Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Art Therapy

Praised by both critics and readers, B.A. Shapiro's thrilling first novel, The Art Forger, focused on a young female artist embroiled in a forgery scheme.  In Shapiro's latest work, The Muralist, the focus is also on a young woman with artistic ambitions, but this time the stakes are even greater.  The main character in this story, Alizee Benoit, is fighting for her family and her sanity.

This historical novel begins with Alizee's great niece, Danielle, discovering paintings that are stylistically similar to her great aunt's work.  As Danielle attempts to prove the paintings are Alizee's, her research helps illuminate her hazy knowledge of her mysterious relation.  Alizee had disappeared during the years leading up to World War II and no one knows what had happened to her. Danielle undertakes the challenge which takes her through many twists and turns, and several startling discoveries.

The main focus of the book is on Alizee and her struggle to create her artwork and remaining sane while her family is trying to escape the powder keg of Europe as the Nazis rise to power.  She's already coping with anxieties and other mental issues due to a previous trauma, so this new responsibility of trying to help her family escape to the United States is pushing her over the edge.  The lines between reality and illusion are blurred, and there are times you don't know if something is really happening to Alizee or if she's delusional.

Even though Alizee's character is fictional, there are several historical individuals she interacts with such as groundbreaking artists such as Mark Rothko, Jackson Pollock, Lee Krasner, and Willem de Kooning.  She is portrayed as a pioneer of abstract expressionism, someone with great potential and talent who inspired and influenced these artists to create this new style of art.

This book is quite suspenseful as it builds momentum and heads towards what appears to be an ominous conclusion, up until the last minute one is unsure of Alizee's fate (I'm surely not telling!). Issues such as is creativity associated with mental illness and having to choose between one's career versus one's family are at the heart of this book.  It's got a different feel than the Art Forger but should appeal to readers who gravitate towards books with strong female characters.



Wednesday, July 22, 2015

August 11 at 7:00 p.m. - Evening Book Discussion: Help for the Haunted by John Searles - Meet the Author!

http://alisweb.org/record=b12043346
Join us on August 11 at 7:00 p.m as we welcome back last year's wonderful guest speaker, John Searles, who will lead us in a "spirited" discussion of his Alex award winning novel, Help for the Haunted.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

July 21 at 7:00 p.m. - Evening Book Discussion: China Dolls by Lisa See - Skype with Author!

http://encore.alisweb.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb12110657__Schina%20dolls__Orightresult__X7;jsessionid=1847A5E92982907F0E1BF8A0339FECF1?lang=eng&suite=cobalt
Join us on July 21 at 7:00 p.m. as we skype with Lisa See, author of Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Peony in Love, Dreams of Joy, and Shanghai Girls. For this special presentation, Ms. See will discuss her latest work, China Dolls, a compelling historical novel about friendship and betrayal set during World War II.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

July 7th at 7:30 p.m. - Extraordinary People - Honoring Our Local Celebrities

What does an Emmy winning Saturday Night Live cameraman, a prize winning photographer and a Cosmopolitan Magazine editor have in common?  They are all famous East Meadow residents!  Join us as we learn more about these fascinating people!  Click here for more information on this special program.

Jan Kasoff

Tony Barboza

Camille Perri


Monday, June 22, 2015

June 30th at 7:30 p.m. - Evening Book Discussion: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

http://encore.alisweb.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb12119002__Sall%20the%20light%20we%20cannot%20see__Ff%3Afacetcollections%3A7%3A7%3AEast%20Meadow%3A%3A__Orightresult__X7?lang=eng&suite=cobaltJoin us on June 30 at 7:30 p.m. as we discuss All the Light We Cannot See.  From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning (Pulitzer Prize winner) Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

June 18th at 12:30 p.m. - Lunch 'N Books: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

http://encore.alisweb.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb12119002__Sall%20the%20light%20we%20cannot%20see__Ff%3Afacetcollections%3A7%3A7%3AEast%20Meadow%3A%3A__Orightresult__X7?lang=eng&suite=cobalt
Join us on June 18 at 12:30 p.m. as we discuss All the Light We Cannot See.  From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.  This Pulitzer Prize winning novel will be moderated by Marion Wren.     

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

June 1st - 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. - Adult Summer Reading Club “Out of the Ordinary...Extraordinary” Kickoff

https://ny.evanced.info/eastmeadow/sr/homepage.asp?ProgramID=13
The East Meadow Public Library Reader Services Department is excited to announce our fourth annual Adult Summer Reading Club.  It is a great way to learn about new titles to read during the lazy days of summer and a chance to participate in fun book programs!  Just sign up and then submit any titles you have read during the summer months.

The first sign up day will be Monday, June 1st. Our kickoff party will be held in the library lobby from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.  Can't make it?  You can register anytime between June 1st and August 4th at the Reference Desk or online at our website: https://ny.evanced.info/eastmeadow/sr/homepage.asp?ProgramID=13. Please choose to either enroll and review online or to enroll and submit reviews at the Reference Desk.