Events

25Oct2021

Maine 201 Book Club: Catherynne M. Valente

The Glass Town Game by Catherynne M. Valente

From 6.30 pm until 7.30 pm

Valente lives and writes on an unnamed Maine island, but in this month's selection, she takes us into the world of the Brontë siblings's childhood during the Napoleonic wars. Valente grew up in Northern California, studied ancient Greek linguistics at UC San Diego and Edinburgh University, and lived in Japan longterm before finding her way to Maine. Perhaps it's her own diverse past that helps her summon the inner lives of 19th century British children.

The book club discussion is on Monday, October 25 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm on Zoom. All readers welcome!

The Glass Town Game by Catherynne M. Valente

Inside a small Yorkshire parsonage, Charlotte, Branwell, Emily, and Anne Brontë have invented a game called Glass Town, where their toy soldiers fight Napoleon and no one dies. This make-believe land helps the four escape from a harsh reality: Charlotte and Emily are being sent away to a dangerous boarding school, a school they might not return from. But on this Beastliest Day, the day Anne and Branwell walk their sisters to the train station, something incredible happens: the train whisks them all away to a real Glass Town, and the children trade the moors for a wonderland all their own.

 

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22Nov2021

Maine 201 Book Club: Phuc Tran

Sigh, Gone: A Misfit's Memoir of Great Books, Punk Rock, and the Fight to Fit In by Phuc Tran

From 6.30 pm until 7.30 pm

Phuc Tran learned early in his move to small town Pennsylvania that fitting in was never going to be easy. Starting with his name. He writes candidly about his cross-cultural experiences, his love for language and literature, and the divide between his parents's immigrant experience in the United States and his own. Tran forged his own path through life and now lives in Portland, Maine with his wife and daughters. He teaches Classics and works as a professional tattoo artist.

The book club discussion is on Monday, November 22 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm on Zoom. All readers welcome!

Sigh, Gone: A Misfit’s Memoir of Great Books, Punk Rock, and the Fight to Fit In by Phuc Tran

In 1975, during the fall of Saigon, Phuc Tran immigrates to America along with his family. By sheer chance they land in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, a small town where the Trans struggle to assimilate into their new life. In this coming-of-age memoir told through the themes of great books such asThe Metamorphosis, The Scarlet Letter, The Iliad, and more, Tran navigates the push and pull of finding and accepting himself despite the challenges of immigration, feelings of isolation, and teenage rebellion, all while attempting to meet the rigid expectations set by his immigrant parents.

 

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20Dec2021

Maine 201 Book Club: Cynthia Lord

Rules by Cynthia Lord

From 6.30 pm until 7.30 pm

We couldn't go 12 moths without including a selection by Maine's beloved juvenile author Cynthia Lord, and we couldn't go wrong with any one of her titles! Finding and writing convincingly in others' voices is a talent, and Lord possesses it in oodles. In Rules, we explore the perspective of 12-year-old Catherine whose life is defined in many ways by her brother with autism.

Please note that our December discussion is pushed up to the third Monday of the month to better accommodate everyone's holiday plans. The book club discussion is on Monday, December 20 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm on Zoom. All readers welcome!

Rules by Cynthia Lord

Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She’s spent years trying to teach David the rules-from “a peach is not a funny-looking apple” to “keep your pants on in public”-in order to stop his embarrassing behaviors. But the summer Catherine meets Jason, a paraplegic boy, and Kristi, the next-door friend she’s always wished for, it’s her own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?

 

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24Jan2022

Maine 201 Book Club: Susan Hand Shetterly

Seaweed Chronicles: A World at the Water's Edge by Susan Hand Shetterly

From 6.30 pm until 7.30 pm

We conclude our yearlong exploration of Maine authors with Susan Hand Shetterly's poetic non-fiction work, Seaweed Chronicles. Shetterly may be the last Maine author in our Maine 201 series, but we're pretty sure she won't be the last one we read going forward. Come wrap up an incredible year of reading Maine authors.

The book club discussion is on Monday, January 24 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm on Zoom. All readers welcome!

Seaweed Chronicles: A World at the Water’s Edge by Susan Hand Shetterly

Shetterly takes readers deep into the world of this essential organism by providing an immersive, often poetic look at life on the rugged shores of her beloved Gulf of Maine, where the growth and harvesting of seaweed is becoming a major industry. While examining the life cycle of seaweed and its place in the environment, she tells the stories of the men and women who farm and harvest it—and who are fighting to protect this critical species against forces both natural and man-made.

 

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