These are just a few of the many wonderful children's books we have in the library. Come and check them out!!
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Posted by Haverhill Library Assoc. at 8:14 PM
Monday, November 25, 2013
The library will host a discussion of The Once and Future King by T. H. White on Monday, December 9 at 7:00 PM. The program will be free and open to the public. This will be the third in the library’s fall series on British fantasy novels.
Published in 1958, The Once and Future King is White’s contemporary reinterpretation of the legends of King Arthur. This volume collected White’s three earlier Arthurian fantasies and added the concluding tale, so that the four sections of the book are: “The Sword in the Stone”; “The Queen of Air and Darkness”; “The Ill-Made Knight”; and “The Candle in the Wind.”
The Sword in the Stone, first published in 1938 and widely familiar as the source for the 1963 Disney movie, is a whimsical fantasy of the youth and education of King Arthur. White significantly revised this section for publication in The Once and Future King, dropping some episodes and adding others, in order to make it more consistent with the themes subsequently developed in the rest of the book.
The remaining sections are darker in tone and faithful to the central stories of Arthurian legend, especially as interpreted by Sir Thomas Malory in Le Morte d’Arthur. They tell the stories of Arthur’s rule as king and his establishment of the Round Table, of the affair between Sir Lancelot and Queen Guenever, and of Arthur’s struggle with his illegitimate son, Mordred. While White drew on these traditional stories, however, he often reinterprets the characters in contemporary psychological terms.
In The Once and Future King, T. H. White “took hold of the ultimate English epic,” says critic and novelist Lev Grossman, “and recast it in modern literary language, sacrificing none of its grandeur or strangeness.” White, says Grossman, should be “considered one of the founding fathers of modern fantasy, the way Tolkien and C. S. Lewis are.”
Posted by Haverhill Library Assoc. at 4:48 PM
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
The Gettysburg Address was delivered on April 19, 1863 at the dedication of a cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, four and a half months after the Union victory in the battle there. Lincoln’s speech was not intended to be the primary focus of the ceremony; that honor belonged to the two-hour oration delivered by Edward Everett. But while Everett’s speech has been largely forgotten, Lincoln’s brief address is now regarded as one of the premier examples of American orator.
We hope you will join us to celebrate this inspirational moment in American history.
Posted by Haverhill Library Assoc. at 4:19 PM
Thursday, October 24, 2013
The Library will host a discussion of The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien on Monday, November 11 at 7:00 PM. This will be second in the library’s fall series on British fantasy novels. The program will be free and open to the public.
Originally published in three volumes in 1954 and 1955, The Lord of the Rings became one of the most important and influential fantasy novels of the twentieth century. Indeed, its success was so great that the “high fantasy” mode that the book exemplified became the dominant, and almost only, commercially viable form of fantasy for many years. More than that, the book became an American cultural phenomenon in the mid-1960s and has become one of the best-selling titles in history.
The story concerns the efforts of a group of characters to destroy a magic ring and defeat an evil force that threatens their land of Middle-earth. From 2001 to 2003, the book was adapted in a series of three critically acclaimed and commercially successful films, directed by Peter Jackson. The third film in the series, The Return of the King, won eleven Academy Awards, including the award for Best Picture.
J. R. R. Tolkien was a philologist and professor at Oxford University. Born in 1892 in what is now South Africa, Tolkien studied at Oxford and fought in World War I, though he fell ill and was sent home. Drawing on his interest in languages and mythology, he developed a long and complex history of a fantasy realm that he termed “Middle-earth,” and out of that material eventually grew The Hobbit, published in 1937, and The Lord of the Rings. More of this material was subsequently published after his death in 1973 as The Silmarillion (1977) and in other volumes edited by his son and literary executor, Christopher.
The library’s series “The Fantastic Fifties: British Fantasy at Mid-Century or, What’s With All the Initials?” will conclude on Monday, December 9 with a discussion of The Once and Future King by T. H. White. Copies will be available to borrow in advance.
Posted by Haverhill Library Assoc. at 9:42 AM
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
The library will hold its next Book Club for Writers discussion on Thursday, October 24. The discussion will feature short stories by three contemporary, prize-winning writers who are all interested in the fantastic: Michael Chabon, Jonathan Lethem, and Steven Millhauser.
Copies of Chabon’s “In the Black Mill,” Lethem’s “Super Goat Man,” and Millhauser’s “Cat ’n’ Mouse” will be available from the library in advance. The discussion will begin at 7:00 PM and will be free and open to the public.
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for his novel The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay and of the Hugo and Nebula awards for The Yiddish Policemen’s Union, Michael Chabon is the author most recently of Telegraph Avenue. Chabon is known for blending elements of genre and literary fiction in his writing. “In the Black Mill” is purported to be the work of August Van Zorn, a fictional persona that Chabon has fashioned. Van Zorn is said to be a writer of pulp horror stories in the tradition of Lovecraft and Poe.
Jonathan Lethem’s novel Motherless Brooklyn won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction and his novel The Fortress of Solitude was a bestseller. His most recent book, Dissident Gardens, was just published last month. In 2005, he was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship, the so-called “genius grant.” Lethem is another writer known for blending literary and genre styles, an approach that characterizes “Super Goat Man,” a story first published in The New Yorker.
Steven Millhauser won the Pulitzer Prize for his novel Martin Dressler, but he is perhaps best-known as a writer of short stories. Millhauser’s stories are reminiscent of Poe and Borges; “his characteristic method,” says Jonathan Lethem, “mingles dreamlike and often morbid or perverse fantasies with meticulous realist observation.” Millhauser teaches at Skidmore College and his collections include In the Penny Arcade, The Barnum Museum, and The Knife Thrower. Lethem says that “Cat ’n’ Mouse” appears in his own personal “Millhauser hall of fame.”
Book Club for Writers is a fiction discussion program that meets four times a year. Discussions are open to all, and focus particularly on questions of craft and technique that will interest writers and aspiring writers. Created by the New Hampshire Writers’ Project, Book Club for Writers is sponsored locally by a fiction writing group that meets weekly at the Haverhill Corner Library.
The next Book Club for Writers discussion will be held on Thursday, January 23, 2014 and will feature “Mister Squishy” by David Foster Wallace, and two stories by George Saunders, “In Persuasion Nation” and “The Semplica Girl Diaries.”
Posted by Haverhill Library Assoc. at 9:58 AM