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The true crime novel, The Boys of the Dark: A Story of Betrayal and Redemption in the Deep South by Robin Gaby Fisher, Michael O’McCarthy, and Robert W. Straley is the book of the month for Feb. 2020. Stop by the library to pick up a copy of the book, read the book at your leisure then come to the meeting at 5:30 p.m., on Thurs., Feb. 27 to discuss the book and socialize with friends.
A story that garnered national attention, this is the harrowing tale of two men who suffered abuses at a reform school in Florida in the 1950s and 60s, and who banded together fifty years later to confront their attackers.
Michael O’McCarthy and Robert W. Straley were teens when they were termed incorrigible youth by authorities and ordered to attend the Florida School for Boys. They discovered in Marianna, the City of Southern Charm, an immaculately groomed campus that looked more like an idyllic university than a reform school. But hidden behind the gates of the Florida School for Boys was a hell unlike any they could have imagined. The school’s guards and administrators acted as their jailers and tormentors. The boys allegedly bore witness to assault, rape, and possibly even murder.
For fifty years, both men—and countless others like them—carried their torment in silence. But a series of unlikely events brought O’McCarthy, now a successful rights activist, and Straley together, and they became determined to expose the Florida School for Boys for what they believed it to be: a youth prison with a century-long history of abuse. They embarked upon a campaign that would change their lives and inspire others.
Robin Gaby Fisher, a Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and author of the New York Times bestselling After the Fire, collaborates with Straley and O’McCarthy to offer a riveting account of their harrowing ordeal. The book goes beyond the story of the two men to expose the truth about a century-old institution and a town that adopted a Nuremberg-like code of secrecy and a government that failed to address its own wrongdoing. What emerges is a tale of strength, resolve, and vindication in the face of the kinds of terror few can imagine.
You are invited to join the Bibliophiles at the Peebles Library once a month for book club. The engaging political novel, Blowout by Rachel Maddow is the book of the month for March. You may pick up a copy of the book at the Peebles Library. If you prefer to use a digital device, you may download the audiobook or e-book from OverDrive. You may read the book at your leisure then come to the book club at 4 p.m. on Mon., Mar. 16 to discuss the novel.
With her trademark black humor, Maddow takes us on a switchback journey around the globe, revealing the greed and incompetence of Big Oil and Gas along the way, and drawing a surprising conclusion about why the Russian government hacked the 2016 U.S. election. She deftly shows how Russia’s rich reserves of crude have, paradoxically, stunted its growth, forcing Putin to maintain his power by spreading Russia’s rot into its rivals, its neighbors, the West’s most important alliances, and the United States. Chevron, BP, and a host of other industry players get their star turn, most notably ExxonMobil and the deceptively well-behaved Rex Tillerson. The oil and gas industry has weakened democracies in developed and developing countries, fouled oceans and rivers, and propped up authoritarian thieves and killers. But being outraged at it is, according to Maddow, ‘like being indignant when a lion takes down and eats a gazelle. You can’t really blame the lion. It’s in her nature.’
The contemporary novel, The Risk of Us by Rachel Howard delves the reader into an riveting story about adoption and parenting. Pick up a copy of the book at the North Adams Library, read it at your leisure then come to the meeting to socialize and discuss the book with friends. The book club meeting is at 5:30 p.m., on Thurs, Mar. 26.
Seven-year-old Maresa arrives with an indomitable spirit, a history of five failed foster care ‘placements,’ and a susceptibility to angry panic attacks fueled by memories of abuse. Maresa’s new foster mother, whose name the reader never learns, brings good intentions but also her own history of trauma, while her husband’s heart condition threatens to explode. These three flawed but deeply human characters want more than anything to love each other–but how does a person get to unconditional love? Over the course of a year, as Maresa approaches the age at which children become nearly impossible to place, all three must discover if they can move from being three separate people to a true family—or whether, almost unthinkably, the adoption will fail.
Written in a spare and thought-provoking style evoking aspects of Jenny Offill and Rachel Cusk, The Risk of Us deftly explores the inevitable tests children bring to a marriage, the uncertainties of family life, and the ways true empathy obliterates our defenses.
You are invited to join the Bibliophiles at the Peebles Library once a month for book club. The enthralling science fiction novel, The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut is the book of the month for April. You may pick up a copy of the book at the Peebles Library. If you prefer to use a digital device, you may download the e-book from OverDrive. You may read the book at your leisure then come to the book club at 4 p.m. on Mon., Apr. 20 to discuss the novel.
The Sirens of Titan is an outrageous romp through space, time, and morality. The richest, most depraved man on Earth, Malachi Constant, is offered a chance to take a space journey to distant worlds with a beautiful woman at his side. Of course there’s a catch to the invitation—and a prophetic vision about the purpose of human life that only Vonnegut has the courage to tell.
North Adams Library Book Club
Join the North Adams Library’s adult book club. We meet on the last Thursday of each month at 5:30 p.m. at the North Adams Library. Pick up a copy of each month’s book in advance at the library desk. Ask about large print or audio book copies. Browse the 2019 reading list below. Each month, we’ll discuss the book of the month, share thoughts, and moderator Julia will share quizzes, prizes, and snacks. For more information, call Julia at 937-386-2556.
Bibliophiles Peebles Library Book Club
Join the Peebles Library Book Club, “The Bibliophiles,” on the third Monday of each month at 4:00 p.m. at the Peebles Library. Each fall, we’ll vote on a reading list for the coming year. Everyone is welcome to join us! For more information call Nick Slone at 937-587-2939. Browse reviews and summaries, and find these titles in our Catalog. Pick up a copy of next month’s title at the Peebles Library.