Full booklist

This is a full booklist of all titles read by Literature Out Loud. You can also view only their upcoming meetings or, if you really like their taste in books, a printable list of authors and titles to use as a reading list.

Literature Out Loud!: The Catcher in the Rye

Join us for a slide show of artworks created in 1951, a cup of tea or two, and a lively discussion of J. D. Sallinger's Catcher in the Rye.

Story of Holden Caufield with his idiosyncrasies, penetrating insight, confusion, sensitivity and negativism. Holden, knowing he is to be expelled from school, decides to leave early. He spends three days in New York City and tells the story of what he did and suffered there.

Literature Out Loud!: O Pioneers!

Join us for a slide show of artworks created in 1913, a cup of tea or two, and a lively discussion of Willa Cather's "O Pioneers!".

Literature Out Loud!: Sense and Sensibility

Join us for a slide show of artworks created in 1811, a cup of tea or two, and a lively discussion of Jane Austen's "Sense and Sensibility".

Two sisters, one practical and conventional and the other emotional and sentimental, find that only through compromise of their mutual differences can they get along.

Literature Out Loud!: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Join us for a slide show of artworks created in 1865, a cup of tea or two, and a lively discussion of Louis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland".

Literature Out Loud!: The Sun Also Rises

The quintessential novel of the Lost Generation, The Sun Also Rises is one of Ernest Hemingway’s masterpieces and a classic example of his spare but powerful writing style. A poignant look at the disillusionment and angst of the post-World War I generation, the novel introduces two of Hemingway’s most unforgettable characters: Jake Barnes and Lady Brett Ashley. The story follows the flamboyant Brett and the hapless Jake as they journey from the wild nightlife of 1920s Paris to the brutal bullfighting rings of Spain with a motley group of expatriates.

Literature Out Loud!: Their Eyes Were Watching God

Join us as we discuss Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neal Hurston.  Before the discussion, we will view a slideshow of prominent artworks created in 1937, the same year that Hurston's book was published.

Hurston's beloved classic--one of the most important American novels of the 20th century--follows the fortunes of Janie Crawford, a woman who was married three times and had been tried for the murder of one of her husbands in the black town of Eaton, Florida.

Literature Out Loud!: Fairy Tales of H. C. Andersen

Join us as we discuss 5 selections of H. C. Andersen's Fairy Tales (selections TBA).

Literature Out Loud!: Brave New World

Huxley´s vision of the future in his astonishing 1931 novel Brave New World -- a world of tomorrow in which capitalist civilization has been reconstituted through the most efficient scientific and psychological engineering, where the people are genetically designed to be passive, consistently useful to the ruling class.

Literature Out Loud!: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

After a cyclone transports her to the land of Oz, Dorothy must seek out the great wizard in order to return to Kansas.

Bailey Cove Classics: As I Lay Dying

As I Lay Dying is Faulkner’s harrowing account of the Bundren family’s odyssey across the Mississippi countryside to bury Addie, their wife and mother. Narrated in turn by each of the family members—including Addie herself—as well as others the novel ranges in mood, from dark comedy to the deepest pathos.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Old Curiosity Shop

Join us as we discuss The Old Curiosity Shop and celebrate the 200th birthday of Charles Dickens for the months of August and September!   Heart-wrenching tale of Little Nell and her doting grandfather who flee from cold and brutal London in the 1840s to escape debt and to roam the English countryside as beggars.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Old Curiosity Shop

Join us as we discuss The Old Curiosity Shop and celebrate the 200th birthday of Charles Dickens for the months of August and September!  There will be cake!   Heart-wrenching tale of Little Nell and her doting grandfather who flee from cold and brutal London in the 1840s to escape debt and to roam the English c

Bailey Cove Classics: Hadji Murad

(note: because this title is limited in the HMCPL collection, you may also choose to read it online for free at this address: http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/t/tolstoy/leo/t65h/) In 1851 Leo Tolstoy enlisted in the Russian army and was sent to the Caucasus to help defeat the Chechens.

Bailey Cove Classics: The End of the Affair

In England during World War II, an American writer and the bored wife of a British civil servant fall in love. Then she mysteriously ends the affair.

Bailey Cove Classics: A Midsummer Night's Dream

From the hilarious mischief of the elf Puck to the rough humor of the self-centered Bottom and his fellow players, from the palace of Theseus in Athens to the magic wood where fairies play, Shakespeare's marvelous A Midsummer Night's Dream is a play of enchantment and an insightful portrait of the predicaments of love.

Bailey Cove Classics: An Enemy of the People

This title may be freely downloaded here. We will be reading and discussing one of the major plays by the first modern playwright, Henrick Ibsen. An Enemy Of The People -- Ibsen's vigorous attack on public opinion.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Robber Bridegroom

New! Improved! The Bailey Cove Classics book club is now a "lunch bunch" at 12:00 noon instead of 10:00am each First Monday of the month. Join us on Monday, March 5th, and bring a sack lunch as we discuss Eudora Welty's "The Robber Bridegroom". Legendary figures of Mississippi' s past-flatboatman Mike Fink and the dreaded Harp brothers-mingle with characters from Eudora Welty' s own imagination in an exuberant fantasy set along the Natchez Trace.

Bailey Cove Classics: Metamorphosis

(This title may also be freely downloaded as an ebook from HMCPL's Digital Media Zone Public Domain Collection.)  Virtually unknown during his lifetime,Franz Kafkais now one of the world's most widely read and discussed authors. His nightmarish novels and short stories have come to symbolize modern man's anxiety and alienation in a bizarre, hostile, and dehumanized world.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Golden Ass

(This title may also be freely downloaded as an ebook from HMCPL's Digital Media Zone Public Domain Collection, search term: Apuleius.)

Bailey Cove Classics: The Bhagavad Gita (Continued)

***Please NOTE date change: we will meet on October 10th instead of the 3rd!

Part 2 of 2 discussions to take place in September and October.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Bhagavad Gita

Part 1 of 2 discussions to take place in September and October. (This title may also be freely downloaded as an ebook from HMCPL's Digital Media Zone Public Domain Collection.) The Bhagavad Gita first captured the American imagination in the mid-19th century, when Henry Thoreau and other self-styled "Brahmins" found fresh, contemporary wisdom in India's ancient sacred text.

Bailey Cove Classics: Major Barbara by Bernard Shaw

Join us for a discussion of the play, "Major Barbara", by George Bernard Shaw.

Bailey Cove Classics: Things Fall Apart

 Achebe's first novel portrays the collision of African and European cultures in people's lives. Okonkwo, a great man in Igbo traditional society, cannot adapt to the profound changes brought about by British colonial rule. Yet, as in classic tragedy, Okonkwo's downfall results from his own character as well as from external forces.

Bailey Cove Classics: Sorrows of Young Werther

A digital copy of title can be freely downloaded here: http://dmz.hmcpl.org/13C39C8C-5FE8-4284-82FB-28C08F887F36/10/490/en/PublicDomainCollection.htm

Tragic masterpiece explores mind of an artist in alternately joyful and despairing letters recounting an unhappy romance. Goethe addresses issues of love, death, and redemption in an influential portrayal of a character who struggles to reconcile his artistic sensibilities with the demands of the objective world.

*Please note that this meeting has been changed FROM the previous week of May 2. I hope you can join us!*

At this discussion, we will compare and contrast these two masterwork stories by Chekhov.

A copy of the short story, "The Bet", can be viewed freely here: [gutenberg.org text file] , here: [gutenberg.org HTML file], or here: [eastoftheweb.com file]

Bailey Cove Classics: The Inferno

The first of the 3 canticles in "La divina commedia "(The Divine Comedy), this 14th-century allegorical poem begins Dante's imaginary journey from Hell to Purgatory to Paradise with his sojourn among the damned. There he encounters historical and mythological creatures -- each symbolic of a particular vice or crime. Translated beautifully by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

Bailey Cove Classics: Madame Bovary

In 1853 Flaubert wrote that his work on Madame Bovary was going slowly because his personality had never been of less use to him. On another occasion he stated he was Madame Bovary. Some critics take Madame Bovary to be a text about texts. Others believe Madam Bovary is merely proof that some people should never learn to read.

Bailey Cove Classics: A Tale of Two Cities

*Please note!*  New & improved SNOW-FREE date! If you missed us on the 10th, please join us for the 24th!

Bailey Cove Classics: The Aspern Papers

With a decaying Venetian villa as a backdrop, an anonymous narrator relates his obsessive quest for the personal documents of a deceased Romantic poet, one Jeffrey Aspern. Led by his mission into increasingly unscrupulous behavior, he is ultimately faced with relinquishing his heart's desire or attaining it at an overwhelming price.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Clouds

A poet who hated an age of decadence, armed conflict, and departure from tradition, Aristophanes' comic genius influenced the political and social order of his own fifth-century Athens. Plato singled out Aristophanes' play “The Clouds” as slander contributing to the trial and execution of Socrates although other satirical playwrights had caricatured the philosopher.

[This title replaces the Princess Casamassima discussion.]

Bailey Cove Classics: The Woman in White

"There in the middle of the broad, bright high-road-there, as if it had that moment sprung out of the earth or dropped from the heaven-stood the figure of a solitary woman, dressed from head to foot in white garments." Thus young Walter Hartright first meets the mysterious woman in white in what soon became one of the most popular novels of the nineteenth century.

Dr. Jennifer Garlen continues the discussion of Campbell's classic work on mythology and psychology.

Campbell outlines the Hero’s Journey, a universal motif of adventure and transformation that runs through virtually all of the world’s mythic traditions. He also explores the Cosmogonic Cycle, the mythic pattern of world creation and destruction. Discussion led by Dr. Jennifer Garlen.

Bailey Cove Classics: Shamela by Henry Fielding

Henry Fielding wrote Shamela (1741) in response to Samuel Richardson's book Pamela (1740), of which Shamela is a splendidly bawdy travesty. Fielding demonstrates his concern for the corruption of contemporary society, politics, religion, morality, and taste. Discussion led by Dr. Jennifer Garlen.

Charming satire concerns a young lady who poses as a serving girl to win the heart of a young gentleman too shy to court ladies of his own class. Discussion led by Dr. Jennifer Garlen.

Bailey Cove Classics: Moonstone by Wilkie Collins

A priceless diamond has been stolen from an Indian temple and bequeathed to Rachel Verinder. On her birthday, her beau Franklin brings her the gift, only to have it stolen again. No one is above suspicion, as Franklin and Sergeant Cuff piece together the riveting puzzle.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Intended at first as a simple story of a boy's adventures in the Mississippi Valley-a sequel to Tom Sawyer-the book grew and matured under Twain's hand into a work of immeasurable richness and complexity. More than a century after its publication, the critical debate over the symbolic significance of Huck's and Jim's voyage is still fresh, and it remains a major work that can be enjoyed at many levels: as an incomparable adventure story and as a classic of American humor.

Bailey Cove Classics: Civil Disobedience

Thoreau wrote this classic essay to advocate public resistance to the laws and acts of government that he considered unjust. The practical application of Civil Disobedience was largely ignored until the twentieth century when, at different times, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr. and anti-Vietnam War activists applied Thoreau's principles.

Bailey Cove Classics: Jane Eyre

An orphan girl's progress from the custody of cruel relatives to an oppressive boarding school culminates in a troubled career as a governess. Jane's first assignment at Thornfield, where the proud and cynical master harbors a scandalous secret, draws readers ever deeper into a compelling exploration of the mysteries of the human heart.

Bailey Cove Classics - The Brothers Karamazov

Dostoevsky's greatest novel, The Karamazov Brothers (1880), is both a brilliantly told crime story and a passionate philosophical debate. The dissolute landowner Fyodor Pavlovich Karamazov is murdered; his sons - the atheist intellectual Ivan, the hot-blooded Dmitry, and the saintly novice Alyosha - are all at some level involved. This discussion will specifically examine the chapter entitled "The Grand Inquisitor."

Bailey Cove Classics - Dracula

Dracula chronicles the vampire's journey from Transylvania to the nighttime streets of London. There, he searches for the blood of strong men and beautiful women while his enemies plot to rid the world of his frightful power. In it, Stoker created a new word for terror, a new myth to feed our nightmares, and a character who will outlive us all.

Bailey Cove Classics - Fanny Hill

Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure, better known as Fanny Hill, is one of the most notorious texts in English literature. As recently as 1963 an unexpurgated edition was the subject of a trial, yet in the 18th century, Cleland's open celebration of sexual enjoyment was a best selling novel. Fanny's story, as she falls into prostitution and then rises to respectability, takes the form of a confession that is vividly coloured by copious and explicit physiological details of her carnal adventures.

Bailey Cove Classics - Cyrano de Bergerac

Cyrano, the gallant soldier and brilliant wit, also is a timid lover, and, because of his nose, woos his love by proxy of a more handsome man. 

Bailey Cove Classics: Siddhartha

Siddhartha is an allegorical novel by Hermann Hesse which deals with the spiritual journey of an Indian boy called Siddhartha during the time of the Buddha.

Bailey Cove Classics - Arabian Nights and Days

This series of linked intrigues and adventures is a clever, witty concoction that begins on the day following the Thousand and One Nights, when the vizier Dandan learns that his daughter, Shahrzad, has succeeded in saving her life by enthralling the sultan with wondrous tales.

Bailey Cove Classics - Tales from the Thousand and One Nights

An unexpurgated translation of the "Tales From the Thousand and One Nights", which represent the expression of a lay and secular imagination in revolt against religious austerity and zeal in Oriental literature. They depict a world of magic but their bawdiness and realism anchor them to daily life.

Bailey Cove Classics - Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead

Stoppard's play is the inventive tale of "Hamlet" as told from the worm's-eye view of the bewildered Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, two minor characters in Shakespeare's play.

Bailey Cove Classics - Gulliver's Travels

The fantastic voyages of Lemuel Gulliver to four marvelous realms: Lilliput, where the people are six inches tall; Brobdingnag, a land inhabited by giants; Laputa, a wondrous flying island; and a country where the Houyhnhnms, a race of intelligent horses, are served by savage humanoid creatures called Yahoos. A brilliant combination of adventure, humor, and philosophy.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Castle of Otranto

This thrilling tale abounds in adventure, suspense, and supernatural occurrences. In a realm where a villain reigns, mysterious events aid in fulfilling a prophecy that spells doom for the ruler and justice for the rightful heir. Otranto is the first Gothic novel and paved the way for later important works such as Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. UAH's Dr. Jennifer Garlen will lead the discussion.

Bailey Cove Classics - Robinson Crusoe

Classic adventure story of a man marooned on an uninhabited island for 24 years: his struggle to survive, the dramatic encounter with Friday and their eventual escape.

Bailey Cove Classics - One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich

One of the most significant and outspoken literary documents ever to come out of Soviet Russia. A brutal depiction of life in a Stalinist camp and a moving tribute to man's triumph of will over relentless dehumanization, this is Solzhenitsyn's first novel to win international acclaim.

Bailey Cove Classics - Candide

One of the finest satires ever written. The swift and lively tale follows the absurdly melodramatic adventures of the youthful Candide. As Candide experiences and witnesses calamity upon calamity, he begins to discover that-- contrary to the teachings of his tutor, Dr. Pangloss-- all is not always for the best. Filled with wit, intelligence, and an abundance of dark humor, Candide teaches us that it is possible to challenge blind optimism without losing the will to live and pursue a happy life.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Blithedale Romance

Renouncing the city for a pastoral life, a group of utopians set out to reform a dissipated America. But the group is a powerful mix of competing ambitions and its idealism finds little satisfaction in farmwork. Instead, of changing the world, the members of the Blithedale community individually pursue egotistical paths that ultimately lead to tragedy.

Bailey Cove Classics: Idylls of the King

UAH professor Dr. Jennifer Garlen will discuss the evolution of the Arthurian legend. About the book: with regal melancholy and superb craftsmanship, Tennyson's poems evoke past and present-the Isle of the Lotos-eaters, Camelot, and his own twilit English gardens-seeking to reconcile the Victorian zeal for public progress with private despair. Praised over all other poets for his unerring portraits of the gentleman and the beggar alike, Tennyson still favored neither.

Bailey Cove Classics: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

It is Christmas in Camelot and a truly royal feast has been laid out for King Arthur and his Knights. And though there is plenty of good cheer to go around, the festivities hardly begin before a monstrous, axe-wielding, green-skinned Knight barges in. He has come to see the famous Knights of the Round Table and offer them a simple but deadly challenge -a challenge taken on by the brave Sir Gawain -a challenge that will force him to chose between his honor and his life.

Bailey Cove Classics - Revelations of Divine Love

Special guest Dr. William Munson returns to discuss the writings and visions of Julian of Norwich, who was the first female English-language author. This book stems from a series of visions she had at age thirty, suggesting the concept of universal salvation in a time when the Black Death was seen as divine retribution for humankind's sins. 

Bailey Cove Classics - Goblin Market

Rossetti's most famous poem is the story of two sisters who hear goblin cries at night and follow them to a mysterious market. One sister buys fruit from the goblins and eats it, while the other does not; the poem follows how their choices changed their lives.

Bailey Cove Classics: Bhagavad Gita

The Bhagavad Gita is universally acknowledged as one of the world's literary and spiritual masterpieces. It is the core text of the Hindu tradition and has been treasured by American writers from Emerson and Thoreau to T. S. Eliot, who called it the greatest philosophical poem after the Divine Comedy.

Bailey Cove Classics: Leaves of Grass

When Leaves of Grass was first published in 1855 as a slim tract of twelve untitled poems, Walt Whitman was still an unknown. But his self-published volume soon became a landmark of poetry, introducing the world to a new and uniquely American form. The "father of free verse," Whitman drew upon the cadence of simple, even idiomatic speech to "sing" such themes as democracy, sexuality, and frank autobiography.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Love Songs of Sappho

Called the "Tenth Muse" by the ancients, Greece's greatest female lyric poet Sappho (ca. 610-580 B.C.E.) spent the majority of her life on the famed island of Lesbos. Passionate and breathtaking, her poems survive only in fragments, following religious conspiracies to silence her. This excellent translation includes Roche's brilliant essay, "Portrait of Sappho".

Bailey Cove Classics: Aeneid

The story of an epic voyage in which Aeneas crosses stormy seas, becomes entangled in a tragic love affair with Dido of Carthage, descends to the world of the dead - all the way tormented by the vengeful Juno, Queen of the Gods - and finally reaches Italy, where he will fulfill his destiny: to found the Roman people. A stirring tale of arms and heroism, dispossession and defeat, and an unsparing portrait of a man caught between love, duty, and fate, the Aeneid brings to life a whole world of human passion, nobility, and courage.

Bailey Cove Classics: Symposium

Full of drama, humor and sharply drawn characters, the Symposium offers profound insights into gender roles, sex in society and the value of sublimating our basic instincts. Symposium attempts to find the ultimate manifestation of the love that controls the world, leading to mystic union with eternal and supercosmic beauty.

Bailey Cove Classics: Hamlet

His father is dead. Has his mother married the killer? A ghost cries out for vengeance, but has the Prince who hears the cry gone mad? A kingdom hangs in the balance, but who can be trusted? Family, politics, blood lust, betrayal, mystery, friendship and love--each plays a role in Shakespeare's great tragedy, Hamlet.

Bailey Cove Classics: La Vita Nuova

This celebration of the poet's passionate love for his immortal Beatrice weaves together rapturous sonnets and canzoni with prose commentaries and an autobiographical narrative. A predecessor to The Divine Comedy, La Vita Nuova (The New Life) also serves as an ever-relevant treatise on the art and technique of poetry.

Bailey Cove Classics: Troilus and Criseyde

The tragedy of Troilus and Criseyde is one of the greatest narrative poems in English literature. Set during the siege of Troy, it tells how the young knight Troilus, son of King Priam, falls in love with Criseyde, a beautiful widow. Brought together by Criseyde's uncle, Pandarus, the lovers are then forced apart by the events of war, which test their oaths of fidelity and trust to the limits.

Bailey Cove Classics: Rubáiyát

Rubáiyát means "quatrains" in the Persian language. This verse form was popularized in Edward Fitzgerald's translation of the collection of Persian verses known as the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam. In fact, Rubáiyát is a common shorthand name for this collection.

Bailey Cove Classics: Conference of the Birds

Like Rumi and Hafiz, the name Attar conjures up images of passionate attraction to the divine. Attar was a Persian Sufi of the 12th century and his masterpiece is The Conference of the Birds, an epic allegory of the seeker's journey to God.

Bailey Cove Classics: Henry IV, Part I

Henry IV: Part I is the second in a series of four English history plays that make up Shakespeare's major tetralogy. Essentially a coming of age story in which the king's son, Prince Henry or Hal, emerges from his youthful role as a wastrel companion of the tavern crew, into the role of a genuine English monarch by virtue of both blood and character.

Bailey Cove Classics: Lysistrata

Writing at a time of political and social crisis in Athens, Aristophanes (c. 447-c. 385 B.C.) was an eloquent, yet bawdy, challenger to the demagogue and the sophist. In Lysistrata, a band of women plea for an end to the long war between Athens and Sparta.

Bailey Cove Classics: Canterbury Tales

The Canterbury Tales depicts a storytelling competition between 14th century English pilgrims drawn from all ranks of society. The tales are as various as the pilgrims themselves, encompassing comedy, pathos, tragedy, and cynicism. The discussion will be led by UAH English professor, Dr. Munson.

Bailey Cove Classics: Prometheus Unbound

Prometheus Unbound is a four-act play by Percy Bysshe Shelley first published in 1820. It is inspired by Aeschylus's Prometheus Bound and concerns the final release from captivity of Prometheus.

Bailey Cove Classics: Prometheus Bound

One of the greatest of the classical Greek dramas, based on the Greek legend of the Titan demi-god who, against the will of Zeus, stole fire from the gods for the benefit of man. His terrible punishment by Zeus, and his continuing defiance of Zeus in the face of that punishment, remain universal symbols of man's vulnerability in any struggle with the gods.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Prince

What is truly meant by "Machiavellian"? Explore the book to seek answers. Possessed of a great intellect, Niccolò Machiavelli was uniquely suited to examine and explain the important details of statecraft. Machiavelli, like Plato and Pythagoras and Confucius two hundred odd decades before him, saw only one method by which a thinking man, himself not powerful, might do the work of state building, and that was by seizing the imagination of a Prince. With these writings, he has influenced the history of the world.

Bailey Cove Classics: Ramayana

Drawing his inspiration from the work of an eleventh century Tamil poet called Kamban, Narayan has used the talents of a master novelist to recreate the excitement and joy he has found in the classic Indian epic.

Bailey Cove Classics: Inferno

The first of the 3 canticles in La divina commedia (The Divine Comedy), this 14th-century allegorical poem begins Dante's imaginary journey from Hell to Purgatory to Paradise with his sojourn among the damned. There he encounters historical and mythological creatures -- each symbolic of a particular vice or crime.

Bailey Cove Classics: the works of T.S. Eliot

Eliot was one of the most daring innovators of twentieth-century poetry. Never compromising either with the public or indeed with language itself, he has followed his belief that poetry should aim at a representation of the complexities of modern civilization in language and that such representation necessarily leads to difficult poetry. Despite this difficulty his influence on modern poetic diction has been immense. Discussion included "Waste Land," "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock," and "Portrait of a Lady."

Bailey Cove Classics: Hedda Gabler

Universally condemned in 1890 when it was written, Hedda Gabler has since become one of Ibsen's most frequently performed plays. Its title role is elusive and complex: Hedda is an intelligent and ambitious woman, who has no means of finding personal fulfillment in the stifling world of late nineteenth-century bourgeois society. Too frightened of scandal to become involved with a brilliant, wayward writer, she opts for a conventional but loveless marriage in the hope of finding surrogate satisfaction through her husband's career.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Great Gatsby

A portrait of the Jazz Age in all of its decadence and excess, Gatsby captured the spirit of the author's generation and earned itself a permanent place in American mythology. Self-made, self-invented millionaire Jay Gatsby embodies some of Fitzgerald's--and his country's--most abiding obsessions: money, ambition, greed, and the promise of new beginnings.

Bailey Cove Classics: Les misérables

The story of how the convict Jean-Valjean struggled to escape his past and reaffirm his humanity, in a world brutalized by poverty and ignorance, became the gospel of the poor and the oppressed.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Golden Apples

Collection of previously-published short stories by Eudora Welty plus one new novella-length story, "Main Families in Morgana." Symbolism from Greek mythology unifies the stories, all of which are set in the Mississippi Delta town of Morgana over a 40-year period. The hero of "Moon Lake" and the guitarist in "Music from Spain" are Perseus figures. King MacLain, the protagonist of "Shower of Gold," is a sexually adventurous Zeus figure.

Bailey Cove Classics: Their Eyes Were Watching God

Fair and long-legged, independent and articulate, Janie Crawford sets out to be her own person -- no mean feat for a black woman in the '30s. Janie's quest for identity takes her through three marriages and into a journey back to her roots.

Bailey Cove Classics: Picture of Dorian Gray

A lush, cautionary tale of a life of vileness and deception, or a loving portrait of the aesthetic impulse run rampant? Why not both? After Basil Hallward paints a beautiful, young man's portrait, his subject's frivolous wish that the picture change and he remain the same comes true. Dorian Gray's picture grows aged and corrupt while he continues to appear fresh and innocent.

Bailey Cove Classics: Medea

Witch, barbarian, foreigner, or a woman wronged and committed to the most horrific kind of justice, Medea is a heroine who makes her audience shudder. Euripides shows us an astonishingly strong female protagonist, whom some readers have identified as the first feminist in Western literature. Seeing where her strength leads her, though, we must wonder if she was intended to be portrayed a model or as a warning.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Odyssey

The Odyssey is literature's grandest evocation of everyman's journey though life. Odysseus's reliance on his wit and wiliness for survival in his encounters with divine and natural forces during his ten-year voyage home to Ithaca after the Trojan War is at once a timeless human story and an individual test of moral endurance.

Bailey Cove Classics: Julius Caesar

In this striking tragedy of political conflict, Shakespeare turns to the ancient Roman world and to the famous assassination of Julius Caesar by his republican opponents. The play is one of tumultuous rivalry, of prophetic warnings--"Beware the ides of March"--and of moving public oratory "Friends, Romans, countrymen!" Ironies abound and most of all for Brutus, whose fate it is to learn that his idealistic motives for joining the conspiracy against a would-be dictator are not enough to sustain the movement once Caesar is dead.

Bailey Cove Classics: Mourning Becomes Electra

This play updates the Greek myth of Orestes to the family of a Northern general in the American Civil War. Agamemnon is now General Ezra Mannon, Clytemnestra is his second wife Christine, Orestes is his son Orin, and Electra is his daughter Lavinia. As an updated Greek tragedy, the play features murder, adultery, incestuous love and revenge, and even a group of townspeople who function as a kind of Greek chorus.

Bailey Cove Classics: Desire Under the Elms

Widower Ephraim Cabot abandons his New England farm to his three sons, who hate him but share his greed. Eben, the youngest and brightest sibling, feels the farm is his birthright, as it originally belonged to his mother. He buys out his half-brothers' shares of the farm with money stolen from his father, and Peter and Simeon head off to California to seek their fortune. Later, Ephraim returns with a new wife, the beautiful and headstrong Abbie, who enters into an adulterous affair with Eben.

Bailey Cove Classics: Oresteia

The Oresteia, the only extant trilogy among the Greek tragedies, is one of the great foundational texts of Western culture. Beginning with Agamemnon, which describes Agamemnon's return from the Trojan War and his murder at the hands of his wife, Clytemnestra, and continuing through Orestes' murder of Clytemnestra in Libation Bearers and his acquittal at Athena's court in Eumenides, the trilogy traces the evolution of justice in human society from blood vengeance to the rule of law.

Bailey Cove Classics: Othello

A powerful drama of a marriage that begins with fascination (between the exotic Moor Othello and the Venetian lady Desdemona), with elopement, and with intense mutual devotion and that ends precipitately with jealous rage and violent deaths.

Bailey Cove Classics: Trojan Women

Describes with unparalleled intensity the horrific brutality that both women and children undergo at the end of the Trojan War, but in the end is a play that insists on the victory of spirit amid the horrors created by gods and men.

Bailey Cove Classics: The Oedipus Trilogy

Taking up the theme of humans being trapped both by fate and their own frailties, the plays tell the story of the family of Oedipus, who in Greek mythology killed his father and married his mother without knowing that they were, in fact, his parents.

Bailey Cove Classics: Iliad

So great is the impact of ancient Greek literature on Western culture that even people who have never read Homer's Iliad or The Odyssey know a lot about them. The Trojan Horse, Achilles' heel, the Sirens' call, Scylla and Charybdis--all have entered popular mythology, becoming metaphors for the less heroic situations we face in our own lives.

Bailey Cove Classics: Lysistrata

Led by the eponymous Lysistrata, the story's female characters barricade the public funds building and withhold sex from their husbands to end the Peloponnesian War and secure peace. In doing so, Lysistrata engages the support of women from Sparta, Boeotia, and Corinth. All of them, at first aghast at the suggestion of withholding sex, finally agree swearing an oath of allegiance to the cause.

Book vs. Movie: The Great Gatsby

Book vs. Movie -- YOU decide! Join us for a brown-bag lunch the first Monday of each month to watch great films and discuss the groundbreaking books from which they were inspired. In even-numbered months (August, October, December, etc.) we will watch the movie, in odd numbered months (September, November, January, etc.) we will discuss both the book on its own, and the great "Book vs. Movie" debate. We encourage you to read the book before the movie to reduce spoilers! Popcorn and sodas provided.