- May 31 - King Library Opens at 1:00 PM
San Jose Public Library's Online Book Club is a monthly feature that encourages readers to share and discuss a given book each month. Selections are made based on local interest and relevance.
Our selection for this month, Dubliners by James Joyce was chosen to coincide with with a similar program in one of San Jose's sister cities. During the month of April, residents of Dublin, Ireland are participating in the One City, One Book program sponsored by Dublin City Public Libraries. We invite you to share your thoughts on Dubliners not only here, but also with fellow readers across the sea.
Question for Week 3: To what extent does one's birthplace determine one's identity or destiny? Is it less of a factor with today's global economy and communications than it was when Dubliners was published nearly a century ago?
Before reading the book, I thought my answer would be that of course birthplace had a greater impact on one's life and life choices when Dubliners was written than it does today. Now I am not so sure. Even though transportation and technology have vastly improved, I think other factors sometimes have a greater impact on the choices we make. Joyce's character Eveline had the opportunity to leave Dublin and choose a very different life in another country and yet she chose to stay even though her life there held little promise of happiness. Perhaps it is not the opportunity to move, but the courage or determination to risk the unknown that is the bigger factor in how one's life plays out. My father was born in a small Midwestern farming community. He was valedictorian of a graduating class of 13. Determined to get an education, he went to college on a scholarship and later finished on the GI Bill. After graduation and marriage he accepted a teaching job in California and began a career in education far different from the lives of the friends and cousins with whom he'd grown up. I, on the other hand, had many more options open to me and yet I still live in the same city in which I was born. Is it because I had choices that I didn't need to move, or is it that, like Eveline, I was not willing to give up the familiar for unknown possibilities? What do you think? Is birthplace still as much a determining factor in one's destiny as it was when Dubliners was first published or are there other more critical factors one needs to take into account?
SJPL's online book club selection for April is Dubliners by James Joyce, and next month the West Valley Book Club will meet to discuss another novel that takes place in San Jose's sister city of Dublin, Ireland. Our book club will meet on Wednesday, May 9 at 6:30pm to discuss bestselling Irish author Maeve Binchy's novel Quentins. Be sure to join us for lively literary conversation!
Is it possible to tell the story of a generation and a city through the history of a restaurant? Ella Brady thinks so. She wants to film a documentary about Quentins that will capture the spirit of Dublin from the 1970s to the present day. And Quentins has a thousand stories to tell: tales of love, of betrayal, of revenge; of times when it looked ready for success and times when it seemed as if it must close in failure. But as Ella uncovers more of what has gone on at Quentins, she begins to wonder whether some secrets should be kept that way... (from Amazon)
Dublin, Ireland is a sister city to San Jose and this Summer the children of Dublin and San Jose exchanged postcards! It was a great way for the children to tell each other about their cities with words and pictures. Reading these postcards is like going on a sight seeing trip of Dublin! Find out about the Luas, a transport system similar to our Light Rail, the Aviva Stadium where soccer is played plus many other interesting sights. We have enjoyed these postcards and we hope that the children of Dublin enjoyed the ones we sent. If you would like to see all the postcards from Dublin, they are on display in the Children's Room of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library.
Thursday, March 10
A delegation from Dublin, Ireland, a sister city of San José, will visit the Library to talk about continued collaboration between the two cities as well as the Dublin 2011 One City/One Book selected novel, Ghost Light by Joseph O'Connor. This marks the 25th anniversary of the Dublin/San José collaboration. Please join us for remarks by the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Councilor Gerry Breen; Deputy City Manager of Dublin, Philip Maguire; San José Public Library Director, Jane Light; and San Jose State University Library Dean, Ruth Kifer.
For more information on Irish Week 2011 visit www.sanjosedublin.org
Book lovers in Dublin, Ireland, are reading Joseph O'Connor's Ghost Light as their One City/One Book pick for 2011. Ghost Light is a story of theater and romance set in post-World War II London and has received rave reviews since its publication in Ireland. It comes out in the United States next week, and we've pre-ordered 38 copies, so place your hold now!
A special treat for Bay Area readers: the author will do a reading and signing at Book Passage bookstore in Corte Madera on Thursday, February 17 at 7pm.
A whole city reading one book - sound like fun? San José does this too - join us for Silicon Valley Reads 2011!