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NON-FICTION Book Group
First Tuesday at 1PM
The group is reading The Great Quake: How the Biggest Earthquake in North America Changed our Understanding of the Planet by Henry Fountain. Books are available to borrow and all readers are welcome to the discussion.
This novel is a riveting narrative about the biggest earthquake in recorded history in North America, the 1964 Alaskan earthquake that demolished the city of Valdez and obliterated the coastal village of Chenega. On March 27, 1964, at 5:36 p.m., the biggest earthquake ever recorded in North America, measuring 9.2 on the Richter scale, struck Alaska, devastating coastal towns and villages and killing more than 130 people in what was then a relatively sparsely populated region.
In a riveting tale about the almost unimaginable brute force of nature, New York Times science journalist Henry Fountain re-creates the lives of the villagers and townspeople living in Chenega, Anchorage, and Valdez. He describes the sheer beauty of the geology of the region, with its towering peaks and 20-mile-long glaciers. He reveals the impact of the quake on the towns, the buildings, and the lives of the inhabitants.
The author also writes about George Plafker, a geologist for the U.S. Geological Survey. Plafker, who had years of experience scouring the Alaskan wilderness, was asked to investigate the Prince William Sound region in the aftermath of the quake, to better understand its origins. His work confirmed the then controversial theory of plate tectonics that explained how and why such deadly quakes occur, and how we can plan for the next one.
The Library will have copies of the book to borrow. All readers are welcome to the discussion.
Nonfiction Book Club
First Tuesday of Each Month from September to June at 1PM
In January, the group discusses Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy: Four Women Undercover in the Civil War, by Karen Abbott. Books are available to borrow and all readers are welcome to the discussion. This is the spellbinding true story of four women who risked everything to become spies during the Civil War.
Karen Abbott illuminates one of the most fascinating yet little known aspects of the Civil War: the stories of four courageous women--a socialite, a farmgirl, an abolitionist, and a widow--who were spies.
After shooting a Union soldier in her front hall with a pocket pistol, Belle Boyd became a courier and spy for the Confederate army, using her charms to seduce men on both sides. Emma Edmonds cut off her hair and assumed the identity of a man to enlist as a Union private, witnessing the bloodiest battles of the Civil War. The beautiful widow, Rose O'Neale Greenhow, engaged in affairs with powerful Northern politicians to gather intelligence for the Confederacy, and used her young daughter to send information to Southern generals. Elizabeth Van Lew, a wealthy Richmond abolitionist, hid behind her proper Southern manners as she orchestrated a far-reaching espionage ring, right under the noses of suspicious rebel detectives.
Using a wealth of primary source material and interviews with the spies' descendants, Abbott seamlessly weaves the adventures of these four heroines throughout the tumultuous years of the war. With a cast of real-life characters including Walt Whitman, Nathaniel Hawthorne, General Stonewall Jackson, detective Allan Pinkerton, Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln, and Emperor Napoleon III, Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy draws you into the war as these daring women lived it.
Third Thursday Book Group
Third Thursday at 1PM
The Third Thursday Book Club’s discussion on December 19th at 1 pm is about ‘books we love.’
There is no required reading. Attendees can discuss books they have loved in 2019 or prior. It is an informal discussion, and all book lovers are welcome to attend.
The meeting is also a holiday potluck, for which participants are welcome to bring a snack to share. The Library provides tea and coffee.
Upcoming Book Group Selections
Upcoming titles for our Third Thursday Book Group which meets at 1PM on the thrid Thursday of each month, unless otherwise noted in the calendar.
December 19: Sharing books we love and Holiday Party
The Non-Fiction Book Group meets the first Tuesday of the month, at 1PM.
July and August, the group takes a break, to return in September.
Jan 7th - Liar Tempress Soldier Spy by Karen Abbott
Feb 4th - Sea People by Christina Thompson
March 3rd - Leadership by Doris Kearns Goodwin