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  Talk About Books meets every third Wednesday of the month at 6:30 at Guilford Free Library. Book selection for the following month is made by group consensus. On a chilly February day, two old friends meet in the throng outside a London crematorium to pay their last respects to Molly Lane. Both Clive Linley and Vernon Halliday had been Molly's lovers in the days before they reached their current eminence: Clive is Britain's most successful modern composer, and Vernon is editor of the newspaper The Judge. Gorgeous, feisty Molly had other lovers, too, notably Julian Garmony, Foreign Secretary, a notorious right-winger tipped to be the next prime minister. In the days that follow Molly's funeral, Clive and Vernon will make a pact with consequences that neither could have foreseen. Each will make a disastrous moral decision, their friendship will be tested to its limits, and Julian Garmony will be fighting for his political life.

August 2022 Book, When We WEre Orphans

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  Talk About Books meets every third Wednesday at 6:30 at the Library. This novel is about an Englishman named Christopher Banks. His early childhood was lived in the Shanghai International Settlement in China in the early 1900s, until his father, an opium businessman, and his mother disappear within a few weeks of each other when the boy is about ten years old. Christopher is sent to live with his aunt in England. He becomes a successful detective; now he will turn his skills to solve the case of his parents' disappearance. Though he knows a young woman named Sarah (also orphaned at age ten), Christopher never marries; he adopts an orphaned girl in England named Jennifer. His fame as a private investigator soon spreads, and in 1937 he returns to China to solve the most important case of his life. The impression is given that if he solves this case, a world catastrophe will be averted, but it is not apparent how. As Christopher pursues his investigation, the boundaries b

July 2022 Book, Flight Behavior

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Talk About Books meets every third Wednesday of the month at the Library at 6:30. Barbara Kingsolver's Flight Behavior transfixes from its opening scene, when a young woman's narrow experience of life is thrown wide with the force of a raging fire. In the lyrical language of her native Appalachia, Barbara Kingsolver bares the rich, tarnished humanity of her novel's inhabitants and unearths the modern complexities of rural existence. Characters and reader alike are quickly carried beyond familiar territory here, into the unsettled ground of science, faith, and everyday truces between reason and conviction. Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at seventeen. Now, after a decade of domestic disharmony on a failing farm, she has settled for permanent disappointment but seeks momentary escape through an obsessive flirtation with a younger man. As she hikes up a mountain road behind her house to a

June 2022 Book, Days Without End

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  Talk About Books meets every third Wednesday of the month at 6:30 at Guilford Free Library. Books are selected for the next month by  group consensus at the meeting. Days Without End by Sebastian Barry is the story of  Thomas McNulty, aged barely seventeen who, having fled the Great Famine in Ireland, signs up for the U.S. Army in the 1850s. With his brother in arms, John Cole, Thomas goes on to fight in the Indian Wars—against the Sioux and the Yurok—and, ultimately, the Civil War. Orphans of terrible hardships themselves, the men find these days to be vivid and alive, despite the horrors they see and are complicit in. Moving from the plains of Wyoming to Tennessee, Sebastian Barry’s latest work is a masterpiece of atmosphere and language. An intensely poignant story of two men and the makeshift family they create with a young Sioux girl, Winona, Days Without End is a fresh and haunting portrait of the most fateful years in American history.

May 2022 Book, The Lost City of the Monkey God: A True Story

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Talk About Books meets every third Wednesday of the month at Guilford Free Library at 6:30. We are not committed to any particular genre, but select according to group interest for the next month.  For May we selected The Lost City of the Monkey God , a work of nonfiction by Douglas Preston. Since the days of conquistador Hernán Cortés, rumors have circulated about a lost city of immense wealth hidden somewhere in the Honduran interior, called the White City or the Lost City of the Monkey God. Indigenous tribes speak of ancestors who fled there to escape the Spanish invaders, and they warn that anyone who enters this sacred city will fall ill and die. In 1940, swashbuckling journalist Theodore Morde returned from the rainforest with hundreds of artifacts and an electrifying story of having found the Lost City of the Monkey God-but then committed suicide without revealing its location. Three quarters of a century later, author Doug Preston joined a team of scientists on a g

April 2022 Book, Persuasion

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Talk About Books meets every third Wednesday of the month at Guilford Free Library at 6:30. We are not committed to any particular genre, but select according to group interest for the next month. At the March meeting, the attendees decided they wanted to read a classic, thus Persuasion by Jane Austen is our choice for discussion on April 20th.   Persuasion is the last novel completed by Jane Austen. It was published at the end of 1817, six months after her death.  The story concerns Anne Elliot, a young Englishwoman of twenty-seven years, whose family moves to lower their expenses and reduce their debt by renting their home to an Admiral and his wife. The wife's brother, Navy Captain Frederick Wentworth, was engaged to Anne in 1806, but the engagement was broken when Anne was "persuaded" by her friends and family to end their relationship. Anne and Captain Wentworth, both single and unattached, meet again after a seven-year separation, setting the scene for many

March 2022 Book, Nora Webster

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  Talk About Books meets every Third Wednesday of the month at 6:30 at Guilford Free Library. All are welcome to request a copy of the current book by emailing or calling the library. Nora Webster is set in a small town in Ireland in the 1960s, where a fiercely compelling, too-young widow and mother of four moves from grief, fear, and longing to unexpected discovery.  Set in Wexford, Ireland, and in breathtaking Ballyconnigar by the sea, Colm Toibin's eighth novel introduces the formidable, memorable Nora Webster. Widowed at 40, with four children and not enough money, Nora has lost the love of her life, Maurice, the man who rescued her from the stifling world she was born into. Wounded and self-centered from grief and the need to provide for her family, she struggles to be attentive to her children's needs and their own difficult loss. In masterfully detailing the intimate lives of one small family, Toibin has given us a vivid portrait of a time and an intricately w