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JULY 2, 2014

Serena

by Ron Rash

The year is 1929, and newlyweds George and Serena Pemberton travel from Boston to the North Carolina mountains where they plan to create a timber empire. Although George has already lived in the camp long enough to father an illegitimate child, Serena is new to the mountains—but she soon shows herself to be the equal of any man, overseeing crews, hunting rattle-snakes, even saving her husband's life in the wilderness. Together this lord and lady of the woodlands ruthlessly kill or vanquish all who fall out of favor. Yet when Serena learns that she will never bear a child, she sets out to murder the son George fathered without her. Mother and child begin a struggle for their lives, and when Serena suspects George is protecting his illegitimate family, the Pembertons' intense, passionate marriage starts to unravel as the story moves toward its shocking reckoning. -Bookbrowse.com

July 2, 2014 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

UPCOMING DISCUSSIONS:

AUGUST 6, 2014

The Supremes at Earl's All-You-Can-Eat

by Edward Kelsey Moore

Earl’s All-You-Can-Eat is home away from home for this inseparable Plainview, Indiana, trio. Dubbed “the Supremes” by high school pals in the tumultuous 1960s, they weather life’s storms together for the next four decades. Now, during their most challenging year yet, dutiful, proud, and talented Clarice must struggle to keep up appearances as she deals with her husband’s humiliating infidelities. Beautiful, fragile Barbara Jean is rocked by the tragic reverberations of a youthful love affair. And fearless Odette engages in the most terrifying battle of her life while contending with the idea that she has inherited more than her broad frame from her notorious pot-smoking mother, Dora.

Through marriage, children, happiness, and the blues, these strong, funny women gather each Sundayat the same table at Earl’s diner for delicious food, juicy gossip, occasional tears, and uproarious banter. -Amazon.com

August 6, 2014 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

SEPTEMBER 3, 2014

The Kitchen House

by Kathleen Grissom

When a white servant girl violates the order of plantation society, she unleashes a tragedy that exposes the worst and best in the people she has come to call her family. Orphaned while onboard ship from Ireland, seven-year-old Lavinia arrives on the steps of a tobacco plantation where she is to live and work with the slaves of the kitchen house. Under the care of Belle, the master's illegitimate daughter, Lavinia becomes deeply bonded to her adopted family, though she is set apart from them by her white skin.

Eventually, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, where the master is absent and the mistress battles opium addiction. Lavinia finds herself perilously straddling two very different worlds. When she is forced to make a choice, loyalties are brought into question, dangerous truths are laid bare, and lives are put at risk. -Amazon.com

September 3, 2014 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

OCTOBER 1, 2014

Benediction

by Kent Haruf

When Dad Lewis is diagnosed with terminal cancer, he and his wife, Mary, must work together to make his final days as comfortable as possible. Their daughter, Lorraine, hastens back from Denver to help look after him; her devotion softens the bitter absence of their estranged son, Frank, but this cannot be willed away and remains a palpable presence for all three of them. Next door, a young girl named Alice moves in with her grandmother and contends with the painful memories that Dad's condition stirs up of her own mother's death. Meanwhile, the town’s newly arrived preacher attempts to mend his strained relationships with his wife and teenaged son, a task that proves all the more challenging when he faces the disdain of his congregation after offering more than they are accustomed to getting on a Sunday morning. And throughout, an elderly widow and her middle-aged daughter do everything they can to ease the pain of their friends and neighbors. -Amazon.com

October 1, 2014 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room


NOVEMBER 5, 2014

The Book Thief

by Markus Zusak

It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still. Liesel Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement. -Amazon.com

November 5, 2014 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

DECEMBER 3, 2014

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

by Kate DiCamillo

Once, in a house on Egypt Street, there lived a china rabbit named Edward Tulane. The rabbit was very pleased with himself, and for good reason: he was owned by a girl named Abilene, who adored him completely. And then, one day, he was lost.... -Amazon.com

December 3, 2014 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

JANUARY 7, 2015

The Tilted World

by Tom Franklin and Beth Ann Fennelly

In 1927, as rains swell the Mississippi, the river threatens to burst its banks and engulf everything in its path, including the tiny hamlet of Hobnob, where federal agents Ted Ingersoll and Ham Johnson arrive to investigate the disappearance of two fellow agents—and find a baby boy abandoned in the middle of a crime scene. Ingersoll finds a home for the infant with local woman Dixie Clay Holliver, unaware that she's the best bootlegger in the county and has many tender and consequential secrets of her own. -Amazon.com

January 7, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

FEBRUARY 4, 2015

The Caretakers

by Matt Jaeger (Kentucky Author, Paducah native, and MCLIB's own!)

The Caretakers include: a thirty year old with no name, a man who sees a fairy, a boy searching for pond monsters, an agoraphobe who hears a baby under his porch, a man who thinks he's turning into a fish, a fiance who disappears, a man who finds a reason to become a legend, a wife looking for a trade, an inmate who starts to look like his guard, a woman who fears the house across the street, a woman who falls in love with the Savior, and a modern day Noah, who forgets to bring something important with him on the boat.

February 4, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

MARCH 4, 2015

Orphan Train

by Christina Baker Kline

Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer is close to “aging out” out of the foster care system. A community service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping Molly out of juvie and worse...

As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly learns that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be. A young Irish immigrant orphaned in New York City, Vivian was put on a train to the Midwest with hundreds of other children whose destinies would be determined by luck and chance. Molly discovers that she has the power to help Vivian find answers to mysteries that have haunted her for her entire life – answers that will ultimately free them both. -Amazon.com

March 4, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

APRIL 1, 2015

Leavings

by Wendell Berry (Kentucky Author!)

This collection offers a masterful blend of elegies, lyrics, and letters, with the occasional short love poem. Alternately amused, outraged, and resolved, Berry’s welcome voice is the constant in this varied mix. As he looks back on his long life, his work resonates with a renewed depth. The book concludes with a new sequence of Sabbath poems, works occasioned by Berry’s Sunday morning walks of meditation and observation. -Amazon.com

April 1, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

MAY 6, 2015

The Language of Flowers

by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

The Victorian language of flowers was used to convey romantic expressions: honeysuckle for devotion, asters for patience, and red roses for love. But for Victoria Jones, it’s been more useful in communicating mistrust and solitude. After a childhood spent in the foster-care system, she is unable to get close to anybody, and her only connection to the world is through flowers and their meanings. Now eighteen and emancipated from the system with nowhere to go, Victoria realizes she has a gift for helping others through the flowers she chooses for them. But an unexpected encounter with a mysterious stranger has her questioning what’s been missing in her life. And when she’s forced to confront a painful secret from her past, she must decide whether it’s worth risking everything for a second chance at happiness. -Amazon.com

May 6, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

JUNE 10, 2015

Chinaberry

by James Still (Kentucky Author!)

Chinaberry follows the adventures of a young boy as he travels to Texas from Alabama in search of work on a cotton farm. Upon arriving, he discovers the ranch of Anson and Lurie Winters, a young couple whose lives are defined by hard work, family, and a tragedy that haunts their past. Still's entrancing narrative centers on the boy's experience at the ranch under Anson's watchful eye and Lurie's doting care, highlighting the importance of home, whether it is defined by people or a place. -Amazon.com

June 10, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

JULY 1, 2015

Beautiful Ruins

by Jess Walter

The story begins in 1962. On a rocky patch of the sun-drenched Italian coastline, a young innkeeper, chest-deep in daydreams, looks on over the incandescent waters of the Ligurian Sea and spies an apparition: a tall, thin woman, a vision in white, approaching him on a boat. She is an actress, he soon learns, an American starlet, and she is dying. And the story begins again today, half a world away, when an elderly Italian man shows up on a movie studio's back lot-searching for the mysterious woman he last saw at his hotel decades earlier. -Goodreads

July 1, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

AUGUST 5, 2015

Outcast

by Jolina Petersheim

Raised in an Old Order Mennonite community, Rachel Stoltzfus is a strong-willed single woman, content living apart from mainstream society until whispers stir the moment her belly swells with new life. Refusing to repent and name the partner in her sin, Rachel feels the wrath of the religious sect as she is shunned by those she loves most. She is eventually coerced into leaving by her brother-in-law, the bishop. But secrets run deep in this cloistered community, and the bishop is hiding some of his own, threatening his conscience and his very soul. When the life of Rachel's baby is at stake, however, choices must be made that will bring the darkness to light, forever changing the lives of those who call Copper Creek home. -Amazon.com

August 5, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

SEPTEMBER 2, 2015

Pearl in the Storm: How I Found My Heart in the Middle of the Ocean

by Tori Murden McClure

In June 1998, Tori McClure began rowing across the Atlantic Ocean solo in a twenty-three-foot plywood boat with no motor or sail. Within days she lost all communication with shore but decided to forge ahead -- not knowing that 1998 would turn out to be the worst hurricane season on record in the North Atlantic. When she was nearly killed by a series of violent storms, Tori was forced to signal for help and head home in what felt like disgrace. But then her life changed in unexpected ways. She was hired by Muhammad Ali, who told her she did not want to be known as the woman who "almost" rowed across the Atlantic. And at thirty-five, Tori fell in love. -Amazon.com

September 2, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room

OCTOBER 7, 2015

Memory of Old Jack

by Wendell Berry (Kentucky Author!)

In a rural Kentucky river town, "Old Jack" Beechum, a retired farmer, sees his life again through the sades of one burnished day in September 1952. Bringing the earthiness of America's past to mind, The Memory of Old Jack conveys the truth and integrity of the land and the people who live from it. Through the eyes of one man can be seen the values Americans strive to recapture as we arrive at the next century. -Amazon.com

October 7, 2015 | Noon | 2nd Floor meeting room