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Small Communities – Big Books

 The Lunenburg book club meets the second Tuesday of the month at 7:30 p.m. at the Lunenburg library. All are welcome. Each month features a new selection. On June 9, the book will be "Sky Burial" by Xinran.

 Join award-winning author Bill Gilkerson for a reading and book talk centered on his latest work, "Pirate's Passage." The reading will be held at the Lunenburg library on June 20 beginning at 2:30 p.m. Steeped in wit, philosophy and mystical ambiguity, "Pirate's Passage" takes a maverick approach to history. After winning the Governor General's Award for Children's Literature in 2006, "Pirate's Passage" has been reprinted in several editions in North America and abroad, and is currently being made into a 10-part animated film series. Mr. Gilkerson is a professional marine artist, author and historian whose ongoing work is internationally recognized. He has authored 11 books to date, with another scheduled for release in 2009.

 Behind big ideas are big books. This summer the Lunenburg library will host Small Communities - Big Books, a book club with an alternative to the regular beach read by choosing one book, of significant stature, to read throughout the summer months. Sir Francis Bacon famously gave the advice, "Read not to contradict and confute, not to believe and take for granted, nor to find talk and discourse, but to weigh and consider." William Makepeace Thackeray's "Vanity Fair" has been chosen as this summer's book to weigh and consider. Join the discussion in Lunenburg library on Tuesday evenings in July, August and September.

 "Vanity Fair: A Novel without a Hero" marked a turning point in the novelist's career and fortunes. Known principally as a humorist, Thackeray surprised his audiences with this novel without a hero. Borrowing the title from John Bun-yan's "Pilgrim's Progress," "Vanity Fair" won a place in the great movement of European realism in the 1830s. Thackeray's own life is said to have been revealed in the pages of "Vanity Fair" and his character Dobbin is described as the author's alter ego. Thackeray described his purpose in writing "Vanity Fair" as "to indicate, in cheerful terms, that we are for the most part an abominably foolish and selfish people." He wanted his readers to join with him to "lift up our voices about these and howl to a congregation of fools."

 Small Communities - Big Books will offer readers a chance to howl in tandem at the Lunenburg library this summer. The library will have several copies available for borrowing, but you may want to browse through bookstores in order to be able to read this big book at your leisure.

 The meetings will be at 7 p.m. on Tuesdays in July, August and September - July 7, August 18 and September 1 - at the Lunenburg library, 19 Pelham Street. All are welcome. Please register at or by phoning 634-8008.

 Watch for details on upcoming library programs in this column, or check the library website at South Shore Public Libraries. Read. Discover. Learn. Share.

posted on 06/09/09
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