- May 31 - King Library Opens at 1:00 PM
The Hangman's Daughter is a murder mystery set in the small Bavarian town of Schongau in 1659, some years after the end of the Thirty Years War, which had devastated almost all of Germany. Martha Stechlin, the town midwife is being accused of witchcraft and murder. The villagers are in a mounting hysteria, and the town council wants a speedy investigation, confession, and execution, before the mob starts an uncontrollable witch-hunt. This would be a repeat of something that had happened fairly recently in Schongau's history.
Jakob Kuisl, the executioner doesn't for a moment believe that Martha is either a murderess or a witch, but unless he can find incontrovertible proof of her innocence, he is soon going to have to inflict a great amount of pain on a woman whom he likes and respects. Helping him in his mission are his daughter, Magadalena, and the town physician, Simon Fronweiser; that is, when they are not too distracted by each other.
The Author, Oliver Pötzsch is a descendant of the Kuisls, a famous Bavarian executioner clan.
Winter's Bone shows us a glimpse of a side of America that most of us will never see. It's difficult to realize that people in a western, developed country actually live like this: well below the poverty line, freezing in their homes, in sheer survival mode, hunting squirrels just to eat, reliant on neighborly charity, facing the prospect of eviction with no apparent welfare system to support them.
Jennifer Lawrence stars as Ree Dolly, a 17 year old girl from the Ozarks of southeastern Missouri who is forced to care for her two younger siblings as well as her mentally ill mother. Her absent father went to jail for cooking meth. The sheriff (Garret Dillahunt) shows up at her home one day and tells her that her father's bond has been posted, and that he put his house up to cover that bond. Ree doesn't know where he is, and, if he misses his court date, she and her family are homeless. She decides to go looking for him among the meth heads around town, most of who are related to her in some way.
This is one of the few films that I've seen recently that I haven't been able to get out of my head, very dark and disturbing but well worth watching.
I adored The Glass Castle! The story of the Walls family is so painful, it's funny. Jeannette's narrative of her life is so cleverly written. Life with her two sisters, one brother, alcoholic father, and unrealistic mother is always an impoverished adventure. They begin in the desert, living off the grid in fear of getting caught by their father's phantom pursuers. They spend a greater part of the second half of the book in rural Appalachia, struggling to get by and put enough food on the table. But after many years of living under the oppressive tyranny that is their father, one by one the kids break away from the only life they've ever known to make something of themselves in New York City. It's also amazing that these kids, who have struggled in poverty their whole lives are so brilliant, striving to defy their parents and gain respect with their sharp intellects and determined work ethic. Jeannette's memoir is so touching and inspiring, everyone should read this amazing story.
One way to celebrate the holidays is to help a furry friend in need. For those thinking of adopting a pet, animal shelters are a fantastic option. There are millions of pets in shelters and rescues waiting for forever homes. Getting a dog is major decision that will affect your life for many years. Bringing an adopted dog into your home should be a rewarding experience for you and your family. Before you look for your future best friend, arm yourself with the knowledge to navigate the world of pet adoption and make the best decision possible. San Jose Animal Care & Services has many pets available for adoption...check it out!!
I really enjoyed this book! The Help recounts the lives of two black maids, close friends, in Jackson, Mississippi in the early 1960s. Through a third friend, a white female author, their stories, and those of people around them are coallated into a novel. It's hard to believe how difficult life was back then - and this is a book everyone should read, either to refresh memories or to learn some history.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is wonderful! It's dramatic and sad and funny and wry. Everything a book should be. It made me want to go to Guernsey and meet these people. They became that real to me. The entire book is told through letters and telegrams, so it is very easy to read since there are no long chapters and the dialogue is conversational. The characters are vividly portrayed and by the end of the novel they seem as familiar as friends.