Open to the Public Since 1894
206 S. Spring St.Harbor Springs, MI 49740
Thursday, 1/31 at 7pmTEDtalk and Discussion"The Climate Report"
Saturday, 2/2 at 10:30amTake Your Child to the Library Day Story Time and Crafts
Friday, 2/8 at 4pmHarbor Springs Ice Fest Story Time and Crafts
Thursday, 2/21 at 5:30pm at the Harbor Springs Area Historical SocietyHistory Talk: The Harbor Springs Library
Wednesday, 3/20 at 1pmThe Gilmore Car Museum Lecture"Driving Through the Jim Crow Era"
Saturday, 6/15 at 1pm at the PierHarbor Springs Library's Scrabble Scramble Fundraiser
I write this on our third snow day (and as my driveway is being plowed for the fifth time) in the last six days. I'm not seeing too many of your smiling faces in here today, but I completely understand that when it's this cold and the roads are this bad, we all want to hunker down. Preferably with a good book. But if you do make the trek into town, we are currently open. We'll post on social media and on our entry door if that changes.
Tomorrow night (Thursday, 1/31), if we can all make it out of our driveways, we have our regular TEDtalk and Discussion event here at the library at 7pm. Our theme this month is "The Climate Change Report." We'll be screening roughly three recorded TEDtalks based on climate change and the environment and will be led through a discussion by Cyndi Kramer. This event, as always, is free and open to the public. The more perspectives, the better the discussion!
National Take Your Child to the Library Day falls on Saturday, February 2nd, which happens to be the day of our next story time! Join Linda Culbertson for stories and crafts, along with special TYCLD bookmarks and snacks! Story time will begin at 10:30am.
Speaking of special story times, we're holding another all-ages story time on Friday, February 5th at 4pm in conjunction with The Harbor Springs Ice Fest! There will be ice sculptures up and down the street, as well as face painting and music. Come on upstairs at 4 for some icy stories and crafts!
Have you ever been curious about how the Harbor Springs Library came about? On Thursday, February 21st, I'm going to give a history talk down at the Harbor Springs Area Historical Society (349 E. Main St.) at 5:30pm. We'll be looking at old photos of Harbor Springs and the library and learning about our roots in the community. Admission to the talk is $5 for Historical Society members and $10 for non-members. Refreshments will be served. Due to limited seating at the museum, reservations are strongly encouraged and can be made by calling the museum at 526-9771.
Last year, the Gilmore Car Museum presented a fascinating slideshow talk here at the HSL about Alice Ramsey and the first all-woman cross-country road trip in 1909. This year, they're returning to talk about "Driving Through the Jim Crow South." If you saw the movie "Green Book," you might be interested in learning more about how the annual guidebook helped ease travel for African Americans in the south from the 1930s through the 60s. Please join us for this lecture on Wednesday, March 20th at 1pm here at the Harbor Springs Library.
And one last event to look forward to: the Harbor Springs Library is holding a "Scrabble Scramble" fundraiser on Saturday, June 15th at the Pier's Wheelhouse Lounge! Here's how it works: gather together a team of four, with each teammember raising pledges to play in the tournament. Teams are given a game board and a bag of 100 letter tiles. The game will be played in two timed rounds- all teams are given the same starting word and then the team together will fill up the board to make the highest-scoring board you can. You'll be able to purchase extra tiles and peeks in the official Scrabble dictionary. Prizes (such as a charter for 12 on the Pointer Boat with with wine and cheese!) will be awarded for the highest combined score and the top fundraisers. All money raised will benefit the Harbor Springs Library, a nonprofit organization supported by community donations. Registration forms are available at the library. Start thinking of team names and friends who will want to join in!
Here are some of the newest books on our library shelves:
The Eulogist, by Terry Gamble
One woman lays bare her family’s secrets—for better or worse.
Set in the decades before the Civil War, Gamble’s (Good Family, 2009, etc.) novel centers around the Givens family, which has emigrated from Ireland to America, settling in Cincinnati. After their mother dies in childbirth and their father abandons them though they're still teenagers, the three Givens children—Olivia, who becomes a transgressive schoolteacher; James, a hustling businessman; and Erasmus, an itinerant preacher with a penchant for alcohol—must find a way to survive and thrive in a strange land. Told from Olivia’s perspective, the novel touches on abolition, immigration, religion (or lack thereof), courtship, and illness through the lens of one family’s history. As a character, Olivia feels true to the 19th century while defying and questioning societal norms as often as she can—for example, she reads, writes, and wears men’s clothing. When she meets Silas Orpheus, a doctor, her life changes in ways she could never have anticipated. Silas introduces her to Tilly, a talented slave owned by his brother. When her attempt to help Tilly goes horribly awry, all three Givens children become involved in the abolition movement to varying degrees. Gamble’s writing is delicate when she’s describing the natural world: “even at this hour, the air was as thick as cream,” and “soon the bats came out, dodging and darting, winging along the water’s edge where the insects were thick.” The plot can feel uneven at times, lingering too long on certain scenes and glossing over others too quickly. However, as the narrative structure becomes clearer, the novel’s proclivity for detail feels purposeful rather than tedious. It’s a book that would benefit from a reread—if only to catch all the hints along the way.
A sprawling yet richly drawn family saga. (Kirkus Reviews)
Asymmetry, by Lisa Halliday
Two seemingly unrelated novellas form one delicately joined whole in this observant debut.
Halliday writes first, in Folly, of Alice, an editor in New York during the second Bush presidency, and her relationship with Ezra, a well-known and much older author. Alice struggles to establish her own identity at a time when Ezra’s health concerns focus his attention on mortality. Through their occupations and their relationship, the lovers examine the nature of story. “Who knows if it’s any good," Ezra says of his manuscript at one point. "It’s a funny business, this. Making things up. Describing things." Alice’s roles as both a literary gatekeeper and a much younger companion are an important, related dichotomy. Art is omnipresent; music and baseball, too, become the rhythm that runs beneath the melody of the couple's interaction. Alice wants to write about herself, but she “doesn’t seem important enough.” The lovers’ age difference adds gravity to their relationship and the stories they each tell. The second part of the book, Madness, initially appears to be wholly unrelated to the first: Amar, an Iraqi-American economist, is detained at Heathrow on his way to visit his brother in Kurdistan in 2008. Halliday hints at her strategy, though: “Death is the dark backing a mirror needs if we are to see anything,” says Amar as he’s detained, quoting Bellow. Amar’s story is darker, filled with grief, and alternates between flashbacks and the present day. Though nothing is obvious about the connection of Amar’s story to Alice’s, the author gently highlights notes from the first story, and the juxtaposition of the two tales is further complicated—and illuminated—by the addition of a third and final section that brings them together.
A singularly conceived graft of one narrative upon another; what grows out of these conjoined stories is a beautiful reflection of life and art. (Kirkus Reviews- Named one of the best books of 2018)
The Only Woman in the Room, by Marie Benedict
One of the most beautiful women ever to grace the silver screen, Hedy Lamarr also designed a secret weapon against Nazi Germany.
In her latest portrayal of a lesser-known woman scientist, Benedict (The Other Einstein, 2016, etc.) spins the tale of Lamarr, born Hedwig Kiesler, from her late teens in Austria through her success in Hollywood. Born to Jewish parents in a posh Vienna neighborhood, Hedy endures her mother’s criticism while following her father’s encouragement to pursue both science and acting. Although she finds early success with the risqué Ecstasy, the film’s nudity haunts her efforts to be taken seriously. Just as she achieves the respect of her peers as a stage actress, Hedy catches the eye of Fritz Mandl, a wealthy, charismatic older man who owns several munitions factories. Rumored to have mistreated his former mistresses and to be in league with the fascist (albeit anti-Nazi) Austrian Christian Social Party, Fritz determines to wine, dine, and wed Hedy. Once married, however, Hedy finds herself virtually imprisoned and often abused by her jealous husband. Yet Hedy proves invaluable to Fritz when she begins to gather secret information from their well-connected, politically ambitious house guests. After all, who would suspect such a beautiful woman of understanding military secrets? Yet as Germany and Italy begin to join forces against Austria, Hedy discovers just how mercenary Fritz can be. A daring escape leads Hedy to America, where she vows never to be under another man’s thumb. Once out of Fritz’s reach, Hedy not only returns to acting, but also embarks on a new career as an inventor. Remembering the sensitive information carelessly revealed at Vienna dinner parties, she develops a brilliant radio-communication device. But will the American Navy accept such a weapon from a woman?
A captivating story of a complicated woman blazing new trails. (Kirkus Reviews)
Don't forget that you can place reserves on these and any books by visiting our website at www.harborspringslibrary.org and signing in with your library card number and your phone number.
As a reminder, Katie down at Between the Covers offers a generous 20% discount on books intended to be donated to the library. She has a list of books that we'd love to receive, and we're more than happy to inscribe a bookplate honoring you, your child, your grandchild, your dog, or your favorite teacher! You can also donate directly to the library or on our website via Paypal.
As an independently funded library that doesn't receive any tax dollars, we always appreciate your support.
Amélie Trufant Dawson
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Harbor Springs Library206 S. Spring StreetHarbor Springs, MI 49740
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