Book Clubs

 
The following groups meet monthly in the library. All groups welcome new members and all meetings are open to the public.
 
Greek Drama Discussion Group
The next meeting will be on Monday, Sept. 26, at 4:00 p.m. The topic will be the tragedy Seven Against Thebes by Aeschylus.
 
History Book Club The next meeting of this group will be on Wednesday, Sept. 28, at 7:00 p.m. The topic will be "Scaremongering and Witch Hunts in America." Book Club Chair Sam Coulbourn invites you to read any nonfiction book that fits the topic.  Possible subjects include:
  • Connecticut Witch Trials (mid-1600s)
  • Salem Witch Trials (1690s)
  • House Un-American Activities Committee
  • McCarthyism
  • The Red Scare
  • Hollywood Blacklisting and more
Poetry Readers  The next meeting will be on Thursday, Oct. 13, at 4 p.m. The topic will be Slant Six by Eric Belieu. Copies of the book will be available at the main desk three weeks before the meeting.
 
Sunday Book Chat The next meeting will be held on Oct. 16 at 2p.m. The topic will be The Boston Girl by Anita Diamant. 
PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY:  From the New York Times bestselling author of The Red Tent and Day After Night, comes an unforgettable novel about family ties and values, friendship and feminism told through the eyes of a young Jewish woman growing up in Boston in the early twentieth century.
      Addie Baum is The Boston Girl, born in 1900 to immigrant parents who were unprepared for and suspicious of America and its effect on their three daughters. Growing up in the North End, then a teeming multicultural neighborhood, Addie's intelligence and curiosity take her to a world her parents can't imagine--a world of short skirts, movies, celebrity culture, and new opportunities for women. Addie wants to finish high school and dreams of going to college. She wants a career and to find true love.
      Eighty-five-year-old Addie tells the story of her life to her twenty-two-year-old granddaughter, who has asked her "€œHow did you get to be the woman you are today?"€ She begins in 1915, the year she found her voice and made friends who would help shape the course of her life. From the one-room tenement apartment she shared with her parents and two sisters, to the library group for girls she joins at a neighborhood settlement house, to her first, disastrous love affair, Addie recalls her adventures with compassion for the naive girl she was and a wicked sense of humor.
      Written with the same attention to historical detail and emotional resonance that made Anita Diamant'€™s previous novels bestsellers,The Boston Girl is a moving portrait of one woman's complicated life in twentieth century America, and a fascinating look at a generation of women finding their places in a changing world.
 
Monday Evening Book Group The next meeting will not be until Oct. 17, at 6 p.m. The topic will be Justice by Michael J. Sandel.
PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY:  What are our obligations to others as people in a free society? Should government tax the rich to help the poor? Is the free market fair? Is it sometimes wrong to tell the truth? Is killing sometimes morally required? Is it possible, or desirable, to legislate morality? Do individual rights and the common good conflict?
      Michael J. Sandel's "€œJustice" course is one of the most popular and influential at Harvard. Up to a thousand students pack the campus theater to hear Sandel relate the big questions of political philosophy to the most vexing issues of the day . . . Justiceoffers readers the same exhilarating journey that captivates Harvard students. This book is a searching, lyrical exploration of the meaning of justice, one that invites readers of all political persuasions to consider familiar controversies in fresh and illuminating ways. Affirmative action, same-sex marriage, physician-assisted suicide, abortion, national service, patriotism and dissent, the moral limits of markets--Sandel dramatizes the challenge of thinking through these conflicts, and shows how a surer grasp of philosophy can help us make sense of politics, morality, and our own convictions as well. Justiceis lively, thought-provoking, and wise--an essential new addition to the small shelf of books that speak convincingly to the hard questions of our civic life.
Current Issues Political Book Discussion Group   The next meeting will be on Wednesday, Oct. 19, at 2 p.m. The topic will be Age of Ambition by Evan Osnos.
PUBLISHER'S SUMMARY: From abroad, we often see China as a caricature: a nation of pragmatic plutocrats and ruthlessly dedicated students destined to rule the global economy--or an addled Goliath, riddled with corruption and on the edge of stagnation. What we don't see is how both powerful and ordinary people are remaking their lives as their country dramatically changes.

As the Beijing correspondent for The New Yorker, Evan Osnos was on the ground in China for years, witness to profound political, economic, and cultural upheaval. InAge of Ambition, he describes the greatest collision taking place in that country: the clash between the rise of the individual and the Communist Party's struggle to retain control. He asks probing questions: Why does a government with more success lifting people from poverty than any civilization in history choose to put strict restraints on freedom of expression? Why do millions of young Chinese professionals-fluent in English and devoted to Western pop culture-consider themselves "angry youth," dedicated to resisting the West's influence? How are Chinese from all strata finding meaning after two decades of the relentless pursuit of wealth?

Writing with great narrative verve and a keen sense of irony, Osnos follows the moving stories of everyday people and reveals life in the new China to be a battleground between aspiration and authoritarianism, in which only one can prevail.

 
 
MVLC Book Club Kit Info