel return to the mainland and are reminded that there are other people in the world. Their choice has devastated one of them.

Copies of the book are available at the Reference Desk.  We'll discuss the book on Wednesday September 21st at 1pm. Join us!