Nonfiction Book Club

Our discussions take place in our Community Room unless otherwise indicated. Copies of the books for discussion are available at our Checkout Desk for readers registering for the discussion.

 

The Finest Hours
by Michael J. Tougias and Casey Sherman
Tuesday, May 3, at 6:30 p.m.

In the winter of 1952, New England was battered by the most brutal nor’easter in years. As the weather wreaked havoc on land, the freezing Atlantic became a wind-whipped zone of peril.

In the early hours of Monday, February 18, while the storm raged, two oil tankers, the Pendleton and the Fort Mercer, found themselves in the same horrifying predicament. Built with “dirty steel,” and not prepared to withstand such ferocious seas, both tankers split in two, leaving the dozens of men on board utterly at the Atlantic’s mercy.

The Finest Hours is the gripping, true story of the valiant attempt to rescue the souls huddling inside the broken halves of the two ships. Coast Guard cutters raced to the aid of those on the Fort Mercer, and when it became apparent that the halves of the Pendleton were in danger of capsizing, the Guard sent out two thirty-six-foot lifeboats as well. These wooden boats, manned by only four seamen, were dwarfed by the enormous seventy-foot seas. As the tiny rescue vessels set out from the coast of Cape Cod, the men aboard were all fully aware that they were embarking on what could easily become a suicide mission.

The story is overflowing with scenes that sear themselves into the mind’s eye, as boats capsize, bows and sterns crash into one another, and men hurl themselves into the raging sea in their terrifying battle for survival.

Not all of the eighty-four men caught at sea in the midst of that brutal storm survived, but considering the odds, it’s a miracle — and a testament to their bravery — that any came home to tell their tales at all.

This discussion will be held upstairs in the library.

 

Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher
by Timothy Egan
Tuesday, June 7, at 6:30 p.m.

Edward Curtis was charismatic, handsome, a passionate mountaineer, and a famous portrait photographer, the Annie Leibovitz of his time. He moved in rarefied circles, a friend to presidents, vaudeville stars, leading thinkers. But when he was 32 years old, in 1900, he gave it all up to pursue his Great Idea: to capture on film the continent’s original inhabitants before the old ways disappeared.

Curtis spent the next three decades documenting the stories and rituals of more than eighty North American tribes. It took tremendous perseverance — ten years alone to persuade the Hopi to allow him to observe their Snake Dance ceremony. And the undertaking changed him profoundly, from detached observer to outraged advocate. Curtis would amass more than 40,000 photographs and 10,000 audio recordings, and he is credited with making the first narrative documentary film. In the process, the charming rogue with the grade school education created the most definitive archive of the American Indian.

This discussion will be held upstairs in the library.







Monday:   10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Tuesday:   10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Wednesday:   10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Thursday:   10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Friday:   10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Saturday:   10 a.m. - 5 p.m
Sunday:   12 p.m. - 4 p.m



182 Whisconier Road
Brookfield, CT 06804
203-775-6241
Fax 203-740-7723
Staff Directory
Ask A Question

Text Us


Get Email Updates

Kids Events

Makers Club - May 3, 2016

Read to Baci - May 3, 2016

Read to Baci - May 3, 2016

Read to Baci - May 3, 2016

Teens

Makers Club - May 3, 2016

Random Fandom - Star Wars - May 4, 2016

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!