Book Club Meetings

Bailey Cove Evening: The Italian Secretary

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Thursday, September 15, 2005 - 7:00pm - 8:00pm

The Italian Secretary by Caleb Carr
Mycroft Holmes, an advisor to the ailing queen Victoria, summons his famous brother and Dr. Watson to Edinburgh to investigate the puzzling murders of two of the Queen's aides. Because the men had been working on the renovation of the royal palace of Holyrood, Sherlock recounts to Watson the story of David Rizzio, "the Italian secretary" who had been butchered by supporters of Queen Elizabeth in front of Mary, Queen of Scots, in Holyrood. Using the spectral history of the Italian secretary and making some pragmatic deductions, the duo close on the killers' deadly plot against the royal family. [check the catalog]

Bailey Cove Evening: Freakonomics

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Thursday, January 11, 2007 - 6:00pm - 7:00pm

Freakonomics by Steven Levitt
Levitt and Stephen Dubner dub the material in this work "freakonomics" because Levitt uses analytical tools from economics to address a range of questions that, at first glance, might seem to be far removed from the discipline of the "dismal science." They consider questions such as how to determine if teachers are aiding in students' cheating on standardized tests, the impact of information asymmetry on the operation of the Ku Klux Klan, how the organizational structure of crack gangs resemble other businesses, and the influence of parents on child development. [check the catalog]

Bailey Cove Evening: Dark Star Safari

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Thursday, November 30, 2006 - 6:00pm - 7:00pm

Dark Star Safari by Paul Theroux
Paul Theroux takes readers the length of Africa by rattletrap bus, dugout canoe, cattle truck, armed convoy, ferry, and train. In the course of his epic and enlightening journey, he endures danger, delay, and dismaying circumstances. Gauging the state of affairs, he talks to Africans, aid workers, missionaries, and tourists. What results is an insightful meditation on the history, politics, and beauty of Africa and its people. [check the catalog]

Bailey Cove Evening: Nickel and Dimed

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Thursday, September 21, 2006 - 7:00pm - 8:00pm

Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich
Millions of Americans work for poverty-level wages, and one day Barbara Ehrenreich decided to join them. She was inspired in part by the rhetoric surrounding welfare reform, which promised that any job equals a better life. But how can anyone survive, let alone prosper, on $6 to $7 an hour? To find out, Ehrenreich moved from Florida to Maine to Minnesota, taking the cheapest lodgings available and accepting work as a waitress, hotel maid, house cleaner, nursing-home aide, and Wal-Mart salesperson. She soon discovered that even the "lowliest" occupations require exhausting mental and physical efforts. And one job is not enough; you need at least two if you intend to live indoors. Nickel and Dimed reveals low-wage America in all its tenacity, anxiety, and surprising generosity -- a land of Big Boxes, fast food, and a thousand desperate strategies for survival. Instantly acclaimed for its insight, humor, and passion, this book is changing the way America perceives its working poor. (Henry Holt and Co.) [check the catalog]

Bailey Cove Evening: American Gods

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Thursday, July 27, 2006 - 7:00pm - 8:00pm

American Gods by Neil Gaiman
The intriguing premise of Gaiman's tale is that the gods of European yore, who came to North America with their immigrant believers, are squaring off for a rumble with new indigenous deities: "gods of credit card and freeway, of Internet and telephone, of radio and hospital and television, gods of plastic and of beeper and of neon." [check the catalog]

Bailey Cove Evening: Blood of the Prodigal

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Thursday, May 18, 2006 - 7:00pm - 8:00pm

Blood of the Prodigal by P. L. Gaus
With an unusual setting and a quiet tone, this mystery carries readers into the world of the Ohio Amish, where a bishop's grandson, Jeremiah, has disappeared. The boy had been living with the bishop and his family since his father was banished from the community 10 years earlier, just before Jeremiah's illegitimate birth to a local drug-addicted teenager. The bishop calls upon a local "English" (non-Amish) college professor to locate the boy, as he has reason to believe that Jeremiah is with his missing father for the summer. Eventually Jeremiah's father is found, shot to death, not far from the bishop's farm, but Jeremiah himself has not turned up. [check the catalog]

Bailey Cove Classics: Prometheus Bound

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, September 11, 2006 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

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: Othello

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, October 3, 2005 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

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: The Blithedale Romance

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, August 4, 2008 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

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: The Prince

Location: Bailey Cove Branch Library
Date: Monday, August 7, 2006 - 4:00pm - 5:00pm

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.

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