Madison Library meeting room

After opening the external doors of the library, the meeting room is located on your right.

Literary Giants: Hell at the Breech

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, January 5, 2004 - 6:30pm - 7:30pm

In 1897, in the rural southwestern area of Alabama known as Mitcham Beat, an aspiring politician is mysteiously murdered. Seeking retribution, his outraged friends - mostly poor cotton farmers - form a secret society, Hell-at-the-Breech, to punish the townspeople they believe are responsible. The hooded members of this gang wage a bloody year-long campaign of terror that culminates in a massacre, where the innocent suffer alongside the guilty.

Literary Giants: The Polished Hoe

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, March 31, 2008 - 7:30pm - 8:30pm

A tragic, complex story of postcolonial Barbadian life following World War II. Oppression still flourishes on Bimshire, an island controlled by "the Plantation." Mary, the kept woman of Mr. Bellfeels, the powerful plantation manager, is not accepted into the island's upper echelon nor accepted among her childhood friends. Her status isolates her from common folk like Sgt. Percy Stuart, her childhood friend. The story begins after Mary has murdered Mr. Bellfeels and Percy must record her all-night confession, an obligation complicated by his lifelong love for Mary.

Literary Giants: All Over But The Shoutin'

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, January 15, 2007 - 6:30pm - 7:30pm

This haunting, harrowing, and gloriously moving recollection of a life on the American margin tells the story of Rick Bragg, who grew up dirt poor in Alabama, and who became a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter for "The New York Times".

Literary Giants: My Brilliant Career

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, May 23, 2005 - 7:30pm - 8:30pm

In this ironically titled and riotous first novel by Miles Franklin, originally published in 1901, Sybylla tells the story of growing up passionate and rebellious in rural NSW. where the most that girls could hope for was to marry or to teach. Sybylla will do neither, but that doesn't stop her from falling in love, and it doesn't make the choices any easier.

Literary Giants: Bel Canto

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, November 24, 2003 - 6:30pm - 7:30pm

Somewhere in South America, at the home of the country's vice president, a lavish birthday party is being held in honor of Mr. Hosokawa, a powerful Japanese businessman. Roxanne Coss, opera's most revered soprano, has mesmerized the international guests with her singing. It is a perfect evening -- until a band of gun-wielding terrorists breaks in through the air-conditioning vents and takes the entire party hostage.

Literary Giants: What Was She Thinking

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, May 19, 2008 - 7:30pm - 8:30pm

When Sheba Hart arrives to be the new art teacher at the school where Barbara teaches history, solitary Barbara is immediately taken with her. Soon, she invites Barbara over to her house to have meals with her family. Barbara is shocked to learn that Sheba is being pursued by a 15-year-old student and scandalized to find that Sheba has given in to his romantic overtures. The novel's ending ultimately reveals Barbara's true character as much as it shows the depths to which Sheba has fallen. Both a penetrating character study and a sharp examination of voyeurism.

Literary Giants: The Last Picture Show

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, November 27, 2006 - 6:30pm - 7:30pm

The Last Picture Show is one of Larry McMurtry's most powerful, memorable novels. Set in a small, dusty, Texas town, The Last Picture Show introduced the characters of Jacy, Duane, and Sonny: teenagers stumbling toward adulthood, discovering the beguiling mysteries of sex and the even more baffling mysteries of love. Populated by a wonderful cast of eccentrics and animated by McMurtry's wry and raucous humor, The Last Picture Show is wild, heartbreaking, and poignant -- a coming-of-age novel that resonates with the magical passion of youth.

Literary Giants: Excellent Women

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Wednesday, April 27, 2005 - 7:30pm - 8:30pm

An unqualifiedly great novel from the writer most likely to be compared to Jane Austen, this is a very funny, perfectly written book that can rival any other in its ability to capture the essence of its characters on the page. Mildred Lathbury, the narrator of Pym's excellent book is a never-married woman in her 30s--which in 1950s England makes her a nearly-confirmed spinster. Hers is a pretty unexciting life, centered around her small church, and part-time job.

Literary Giants: Empire Falls

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, October 27, 2003 - 6:30pm - 7:30pm

"Elijah Whiting...had not succeeded in killing his wife with a shovel, nor had he recovered from the disappointment." These lines from the prolog of Russo's (Straight Man) latest novel prove prototypical. A keen observer of human nature, Russo explores the tragicomic realities of life in a small mill town in central Maine whose best days are behind. Miles Roby is a basically decent guy who runs the Empire Grill for the widow of the last Whiting male (who shot himself when he, too, couldn't recover from his failure to dispatch his wife).

Literary Giants: Early Bird

Location: Madison Public Library
Date: Monday, June 30, 2008 - 7:30pm - 8:30pm

Rothman has been a head writer for David Letterman and, at the age of 25, a retiree. Burned out after a few hectic years of work, he decided to quit and move into a retirement village in Florida. This exploration of the world of retirement forty years early provides a glimpse of a lifestyle known popularly only through stereotypes. Rothman becomes king of the shuffleboard court, arranges an uneasy détente with his condo mate's cats, and infiltrates the Pool Group. Rothman applies his reading on retirement to his personal situation with humorous and poignant results.

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