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Book Discussions, Book Talks, Author Visits

Novel Conversations (meets on the first Monday)

Mon., Jan. 5 at 6:30 p.m., Lois Bell Room

Still Life, by Louise Penny

In a small town in Quebec a woman supposedly loved by her community is found in the woods, murdered. Chief Inspector Armand Gamache looks for the small clues which will point him to the killer.

Monday, February 2 at 6:30 p.m., Lois Bell Room

The Yard, by Alex Grecian

Walter Day's first case for the London Murder Squad sets him on a hunt for the depraved madman who killed one of their own detectives. Now, Walter's best chance for success lies with Dr. Bernard Kingsley, the Yard's brilliant forensic pathologist.

Monday, March 2 at 6:30 p.m., Lois Bell Room

Private, by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro

Former CIA agent Jack Morgan inherits his father's elite Los Angeles detective agency and along with it such cases as an NFL gambling scandal, eighteen unsolved schoolgirl slayings, and the murder of his best friend's wife. First book in the Private Detective Agency mystery series.

International Book-ings (meets on the second Wednesday; features fiction & nonfiction either set in international locales, or with international authors)

This group's main focus is on authors and locations from around the world. Books are available for checkout at the Circulation Desk and at each meeting. When possible, movie tie-ins will be presented.

Wed., Dec. 10 at 1 p.m., Lois Bell Room

Simple Courage: The True Story of Peril on the Sea, by Frank Delaney

In late December 1951, laden with passengers and nearly forty metric tons of cargo, the freighter S.S. Flying Enterprise steamed westward from Europe toward America. A few days into the voyage, she hit the eye of a ferocious storm. In the space of twenty-eight hours, the ship was slammed by two rogue waves–solid walls of water more than sixty feet high. The impacts cracked the decks and hull almost down to the waterline, threw the vessel over on her side, and thrust all on board into terror. In a narrative as dramatic as the ocean’s fury, acclaimed bestselling author Frank Delaney writes a gripping and astonishing account of the unmatched bravery and steely resolve of Captain Kurt Carlsen not to abandon the ship, save the passengers, crew and cargo and bring it into port. (from

Wed., January 14 at 1 p.m., Lois Bell Room

Bel Canto, by Ann Patchett

Set in South America and based (loosely) on a real-life terrorist event that took place in Peru in 1997, this award-winning New York Times bestselling novel balances the themes of love and crisis. Joined by no common language except music, hostages and their captors forge unexpected bonds. The author flits in and out of the hearts and psyches of hostages and terrorists alike. Time stands still as priorities rearrange themselves. (from

Wednesday, February 11 at 1 p.m., Lois Bell Room

The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls (Memoir)

Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn non-conformity were both their curse and their salvation. She opens her memoir by describing looking out the window of her taxi in New York City, wondering if she's "overdressed for the evening" and spotting her mother on the sidewalk, "rooting through a Dumpster." Hers is not only a story of triumph against all odds, but also a tender and moving account of unconditional love for her family. A compelling read about a dysfunctional family. (from

Wednesday, March 11 at 1 p.m., Lois Bell Room

The Housemaid’s Daughter, by Barbara Mutch

Set in early 20th century South Africa, the author’s stunning first novel tells a story of love and duty colliding on the stark plains of Apartheid-era South Africa. The time span is from the early 1920s to the 1950s. Although the style of this novel seems simple, it deals with very complex issues. The Housemaid’s Daughter gives us a glimpse into South Africa when Apartheid is becoming more of a threat and a danger to all who live there. Blacks, whites and colored are all affected by the rules and dangers of breaking those rules. (from

Cynthia Ogorek: Along the Calumet River in Indiana and Illinois

Sat., Dec. 6 at 10 a.m.

The public is invited to this joint meeting of the Hammond Historical Society and the Friends of the Library. Ogorek, "The Public Historian," will discuss the importance of this river in commerce, travel, and settlement of the Region.

She is also the author of The Lincoln Highway Around Chicago and Along the Chicago South Shore and South Bend Line.

Hammond Public Library, 564 State Street, Hammond, Indiana 46320, (219) 931-5100