Friday, January 30, 2009

February Book Club Meetings

On February 9th, 2009 the Monday Evening Book Club will discuss Bill Bryson's hilarious autobiography The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid. We will meet in the Program Room at 7 pm.

More about this book ...

For more information about the author, go to Bill Bryson's website.

You can also watch an interview with Bill Bryson about his autobiography.

... and don't miss this priceless glimpse of 50's government propaganda entitled "Duck and Cover".

On February 11, 2009 the Seniors Book Club will meet in the 2nd floor Training Room to discuss The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill. Published under the title Someone knows my name in the USA, Australia and New Zealand, the book won the 2008 Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best Book and the 2007 Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize. Most recently it was nominated as a 2009 Canada Reads selection. This synopsis of the novel is quoted from the contest website:

Over the course of this epic novel, Aminata is transformed into a storyteller extraordinaire. She spins the astonishing tale of her remarkable travels from Africa to America and back again. Along the way, a sojourn in Nova Scotia illuminates a long-neglected chapter in Canadian history.

Aminata’s autobiography — or, in her words, “ghost story” — begins with her idyllic childhood in West Africa. Happy times are cut short when she is abducted at age 11, placed in chains, taken across the sea and forced into slavery at an indigo plantation in South Carolina.

But Aminata is a survivor and this is just one chapter in her remarkable life story. In a fitting twist for a book featured on Canada Reads, Aminata discovers that literacy just might be her ticket to a new life.

There is a wealth of background information available on this topic. Here are some interesting links for you to peruse:

Lawrence Hill's Website

A video interview with Lawrence Hill

Black History Videos

An online exhibit of Daniel G. Hill's life and work (created by his son, Lawrence Hill)

Black Loyalist documents (including a transcription of "The Book of Negroes")

Friday, January 16, 2009

Seniors' Favourites

Better late than never - here are some of the favourite reads our Seniors group members presented at December's Christmas Party. It was quite a mix of old and new classics, fiction and biographies. We all discovered something we can't wait to get our hands on to read.

Five smooth stones by Ann Fairbairn
The cloister and the hearth by Charles Reade (being re-ordered)
The Thornbirds by Colleen Mccullough (being re-ordered)
My left foot by Christie Brown (being re-ordered)
Mercy by Alissa York
A fine balance by Rohinton Mistry
Small island by Andrea Levy
The far pavillions (out of print, library only has DVD)
The Mitford years series by Jan Karon
The pillars of the earth by Ken Follet
Those who save us by Jenna Blum
The Shack by William P. Young
The year of wonders by Geraldine Brooks
The frozen Thames by Helen Humphreys
Stolen innocence by Elissa Wall (biography)
Three cups of tea by Greg Mortenson (biography)