Events in the next 6 months

Title:Book Discussion: Orange is the New Black
Date:Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Time:1:00pm - 2:00pm
Location:Off Site
Categories:Book Discussions, HHR calendar, Hamptons + Holyoke Read
Description:

At Edwards Public Library, Southampton.

Title:Book Discussion: Holes
Date:Wednesday, March 29, 2017
Time:3:30pm - 4:30pm
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, HHR calendar, Hamptons + Holyoke Read, One-Time Events, Teen Events
Description:

A discussion of the young adult novel Holes by Louis Sachar. Come for a chat and a snack!

Title:Book Discussion & Teen Workshop: OITNB and Race To Incarcerate
Date:Wednesday, March 29, 2017
Time:6:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Off Site
Categories:Book Discussions, HHR calendar, Hamptons + Holyoke Read, Teen Events
Description:

At Holyoke Public Library.

Book discussion and workshop on Orange Is The New Black and the graphic novel Race To Incarcerate.

Group activity with teens based on Race to Incarcerate

The graphic novel focuses on mass incarceration and the impact on communities of color. We will read excerpts of the graphic novel and create our own "zines" surrounding themes of juvenile justice, mass incarceration, and the school to prison pipeline. Cheryl O'Connell from Wistariahurst will be co-facilitating this group.

Title:Far Out Film Discussion : El Topo
Date:Wednesday, March 29, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 9:00pm
Presenter:Forbes Library
Location:Community Room
Categories:Adult Events, Book Discussions, One-Time Events, Recurring Events
Description:

This new program is formatted like a book club: check out the film, watch it at home, and attend the meeting to discuss it. (We will not be screening the film at the program.)

Our next movie is El Topo- written, directed and starring Alejandro Jodorowsky. Copies of the film are available in the Reference Dept. and the Arts and Music Dept.

Join us in the Community Room on Wednesday March 29th at 7:00pm to discuss the film!

Title:Paradise City Readers: Clear Springs
Date:Monday, April 3, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Forbes Library
Location:Bak Study Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Station ElevenRespectful, queer/LGBT-friendly, easy-going bunch who want an excuse to get out more and talk about books. And have some snacks. Meetings take place on the first Monday of the month at 7 p.m.

This month we'll be reading Clear Springs by Bobbie Ann Mason

Book Summary:

People love and remember the novels of Bobbie Ann Mason because they ring so true. This dazzling memoir saga of three generations, their aspirations, their conflicts, and the ties that bound them to one another. Spanning decades, Clear Springs gracefully weaves together the stories of Mason's grandparents, parents, and her won generation. The narrative moves from the sober industriousness of a Kentucky farm to the hippie lifestyle of the countercultural 1960s; from a New York fan magazine to the shock-therapy ward of a mental institution; from a county poorhouse to the set of a Hollywood movie; from a small rustic schoolhouse to glittering pop music concerts. In the process of recounting her own odyssey--the story of a misfit girl who dreamed of distant places--Mason depicts the changes that have come to family, to women, and to heartland America in the twentieth century. Ultimately, Clear Springs is a heartfelt portrait of an extended family, and a profound affirmation of the importance of family love.

We also have a google group, where people post info about the books and sometimes social events. You can find us at http://groups.google.com/group/westernmassbookgroup or write to westernmassbookgroup@googlegroups.com Copies of the discussion books are available to check out at the main desk most months unless the title is in too high demand.

Title:Science Fiction and Fantasy Discussion: A Wrinkle In Time
Date:Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L'Engle

It was a dark and stormy night; Meg Murry, her small brother Charles Wallace, and her mother had come down to the kitchen for a midnight snack when they were upset by the arrival of a most disturbing stranger.

"Wild nights are my glory," the unearthly stranger told them. "I just got caught in a downdraft and blown off course. Let me sit down for a moment, and then I'll be on my way. Speaking of ways, by the way, there is such a thing as a tesseract."

A tesseract (in case the reader doesn't know) is a wrinkle in time. To tell more would rob the reader of the enjoyment of Miss L'Engle's unusual book. A Wrinkle in Time, winner of the Newbery Medal in 1963, is the story of the adventures in space and time of Meg, Charles Wallace, and Calvin O'Keefe (athlete, student, and one of the most popular boys in high school). They are in search of Meg's father, a scientist who disappeared while engaged in secret work for the government on the tesseract problem.

Anyone interested in Science Fiction or Fantasy is welcome. Although we focus on this month’s selection, we will discuss any topics related to Science Fiction or Fantasy, books or movies. Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out.

Title:Second Monday Book Discussion: Snowdrops
Date:Monday, April 10, 2017
Time:6:30pm - 8:30pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

We'll be reading Snowdrops by A. D. Miller

A riveting story of erotic obsession, self-deception and moral free-fall, set in post-communist Moscow.


Nick Platt is a lawyer working in Moscow in the early 2000s--a city of hedonism and desperation, magical hideaways and debauched nightclubs, kindness and corruption. Nick doesn't ask too many questions about the shady deals he works on: he's too busy enjoying the exotic, sinful nightlife. On a sultry day in September, Nick rescues two willowy sisters, Masha and Katya, from a would-be purse snatcher, and soon the three of them are cruising Moscow's seamy glamour spots. As winter descends on the decadent city, Nick falls for the seductive Masha, but soon finds he is falling away from himself--and at the centre of a tale of deception and betrayal, in a place where dark secrets, and long hidden corpses, come to light when the deep snows finally thaw.

Literary minded discussion. Open to new members.

Title:Book Discussion: Orange is the New Black
Date:Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Time:6:30pm - 8:30pm
Location:Off Site
Categories:Book Discussions, HHR calendar, Hamptons + Holyoke Read
Description:

At Westhampton Public Library.

Title:Book Discussion: Orange is the New Black
Date:Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Time:1:00pm - 3:00pm
Location:Off Site
Categories:Book Discussions, HHR calendar, Hamptons + Holyoke Read
Description:

At Emily Williston Memorial Library, Easthampton.

Title:Italian Crime Fiction Group: Excursion to Tindari
Date:Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Time:3:00pm - 5:00pm
Presenter:Dick Abrams
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Angels and Demons jacketThis month we'll be reading Excursion to Tindari by Andrea Camilleri

A phone call lands Montalbano in the middle of the case of the dead man at Via Cavour 44. Just one bullet in the middle of the forehead killed young Emanuele 'Nenè' Sanfilippo, and since the captain of the Flying Squad and his second in command were laid up (one with dysentery after a visit to Beirut and the other in the hospital in New York after a mugging), Montalbano is told that the case is his. While he's just getting started on that case, a man shows up at the Vigàta station to ask for help with his missing parents, Mr. and Mrs. Griffo, and permission to break down the door of their apartment. Montalbano puts Gallo on the case until he finds out that the missing parents lived in the same apartment building as the dead Sanfilippo, then decides to handle it himself. After a spot on the television news regarding their disappearance brings forth several witnesses, the police discover that the Griffos were last seen on a bus tour to the Sanctuary of the Madonna of Tindari. After that, they might has well have dropped off the face of the Earth. Salvo just knows intuitively that the two cases must be connected -- but how? As he's delving into both investigations, he receives a call that he can't refuse: Don Balduccio Sinagra, the head of one of the two major crime families, wants him to stop by for a visit. And, on the personal front, Mimi Augello has just informed Montalbano that he's met a woman and is planning on marrying her, and Montalbano realizes he may be losing a good officer and a good friend. Mimi also informs him that the Commissioner, Bonetti-Alderighi, is happy about Mimi's plans, saying that it was "high time that the band of Mafiosi at Vigàta Police...started to break up." And of course, let's not forget Livia, who is still depressed over events from book four, Voice of the Violin. But his keen detective work, some subterfuge, and the amazing, mouth-watering Italian dishes he loves help to see him through once more.

 

Are you frostbitten from reading all that Scandinavian noir? Put a little Mediterranean in your life--join our moderator Dick Abrams and explore the fascinating subject of Italian Crime Fiction. 

Meets every second Wednesday of the month at 3pm in the Community Room. 

Forbes Library is committed to providing universal access to all of our events. For questions about accessibility or to request accommodations please contact Lisa Downing at 413-587-1017 or info@forbeslibrary.org. Please let us know at least two weeks before the event if you require any special accommodations.

Title:Nature and Environment Book Club: Countdown
Date:Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's book discussion will be about Countdown by Alan Weisman.

A powerful investigation into the chances for humanity's future.

With a million more of us every 4 1/2 days on a planet that's not getting any bigger, and with our exhaust overheating the atmosphere and altering the chemistry of the oceans, prospects for a sustainable human future seem ever more in doubt. For this long awaited book, Weisman traveled to more than 20 countries to ask what experts agreed were probably the most important questions on Earth--and also the hardest: How many humans can the planet hold without capsizing? How robust must the Earth's ecosystem be to assure our continued existence? Can we know which other species are essential to our survival? And, how might we actually arrive at a stable, optimum population, and design an economy to allow genuine prosperity without endless growth?

Weisman visits an extraordinary range of the world's cultures, religions, nationalities, tribes, and political systems to learn what in their beliefs, histories, liturgies, or current circumstances might suggest that sometimes it's in their own best interest to limit their growth. The result is a landmark work of reporting: devastating, urgent, and, ultimately, deeply hopeful.

By vividly detailing the burgeoning effects of our cumulative presence, Countdown reveals what may be the fastest, most acceptable, practical, and affordable way of returning our planet and our presence on it to balance. Weisman again shows that he is one of the most provocative journalists at work today, with a book whose message is so compelling that it will change how we see our lives and our destiny.

The Nature and Environment Book Club is devoted to the best of nature writing and environmental reporting with discussions on the second Wednesday of each month. Readers and writers interested in books ranging from such classics as Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek to topical reportage like Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction will want to join the conversation.

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the library. 

Title:Book Discussion: Orange is the New Black
Date:Thursday, April 20, 2017
Time:6:30pm - 8:00pm
Location:Off Site
Categories:Book Discussions, HHR calendar, Hamptons + Holyoke Read
Description:

At Lilly Library, Florence.

Title:Afternoon Book Discussion: Circling the Sun
Date:Friday, April 21, 2017
Time:1:00pm - 2:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's discussion will be about

Circling the Sun by Paula McLain

 

Circling the Sun brings to life a fearless and captivating woman—Beryl Markham, a record-setting aviator caught up in a passionate love triangle with safari hunter Denys Finch Hatton and Karen Blixen, who as Isak Dinesen wrote the classic memoir Out of Africa.

Brought to Kenya from England as a child and then abandoned by her mother, Beryl is raised by both her father and the native Kipsigis tribe who share his estate. Her unconventional upbringing transforms Beryl into a bold young woman with a fierce love of all things wild and an inherent understanding of nature’s delicate balance. But even the wild child must grow up, and when everything Beryl knows and trusts dissolves, she is catapulted into a string of disastrous relationships.

Beryl forges her own path as a horse trainer, and her uncommon style attracts the eye of the Happy Valley set, a decadent, bohemian community of European expats who also live and love by their own set of rules. But it’s the ruggedly charismatic Denys Finch Hatton who ultimately helps Beryl navigate the uncharted territory of her own heart. The intensity of their love reveals Beryl’s truest self and her fate: to fly.

Set against the majestic landscape of early-twentieth-century Africa, McLain’s powerful tale reveals the extraordinary adventures of a woman before her time, the exhilaration of freedom and its cost, and the tenacity of the human spirit.

The Afternoon Book Discussion group meets on the 3rd Friday of the month in the Watson Room for a casual hour long discussion. The reading selections are mostly fiction choices with a sprinkling of non-fiction, young adult, and classics with an emphasis on books appealing to an ecclectic taste as well as those with interesting points of discussion.  Pre-registration is not required and drop-ins are welcome. Tea and light refreshments are served. 

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the circulation desk. 

Title:Great Books Discussion: Beloved
Date:Monday, April 24, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Hilary Caws-Elwitt
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

 Beloved by Toni Morrison

Staring unflinchingly into the abyss of slavery, this spellbinding novel transforms history into a story as powerful as Exodus and as intimate as a lullaby. Sethe, its protagonist, was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. She has too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. And Sethe’s new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved. Filled with bitter poetry and suspense as taut as a rope, Beloved is a towering achievement.

 

About Great Books Discussion Style

The Great Books discussion is structured so that the evening’s selected reading is discussed in a think tank environment with the intention of gaining insight from other readers that one would not have by reading alone. The seminar facilitator asks questions of the participants about the reading selection and helps the discussion stay focused. Our main goal is to have fun and take many interpretations from the group in order to enjoy a greater understanding of a selected reading.

Discussions are open to everyone and free of charge.  For a list of past and future discussion books and to contact the group visit, http://mail.salticid.com/mailman/listinfo/forbes_great_books_salticid.com.

About the facilitator:

Hilary Caws-Elwitt has her BA in English & American Literature from Harvard, MLS from University of Arizona, and ran Susquehanna County Reads for its first 4 years. But mostly she loves reading and discussing the books!

Title:Mystery Book Discussion: Before the Fall
Date:Monday, April 24, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

This month we'll be discussing Before the Fall by Noah Hawley 

On a foggy summer night, eleven people--ten privileged, one down-on-his-luck painter--depart Martha's Vineyard on a private jet headed for New York. Sixteen minutes later, the unthinkable happens: the plane plunges into the ocean. The only survivors are Scott Burroughs--the painter--and a four-year-old boy, who is now the last remaining member of an immensely wealthy and powerful media mogul's family.

With chapters weaving between the aftermath of the crash and the backstories of the passengers and crew members--including a Wall Street titan and his wife, a Texan-born party boy just in from London, a young woman questioning her path in life, and a career pilot--the mystery surrounding the tragedy heightens. As the passengers' intrigues unravel, odd coincidences point to a conspiracy. Was it merely by dumb chance that so many influential people perished? Or was something far more sinister at work? Events soon threaten to spiral out of control in an escalating storm of media outrage and accusations. And while Scott struggles to cope with fame that borders on notoriety, the authorities scramble to salvage the truth from the wreckage.

Amid pulse-quickening suspense, the fragile relationship between Scott and the young boy glows at the heart of this stunning novel, raising questions of fate, human nature, and the inextricable ties that bind us together.

The Mystery Book Discussion Group meets monthly at the library for a casual discussion. New members are always welcome. Pick up a copy of this month's discussion book at the library.
Title:Paradise City Readers: Oryx and Crake
Date:Monday, May 1, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Forbes Library
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Station ElevenRespectful, queer/LGBT-friendly, easy-going bunch who want an excuse to get out more and talk about books. And have some snacks. Meetings take place on the first Monday of the month at 7 p.m.

This month we'll be reading Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

Book Summary:

Oryx and Crake is at once an unforgettable love story and a compelling vision of the future. Snowman, known as Jimmy before mankind was overwhelmed by a plague, is struggling to survive in a world where he may be the last human, and mourning the loss of his best friend, Crake, and the beautiful and elusive Oryx whom they both loved. In search of answers, Snowman embarks on a journey–with the help of the green-eyed Children of Crake–through the lush wilderness that was so recently a great city, until powerful corporations took mankind on an uncontrolled genetic engineering ride. Margaret Atwood projects us into a near future that is both all too familiar and beyond our imagining.

We also have a google group, where people post info about the books and sometimes social events. You can find us at http://groups.google.com/group/westernmassbookgroup or write to westernmassbookgroup@googlegroups.com Copies of the discussion books are available to check out at the main desk most months unless the title is in too high demand.

Title:Science Fiction and Fantasy Discussion: Rendezvous With Rama
Date:Wednesday, May 3, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Rendezvous With Rama by Arthur C. Clarke

At first, only a few things are known about the celestial object that astronomers dub Rama. It is huge, weighing more than ten trillion tons. And it is hurtling through the solar system at inconceivable speed. Then a space probe confirms the unthinkable: Rama is no natural object. It is, incredible, an interstellar spacecraft. Space explorers and planet-bound scientists alike prepare for mankind's first encounter with alien intelligence. It will kindle their wildest dreams... and fan their darkest fears. For no one knows who the Ramans are or why they have come. And now the moment of rendezvous awaits -- just behind a Raman airlock door.

Anyone interested in Science Fiction or Fantasy is welcome. Although we focus on this month’s selection, we will discuss any topics related to Science Fiction or Fantasy, books or movies. Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out.

Title:Second Monday Book Discussion: The Museum of Extraordinary Things
Date:Monday, May 8, 2017
Time:6:30pm - 8:30pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

We'll be reading The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman

Coralie Sardie is the daughter of the sinister impresario behind The Museum of Extraordinary Things, a Coney Island freak show that thrills the masses. An exceptional swimmer, Coralie appears as the Mermaid in her father’s “museum,” alongside performers like the Wolfman and the Butterfly Girl. One night Coralie stumbles upon a striking young man taking pictures of moonlit trees in the woods off the Hudson River.

The dashing photographer is Eddie Cohen, a Russian immigrant who has run away from his community and his job as a tailor’s apprentice. When Eddie photographs the infamous Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, he becomes embroiled in the mystery behind a young woman’s disappearance. And he ignites the heart of Coralie.

Alice Hoffman weaves her trademark magic, romance, and masterful storytelling to unite Coralie and Eddie in a tender and moving story of young love in tumultuous times.

Literary minded discussion. Open to new members.

Title:Far Out Film Discussion : Eraserhead
Date:Monday, May 8, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 9:00pm
Presenter:Forbes Library
Location:Community Room
Categories:Adult Events, Book Discussions, One-Time Events, Recurring Events
Description:
This new program is formatted like a book club: check out the film, watch it at home, and attend the meeting to discuss it. (We will not be screening the film at the program.)
Our next movie is Eraserhead - a black and white surrealist film from 1977 which was written, produced and directed by David Lynch.
Copies of the film will be available in the Reference Dept. and the Arts and Music Dept.
Join us in the Community Room on Monday May 8th at 7:00pm to discuss the film!
Title:Italian Crime Fiction Group: The Sicilian Girl
Date:Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Time:3:00pm - 5:00pm
Presenter:Dick Abrams
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Angels and Demons jacketThis month we'll be watching The Sicilian Girl

“Omerta” is an Italian term for the Mafia’s code of silence, but the word “code” isn’t sufficient in describing what it means, since it isn’t something collectively agreed upon so much as brutally enforced by intimidation and murder. It’s little wonder that Rita Atria, a 17-year-old girl who tried to take on the Sicilian mob single-handedly, was dismissed as “crazy,” possessed by a thirst for revenge that clouded her better judgment. A solid, no-frills dramatization of her story, The Sicilian Girl underlines the courage of doing the right thing, which is a kind of madness, too, given the mob’s power and omnipresence. The Sicilian Girl opens in 1985, when Rita (Veronica D’Agostino) was a young girl who idolized her father (Marcello Mazzarella), a man highly respected in the small seaside community they called home. What she didn’t know—or choose to acknowledge—at the time was that the respect reflected her father’s own entrenchment in Mafia dealings, though his refusal to participate in the drug trade ultimately got him killed. When Rita’s brother, also a mob member, was killed six years later, she decided to turn over her testimony and diaries to fierce anti-mob judge Paolo Borsellino (Gérard Jugnot), who kept her in protective custody. Director Marco Amenta, who previously recounted Atria’s story in the 2006 documentary One Girl Against The Mafia: Diary Of A Sicilian Rebel, articulates the stakes and implications of her case clearly and establishes a tenuous but ultimately touching bond between Rita and the judge. Beyond her immediate security concerns, the film exposes an even deeper stress in her tortured relationship to family, both in the necessary difficulty of Rita recognizing her father and brother as killers, and her mother’s bitter disapproval. She was simultaneously a pariah and a marked woman, and Amenta respectfully honors her quixotic, deeply lonely quest for justice.

 

Are you frostbitten from reading all that Scandinavian noir? Put a little Mediterranean in your life--join our moderator Dick Abrams and explore the fascinating subject of Italian Crime Fiction. 

Meets every second Wednesday of the month at 3pm in the Community Room. 

Forbes Library is committed to providing universal access to all of our events. For questions about accessibility or to request accommodations please contact Lisa Downing at 413-587-1017 or info@forbeslibrary.org. Please let us know at least two weeks before the event if you require any special accommodations.

Title:Nature and Environment Book Club: Cosmos
Date:Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's book discussion will be about Cosmos by Carl Sagan.

 

The story of fifteen billion years of cosmic evolution transforming matter and life into consciousness, of how science and civilization grew up together, and of the forces and individuals who helped shape modern science. A story told with Carl Sagan’s remarkable ability to make scientific ideas both comprehensible and exciting.

 

 

The Nature and Environment Book Club is devoted to the best of nature writing and environmental reporting with discussions on the second Wednesday of each month. Readers and writers interested in books ranging from such classics as Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek to topical reportage like Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction will want to join the conversation.

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the library. 

Title:Great Books Discussion: The Killer Angels
Date:Monday, May 15, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Hilary Caws-Elwitt
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

 The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara

In the four most bloody and courageous days of our nation’s history, two armies fought for two conflicting dreams. One dreamed of freedom, the other of a way of life. Far more than rifles and bullets were carried into battle. There were memories. There were promises. There was love. And far more than men fell on those Pennsylvania fields. Bright futures, untested innocence, and pristine beauty were also the casualties of war. Michael Shaara’s Pulitzer Prize–winning masterpiece is unique, sweeping, unforgettable—the dramatic story of the battleground for America’s destiny.

 

About Great Books Discussion Style

The Great Books discussion is structured so that the evening’s selected reading is discussed in a think tank environment with the intention of gaining insight from other readers that one would not have by reading alone. The seminar facilitator asks questions of the participants about the reading selection and helps the discussion stay focused. Our main goal is to have fun and take many interpretations from the group in order to enjoy a greater understanding of a selected reading.

Discussions are open to everyone and free of charge.  For a list of past and future discussion books and to contact the group visit, http://mail.salticid.com/mailman/listinfo/forbes_great_books_salticid.com.

About the facilitator:

Hilary Caws-Elwitt has her BA in English & American Literature from Harvard, MLS from University of Arizona, and ran Susquehanna County Reads for its first 4 years. But mostly she loves reading and discussing the books!

Title:Afternoon Book Discussion: We Were Brothers
Date:Friday, May 19, 2017
Time:1:00pm - 2:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's discussion will be about

We Were Brothers by Barry Moser

 

Brothers Barry and Tommy Moser were born of the same parents in Chattanooga, Tennessee, slept in the same bedroom, went to the same school, and were both poisoned by their family’s deep racism and anti-Semitism. But as they grew older, their perspectives and their paths grew further and further apart. Barry left Chattanooga for New England and a life in the arts; Tommy stayed put and became a mortgage banker. From attitudes about race, to food, politics, and money, the brothers began to think so differently that they could no longer find common ground. For nearly forty years, there was more strife between them than affection. 

After one particularly fractious conversation when Barry was in his late fifties and Tommy was in his early sixties, their fragile relationship fell apart. With the raw emotions that so often surface when we talk of our siblings, Barry recalls how they were finally able to traverse that great divide and reconcile their troubled brotherhood before it was too late.

We Were Brothers, written and illustrated by preeminent artist Barry Moser, is a powerful story of reunion told with candor and regret that captures the essence of sibling relationships, with all their complexities, contradictions, and mixed blessings.

The Afternoon Book Discussion group meets on the 3rd Friday of the month in the Watson Room for a casual hour long discussion. The reading selections are mostly fiction choices with a sprinkling of non-fiction, young adult, and classics with an emphasis on books appealing to an ecclectic taste as well as those with interesting points of discussion.  Pre-registration is not required and drop-ins are welcome. Tea and light refreshments are served. 

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the circulation desk. 

Title:Paradise City Readers: The Vegetarian
Date:Monday, June 5, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Forbes Library
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Station ElevenRespectful, queer/LGBT-friendly, easy-going bunch who want an excuse to get out more and talk about books. And have some snacks. Meetings take place on the first Monday of the month at 7 p.m.

This month we'll be reading The Vegetarian by Kang Han

Book Summary:

A beautiful, unsettling novel about rebellion and taboo, violence and eroticism, and the twisting metamorphosis of a soul
 
Before the nightmares began, Yeong-hye and her husband lived an ordinary, controlled life. But the dreams—invasive images of blood and brutality—torture her, driving Yeong-hye to purge her mind and renounce eating meat altogether. It’s a small act of independence, but it interrupts her marriage and sets into motion an increasingly grotesque chain of events at home. As her husband, her brother-in-law and sister each fight to reassert their control, Yeong-hye obsessively defends the choice that’s become sacred to her. Soon their attempts turn desperate, subjecting first her mind, and then her body, to ever more intrusive and perverse violations, sending Yeong-hye spiraling into a dangerous, bizarre estrangement, not only from those closest to her, but also from herself. 
 
Celebrated by critics around the world, The Vegetarian is a darkly allegorical, Kafka-esque tale of power, obsession, and one woman’s struggle to break free from the violence both without and within her.

We also have a google group, where people post info about the books and sometimes social events. You can find us at http://groups.google.com/group/westernmassbookgroup or write to westernmassbookgroup@googlegroups.com Copies of the discussion books are available to check out at the main desk most months unless the title is in too high demand.

Title:Science Fiction and Fantasy Discussion: Beggars in Spain
Date:Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Beggars In Spain by Nancy Kress

Leisha Camden is a genetically engineered 'Sleepless.' Her ability to stay awake all the time has not only made her more productive, but the genetic modifications have also given the 'Sleepless' a higher IQ and may even make them immortal. Are they the future of humanity? Or will the small community of 'sleepless' be hunted down as freaks by a world that has grown wary of its newest creation?

Anyone interested in Science Fiction or Fantasy is welcome. Although we focus on this month’s selection, we will discuss any topics related to Science Fiction or Fantasy, books or movies. Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out.

Title:Second Monday Book Discussion: Wolf Totem
Date:Monday, June 12, 2017
Time:6:30pm - 8:30pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

We'll be reading Wolf Totem by Jiang Rong

It is the final 1960s heyday for the people of the Inner Mongolian grasslands―a time when an age-old balance based on culture and tradition was maintained between the nomads, their livestock, and the wild wolves who roamed the plains.

Beijing intellectual Chen Zhen volunteers to live in a remote nomadic settlement on the border of Inner and Outer Mongolia. There, he discovers life of apparent idyllic simplicity based on an eternal struggle between the wolves and the humans in their fight to survive. Chen learns about the rich spiritual relationship, and respect that only equals can feel, that exists between these adversaries.

After many years spent living in solitude, Chen's peace of mind is shattered with the arrival of his kinfolk―Han Chinese, sent from the cities to bring modernity and productivity to the remote grasslands. Once the careful balance between the wolves and humans is disrupted, however, culture and tradition are damaged, and the environment suffers.

Literary minded discussion. Open to new members.

Title:Nature and Environment Book Club: The Bees
Date:Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's book discussion will be about The Bees by Laline Paull.

 

Flora 717 is a sanitation worker, a member of the lowest caste in her orchard hive where work and sacrifice are the highest virtues and worship of the beloved Queen the only religion. But Flora is not like other bees. With circumstances threatening the hive’s survival, her curiosity is regarded as a dangerous flaw but her courage and strength are an asset. She is allowed to feed the newborns in the royal nursery and then to become a forager, flying alone and free to collect pollen. She also finds her way into the Queen’s inner sanctum, where she discovers mysteries about the hive that are both profound and ominous.

But when Flora breaks the most sacred law of all—daring to challenge the Queen’s fertility—enemies abound, from the fearsome fertility police who enforce the strict social hierarchy to the high priestesses jealously wedded to power. Her deepest instincts to serve and sacrifice are now overshadowed by an even deeper desire, a fierce maternal love that will bring her into conflict with her conscience, her heart, her society—and lead her to unthinkable deeds.

Thrilling, suspenseful and spectacularly imaginative, The Bees gives us a dazzling young heroine and will change forever the way you look at the world outside your window.

 

The Nature and Environment Book Club is devoted to the best of nature writing and environmental reporting with discussions on the second Wednesday of each month. Readers and writers interested in books ranging from such classics as Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek to topical reportage like Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction will want to join the conversation.

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the library. 

Title:Afternoon Book Discussion: Uprooted
Date:Friday, June 16, 2017
Time:1:00pm - 2:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's discussion will be about

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

 

“Our Dragon doesn’t eat the girls he takes, no matter what stories they tell outside our valley. We hear them sometimes, from travelers passing through. They talk as though we were doing human sacrifice, and he were a real dragon. Of course that’s not true: he may be a wizard and immortal, but he’s still a man, and our fathers would band together and kill him if he wanted to eat one of us every ten years. He protects us against the Wood, and we’re grateful, but not that grateful.”

Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life.

Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood.

The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows—everyone knows—that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn’t, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her.

But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose.

The Afternoon Book Discussion group meets on the 3rd Friday of the month in the Watson Room for a casual hour long discussion. The reading selections are mostly fiction choices with a sprinkling of non-fiction, young adult, and classics with an emphasis on books appealing to an ecclectic taste as well as those with interesting points of discussion.  Pre-registration is not required and drop-ins are welcome. Tea and light refreshments are served. 

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the circulation desk. 

Title:Great Books Discussion: Wuthering Heights
Date:Monday, June 19, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Hilary Caws-Elwitt
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

 Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

A wild, passionate story of the intense and almost demonic love between Catherine Earnshaw and Heathcliff, a foundling adopted by Catherine's father. After Mr Earnshaw's death, Heathcliff is bullied and humiliated by Catherine's brother Hindley and wrongly believing that his love for Catherine is not reciprocated, leaves Wuthering Heights, only to return years later as a wealthy and polished man. He proceeds to exact a terrible revenge for his former miseries. The action of the story is chaotic and unremittingly violent, but the accomplished handling of a complex structure, the evocative descriptions of the lonely moorland setting and the poetic grandeur of vision combine to make this unique novel a masterpiece of English literature.

 

About Great Books Discussion Style

The Great Books discussion is structured so that the evening’s selected reading is discussed in a think tank environment with the intention of gaining insight from other readers that one would not have by reading alone. The seminar facilitator asks questions of the participants about the reading selection and helps the discussion stay focused. Our main goal is to have fun and take many interpretations from the group in order to enjoy a greater understanding of a selected reading.

Discussions are open to everyone and free of charge.  For a list of past and future discussion books and to contact the group visit, http://mail.salticid.com/mailman/listinfo/forbes_great_books_salticid.com.

About the facilitator:

Hilary Caws-Elwitt has her BA in English & American Literature from Harvard, MLS from University of Arizona, and ran Susquehanna County Reads for its first 4 years. But mostly she loves reading and discussing the books!

Title:Science Fiction and Fantasy Discussion: Feed
Date:Wednesday, July 5, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Feed by Mira Grant

The year was 2014. We had cured cancer. We had beat the common cold. But in doing so we created something new, something terrible that no one could stop. The infection spread, virus blocks taking over bodies and minds with one, unstoppable command: FEED.

Now, twenty years after the Rising, Georgia and Shaun Mason are on the trail of the biggest story of their lives-the dark conspiracy behind the infected. The truth will out, even if it kills them.

Anyone interested in Science Fiction or Fantasy is welcome. Although we focus on this month’s selection, we will discuss any topics related to Science Fiction or Fantasy, books or movies. Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out.

Title:Second Monday Book Discussion: The Noise of Time
Date:Monday, July 10, 2017
Time:6:30pm - 8:30pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

We'll be reading The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes


In 1936, Shostakovich, just thirty, fears for his livelihood and his life. Stalin, hitherto a distant figure, has taken a sudden interest in his work and denounced his latest opera. Now, certain he will be exiled to Siberia (or, more likely, executed on the spot), Shostakovich reflects on his predicament, his personal history, his parents, various women and wives, his children—and all who are still alive themselves hang in the balance of his fate. And though a stroke of luck prevents him from becoming yet another casualty of the Great Terror, for decades to come he will be held fast under the thumb of despotism: made to represent Soviet values at a cultural conference in New York City, forced into joining the Party and compelled, constantly, to weigh appeasing those in power against the integrity of his music. Barnes elegantly guides us through the trajectory of Shostakovich’s career, at the same time illuminating the tumultuous evolution of the Soviet Union. The result is both a stunning portrait of a relentlessly fascinating man and a brilliant exploration of the meaning of art and its place in society.

Literary minded discussion. Open to new members.

Title:Nature and Environment Book Club: The End of Night
Date:Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Adult Events, Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's book discussion will be about The End of Night by Paul Bogard

A brilliantly starry night is one of nature's most thrilling wonders. Yet in our world of nights as bright as day, most of us no longer experience true darkness. Eight out of ten Americans born today won't ever live where they can see the Milky Way. And exposure to artificial light at night has been cited as a factor in health concerns ranging from poor sleep to cancer.

In his gorgeous debut, THE END OF NIGHT, Paul Bogard travels the globe to find the night, blending personal narrative, natural history, health, science, and folklore to shed light on darkness. Showing exactly what we've lost, what we have left, and what we might hope to regain, he attempts nothing less than a restoration of how we see the spectacularly primal, wildly dark night sky.

The Nature and Environment Book Club is devoted to the best of nature writing and environmental reporting with discussions on the second Wednesday of each month. Readers and writers interested in books ranging from such classics as Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek to topical reportage like Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction will want to join the conversation.

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the library. 

Title:Great Books Discussion: Pere Goriot
Date:Monday, July 17, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Hilary Caws-Elwitt
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

 Pere Goriot by Honore de Balzac

The story of its title character Goriot; a mysterious criminal-in-hiding named Vautrin; and a naive law student named Eugène de Rastignac. We are introduced to the characters at Maison Vauquer, a boarding house owned by the widow Madame Vauquer. Central to the theme of the book is the struggle to achieve upper-class status in society. Rastignac is eager to achieve this upper-class standing but is unfamiliar to the ways of Parisian society. Vautrin tries to convince Rastignac to pursue an unmarried woman named Victorine, a dubious suggestion which involves the disposal of her brother who blocks the woman's fortune. The failings to achieve this upper-class status are exemplified by Goriot who has bankrupted himself to support his two well-married daughters, yet they reject him. A classic and tragic story, this is one of the most pivotal works in Balzac's sweeping novel sequence "La Comédie Humaine", which endeavors to depict the effects of society on the entirety of the human condition.

About Great Books Discussion Style

The Great Books discussion is structured so that the evening’s selected reading is discussed in a think tank environment with the intention of gaining insight from other readers that one would not have by reading alone. The seminar facilitator asks questions of the participants about the reading selection and helps the discussion stay focused. Our main goal is to have fun and take many interpretations from the group in order to enjoy a greater understanding of a selected reading.

Discussions are open to everyone and free of charge.  For a list of past and future discussion books and to contact the group visit, http://mail.salticid.com/mailman/listinfo/forbes_great_books_salticid.com.

About the facilitator:

Hilary Caws-Elwitt has her BA in English & American Literature from Harvard, MLS from University of Arizona, and ran Susquehanna County Reads for its first 4 years. But mostly she loves reading and discussing the books!

Title:Afternoon Book Discussion: Civil Disobedience
Date:Friday, July 21, 2017
Time:1:00pm - 2:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's discussion will be about

Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau

 

Philosopher, naturalist, poet and rugged individualist, Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862) has inspired generations of readers to think for themselves, to follow the dictates of their own conscience and to make an art of their lives. "Civil Disobedience," his most powerful and influential political essay, exalts the law of conscience over civil law. Originally published in 1849 as "Resistance to Civil Government," Thoreau's classic essay on resistance to the laws and acts of government that he considered unjust was largely ignored until the Twentieth Century when Mohandas Ghandi, Martin Luther King, Jr. and anti-Vietnam War activists applied Thoreau's principles.

The Afternoon Book Discussion group meets on the 3rd Friday of the month in the Watson Room for a casual hour long discussion. The reading selections are mostly fiction choices with a sprinkling of non-fiction, young adult, and classics with an emphasis on books appealing to an ecclectic taste as well as those with interesting points of discussion.  Pre-registration is not required and drop-ins are welcome. Tea and light refreshments are served. 

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the circulation desk. 

Title:Science Fiction and Fantasy Discussion: Neuromancer
Date:Wednesday, August 2, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

Neuromancer by William Gibson

The Matrix is a world within the world, a global consensus- hallucination, the representation of every byte of data in cyberspace...

Case had been the sharpest data-thief in the business, until vengeful former employees crippled his nervous system. But now a new and very mysterious employer recruits him for a last-chance run. The target: an unthinkably powerful artificial intelligence orbiting Earth in service of the sinister Tessier-Ashpool business clan. With a dead man riding shotgun and Molly, mirror-eyed street-samurai, to watch his back, Case embarks on an adventure that ups the ante on an entire genre of fiction.

Anyone interested in Science Fiction or Fantasy is welcome. Although we focus on this month’s selection, we will discuss any topics related to Science Fiction or Fantasy, books or movies. Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out.

Title:Nature and Environment Book Club: Guns, Germs, and Steel
Date:Wednesday, August 9, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's book discussion will be about Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond.

 

In this "artful, informative, and delightful" (William H. McNeill, New York Review of Books) book, Jared Diamond convincingly argues that geographical and environmental factors shaped the modern world. Societies that had had a head start in food production advanced beyond the hunter-gatherer stage, and then developed religion --as well as nasty germs and potent weapons of war --and adventured on sea and land to conquer and decimate preliterate cultures. A major advance in our understanding of human societies, Guns, Germs, and Steel chronicles the way that the modern world came to be and stunningly dismantles racially based theories of human history. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science, the Rhone-Poulenc Prize, and the Commonwealth club of California's Gold Medal.

The Nature and Environment Book Club is devoted to the best of nature writing and environmental reporting with discussions on the second Wednesday of each month. Readers and writers interested in books ranging from such classics as Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek to topical reportage like Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction will want to join the conversation.

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the library. 

Title:Second Monday Book Discussion: For Whom The Bell Tolls
Date:Monday, August 14, 2017
Time:6:30pm - 8:30pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

We'll be reading For Whom The Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway


The story of Robert Jordan, a young American in the International Brigades attached to an antifascist guerilla unit in the mountains of Spain, it tells of loyalty and courage, love and defeat, and the tragic death of an ideal. In his portrayal of Jordan's love for the beautiful Maria and his superb account of El Sordo's last stand, in his brilliant travesty of La Pasionaria and his unwillingness to believe in blind faith. A work at once rare and beautiful, strong and brutal, compassionate, moving, and wise. Greater in power, broader in scope, and more intensely emotional than any of the author's previous works, it stands as one of the best war novels of all time.

Literary minded discussion. Open to new members.

Title:Great Books Discussion: Light in August
Date:Monday, August 21, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Hilary Caws-Elwitt
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

 Light in August by William Faulkner

A novel about hopeful perseverance in the face of mortality, this features some of Faulkner’s most memorable characters: guileless, dauntless Lena Grove, in search of the father of her unborn child; Reverend Gail Hightower, who is plagued by visions of Confederate horsemen; and Joe Christmas, a desperate, enigmatic drifter consumed by his mixed ancestry.

About Great Books Discussion Style

The Great Books discussion is structured so that the evening’s selected reading is discussed in a think tank environment with the intention of gaining insight from other readers that one would not have by reading alone. The seminar facilitator asks questions of the participants about the reading selection and helps the discussion stay focused. Our main goal is to have fun and take many interpretations from the group in order to enjoy a greater understanding of a selected reading.

Discussions are open to everyone and free of charge.  For a list of past and future discussion books and to contact the group visit, http://mail.salticid.com/mailman/listinfo/forbes_great_books_salticid.com.

About the facilitator:

Hilary Caws-Elwitt has her BA in English & American Literature from Harvard, MLS from University of Arizona, and ran Susquehanna County Reads for its first 4 years. But mostly she loves reading and discussing the books!

Title:Second Monday Book Discussion: The Quickening Maze
Date:Monday, September 11, 2017
Time:6:30pm - 8:30pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

We'll be reading The Quickening Maze by Adam Foulds

Based on real events, The Quickening Maze won over UK critics and readers alike with its rapturous prose and vivid exploration of poetry and madness. Historically accurate yet brilliantly imagined, this is the debut publication of this elegant and riveting novel in the United States.

In 1837, after years of struggling with alcoholism and depression, the great nature poet John Clare finds himself in High Beach—a mental institution located in Epping Forest on the outskirts of London. It is not long before another famed writer, the young Alfred Tennyson, moves nearby and grows entwined in the catastrophic schemes of the hospital's owner, the peculiar Dr. Matthew Allen, his lonely adolescent daughter, and a coterie of mysterious local characters. With lyrical grace, the cloistered world of High Beach and its residents are brought richly to life in this enchanting book.

Literary minded discussion. Open to new members.

Title:Nature and Environment Book Club: Desert Solitaire
Date:Wednesday, September 13, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:00pm
Location:Watson Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:


This month's book discussion will be about Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey.

 

Edward Abbey lived for three seasons in the desert at Moab, Utah, and what he discovered about the land before him, the world around him, and the heart that beat within, is a fascinating, sometimes raucous, always personal account of a place that has already disappeared, but is worth remembering and living through again and again.

 

The Nature and Environment Book Club is devoted to the best of nature writing and environmental reporting with discussions on the second Wednesday of each month. Readers and writers interested in books ranging from such classics as Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek to topical reportage like Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction will want to join the conversation.

Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out at the library. 

Title:Great Books Discussion: Gilgamesh
Date:Monday, September 18, 2017
Time:7:00pm - 8:30pm
Presenter:Hilary Caws-Elwitt
Location:Community Room
Categories:Book Discussions, Recurring Events
Description:

 Gilgamesh (Stephen Mitchell translation)

An epic poem from ancient Mesopotamia dating from the Third Dynasty of Ur (circa 2100 BC), this is often regarded as the first great work of literature. The literary history of Gilgamesh begins with five Sumerian poems about 'Bilgamesh' (Sumerian for 'Gilgamesh'), king of Uruk. These independent stories were later used as source material for a combined epic. The story introduces Gilgamesh, king of Uruk. Gilgamesh, two-thirds god and one-third man, is oppressing his people, who cry out to the gods for help. For the young women of Uruk this oppression takes the form of a droit du seigneur — or "lord's right" to sleep with brides on their wedding night. For the young men (the tablet is damaged at this point) it is conjectured that Gilgamesh exhausts them through games, tests of strength, or perhaps forced labour on building projects...

About Great Books Discussion Style

The Great Books discussion is structured so that the evening’s selected reading is discussed in a think tank environment with the intention of gaining insight from other readers that one would not have by reading alone. The seminar facilitator asks questions of the participants about the reading selection and helps the discussion stay focused. Our main goal is to have fun and take many interpretations from the group in order to enjoy a greater understanding of a selected reading.

Discussions are open to everyone and free of charge.  For a list of past and future discussion books and to contact the group visit, http://mail.salticid.com/mailman/listinfo/forbes_great_books_salticid.com.

About the facilitator:

Hilary Caws-Elwitt has her BA in English & American Literature from Harvard, MLS from University of Arizona, and ran Susquehanna County Reads for its first 4 years. But mostly she loves reading and discussing the books!