Book Clubs

Interested in joining a book club? The Decatur Public Library offers different book clubs and you can drop in any time! You do not have to the read the book to attend discussions, but you will want to.

 

 

DPL Book Club

The Club meets the third Thursday of each month at 1:00pm in the board room. This club reads a mixture of fiction and non-fiction. The 2017 Book Club List

Thursday, August 17 1:00pm, Board Room
A Higher Call:
An Incredible Story of Combat and Chivalry in the War-Torn Skies of WWII
by Adam Makos & Larry Alexander

December, 1943: A badly damaged American bomber struggles to fly over wartime Germany. At the controls is twenty-one-year-old Second Lieutenant Charlie Brown. Half his crew lay wounded or dead on this, their first mission. Suddenly, a Messerschmitt fighter pulls up on the bomber’s tail. The pilot is German ace Franz Stigler—and he can destroy the young American crew with the squeeze of a trigger…

What happened next would defy imagination and later be called “the most incredible encounter between enemies in World War II.”

The U.S. 8th Air Force would later classify what happened between them as “top secret.” It was an act that Franz could never mention for fear of facing a firing squad. It was the encounter that would haunt both Charlie and Franz for forty years until, as old men, they would search the world for each other, a last mission that could change their lives forever. From Amazon.


DPL Non-Fiction Book Club

The Club meets the fourth Tuesday of each month at 1:00pm in the board room. This club reads
non-fiction only. The 2017 Non-Fiction Book Club List

Tuesday, August 22, 1:00pm, Board Room
Lesser Beasts: A Snout-to-Tail History of the Humble Pig
by Mark Essig

Unlike other barnyard animals, which pull plows, give eggs or milk, or grow wool, a pig produces only one thing: meat. Incredibly efficient at converting almost any organic matter into nourishing, delectable protein, swine are nothing short of a gastronomic godsend, yet their flesh is banned in many cultures, and the animals themselves are maligned as filthy, lazy brutes.

As historian Mark Essig reveals in “Lesser Beasts,” swine have such a bad reputation for precisely the same reasons they are so valuable as a source of food: they are intelligent, self-sufficient, and omnivorous. What’s more, he argues, we ignore our historic partnership with these astonishing animals at our peril. Tracing the interplay of pig biology and human culture from Neolithic villages 10,000 years ago to modern industrial farms, Essig blends culinary and natural history to demonstrate the vast importance of the pig and the tragedy of its modern treatment at the hands of humans. Pork, Essig explains, has long been a staple of the human diet, prized in societies from Ancient Rome to dynastic China to the contemporary American South. Yet pigs ability to track down and eat a wide range of substances (some of them distinctly unpalatable to humans) and convert them into edible meat has also led people throughout history to demonize the entire species as craven and unclean. Today’s unconscionable system of factory farming, Essig explains, is only the latest instance of humans taking pigs for granted, and the most recent evidence of how both pigs and people suffer when our symbiotic relationship falls out of balance.

An expansive, illuminating history of one of our most vital yet unsung food animals, “Lesser Beasts” turns a spotlight on the humble creature that, perhaps more than any other, has been a mainstay of civilization since its very beginnings whether we like it or not.” From Amazon.


Books Between Bites

BBB is organized by the Friends of the Decatur Public Library and is not a standard book club. There is a speaker that comes in to present about a book or topic. They meet the first Wednesday of each month at 12:15pm in the Madden Auditorium.

Wednesday, September 6, 12:15 pm, Madden Auditorium
Speaker: Dick Virgin
Book: Small Great Things
Author: Jodi Picoult

Another high quality effort by Jodi Picoult who uses a true story as the basis of a gripping novel that embroils the reader in a contemporary story. An AfroAmerican nurse finds herself facing charges of allowing an infant child of white supremacists parents to die after they had her removed from their child’s care.

Richard Virgin, a native Midwesterner, is a retired public school administrator who worked in a variety of school districts including District #61.  He spent the last 15 years of his career opening and building a unique educational program of voluntary desegregation in an urban community collaborating with 12 rural/suburban school districts of Connecticut. It’s success led to the development of a proliferation of desegregated magnet schools in Connecticut.

Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years’ experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine checkup on a newborn, only to be told a few minutes later that she’s been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don’t want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene?

Ruth hesitates before performing CPR and, as a result, is charged with a serious crime. Kennedy McQuarrie, a white public defender, takes her case but gives unexpected advice: Kennedy insists that mentioning race in the courtroom is not a winning strategy. Conflicted by Kennedy’s counsel, Ruth tries to keep life as normal as possible for her family—especially her teenage son—as the case becomes a media sensation. As the trial moves forward, Ruth and Kennedy must gain each other’s trust, and come to see that what they’ve been taught their whole lives about others—and themselves—might be wrong.

With incredible empathy, intelligence, and candor, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion—and doesn’t offer easy answers. Small Great Things is a remarkable achievement from a writer at the top of her game. From Amazon.


DPL Graphic Novel Club

The Club meets the second Tuesday of each month at 6:30pm in the Staley room. This club reads a variety of Graphic Novels written primarily for adults. The 2017 Graphic Novel Club List.

Tuesday, September 12, 6:30pm, Staley Room
Habibi
by Craig Thompson

Sprawling across an epic landscape of deserts, harems, and modern industrial clutter, Habibi tells the tale of Dodola and Zam, refugee child slaves bound to each other by chance, by circumstance, and by the love that grows between them. We follow them as their lives unfold together and apart; as they struggle to make a place for themselves in a world (not unlike our own) fueled by fear, lust, and greed; and as they discover the extraordinary depth—and frailty—of their connection.

At once contemporary and timeless, Habibi gives us a love story of astounding resonance: a parable about our relationship to the natural world, the cultural divide between the first and third worlds, the common heritage of Christianity and Islam, and, most potently, the magic of storytelling. From Amazon.

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